Rhodes delight at Scotland chance

  • Last Updated: September 9 2012, 17:27 BST

Jordan Rhodes' excitement over making his competitive debut for Scotland overshadowed any disappointment over the failure to win their opening World Cup qualifier against Serbia.

Rhodes: Competitive debut

The Blackburn striker was an 81st-minute substitute in the goalless Hampden draw and had few chances to show why Rovers paid Huddersfield £8million for his services last month.

The crowd were chanting the 22-year-old's name long before he came on but there was no frustration from Rhodes that he did not get longer.

"It was fantastic just to go out there," said Rhodes, who scored on his first Scotland start against Australia last month.

"It was a dream come through to go out there and step out in front of those fans at a World Cup campaign. It was very exciting and it doesn't get much more exciting than that."

Rhodes added: "It is always difficult as a sub to go on because you are never up to the pace of the game.

"I just tried to run about and give it my all and try to close their back four down and force them into little mistakes here and there, and maybe I did once or twice, and as a sub you try to do as best as I can."

Rhodes and Jamie Mackie replaced Kenny Miller, who failed to make the most of several half-chances, and the below-par James Morrison, in a double substitution as manager Craig Levein moved to a 4-4-2.

Levein had brought on James Forrest for Robert Snodgrass - who faded after a bright first half - in the 69th minute, and he admitted afterwards he might have waited too long to change things.

Scotland had created good chances for Snodgrass and Steven Naismith beforehand but the Serbs began to look more comfortable going into the last quarter.

Levein told BBC Scotland: "I thought Kenny played well. He'd had opportunities to score and might have had more if we picked him out on occasions.

"In hindsight I might have gone earlier as well.

"I put James Forrest on to try to give us a spark before the two lads up front.

"But that's hindsight. Sometimes you make a decision that works, sometimes it doesn't.

"I thought James Forrest made a difference, I thought particularly Jamie Mackie made a difference and Jordan as well.

"I spoke before the match about having players who are capable of going on and changing games. They did that.

"Unfortunately at the end, if the ball bounces two yards the other way, Jordan taps it in."

The final whistle was met with boos by some fans, although others showed their appreciation for the team's efforts.

Failure to win the opening home game has put Scotland under pressure to beat Macedonia at Hampden on Tuesday, but Rhodes will not be derailed by talk of pressure.

"I am not sure I am the man to speak about the situation, it is all very new to me, I am just happy to be here," he said.

"I presume that will be a very good result against a very tough team on the day.

"They were very good, solid and tough to break down at times, so I thought it was a good performance and sets us up quite nicely going into the game on Tuesday.

"We will try our best and do what we can and hopefully that is good enough on the night."