Euro 2016: Gibraltar enjoy 'surreal' qualifying draw after joining European elite
Sky Sports News' David Garrido reports from Nice where the draw for Euro 2016 included Gibraltar.
Last Updated: 24/02/14 12:23pm
For a man who'd fought so hard to get the tiny British Overseas Territory into UEFA in the first place, it was a relatively measured reaction.
The group provides a huge challenge for Gibraltar, but also an incredible adventure, to both uncharted territory and a few more familiar places.
"From a personal point of view, I said I'd love Scotland because of the Scottish roots on my father's side and my Scottish surname," said Reoch, "and lo and behold, we get Scotland." You couldn't make it up.
Allen Bula, manager of the national team, was his true passionate self, once Gordon Strachan's side were placed in the same group: "I tried not to jump out of my seat, but I think I did and my arms went mad like I'd just scored a goal."
There's also sure to be a fair bit of banter with his No 2 once that trip to Scotland comes up in March 2015. "My assistant manager Dave Wilson, he must be over the moon because he's Scottish himself," Bula said.
But of course Gibraltar's glamour tie is three-time European champions Germany, home and away - where the likes of defender Roy Chipolina and keeper Jordan Perez will attempt to repel the relentless attacks anchored by Bastian Schweinsteiger, created by Mesut Ozil and probably finished off by Mario Gotze, Thomas Muller or Marco Reus - take your pick.
Bula shared a handshake and a few words with Germany coach Joachim Low, who was just a few seats down from him at the Palais Acropolis in Nice where the draw took place, and he freely admits that Germany would have to have a "very bad day" for Gibraltar to get anything out of those two encounters.
In front of a packed mixed zone of reporters the 49-year-old answered every question with a smile and sincerity. Bula can more than hold his own in the press, unfazed by the popping of flashbulbs and dozens of lenses trained on him. Whether it's about football or family, he can talk for Gibraltar, but that scrutiny is only going to increase and intensify over the next 18 months.
Bula's recruitment drive is one area where the focus, and maybe the knives, will sharpen. He's open to considering players who are eligible through having a Gibraltarian parent or grandparent and indeed he has called up three new faces for the upcoming friendlies in March against the Faroe Islands and Estonia: Wycombe's Reece Styche, David Artell of Wrexham and Southampton keeper Will Britt.
As for Euro 2016 qualifying, the campaign gets under way with a "home" game in early September against Poland, which is scheduled for Sunday 7 September in Faro, Portuglal since they can't stage competitive internationals at their own Victoria Stadium in Gibraltar.
Although he says his goal is to reach the play-offs, Bula wants to be respected above all: "We've just got to go out there and perform, and show the rest of the world that we deserve to be here."