Scotland defender Jen Beattie says playing all of their Women’s World Cup qualifying games at Hampden Park will provide a “huge boost”.
The 29-year-old was given a huge lift by the news and aims to take that feeling onto the pitch during Tuesday’s historic encounter with the Faroe Islands in Glasgow.
Beattie faced Jamaica at Hampden on a one-off occasion before the Scots went to their first World Cup finals in 2019 but the commitment to stage women’s internationals in the national stadium felt like a bigger step forward.
“When that was announced, it was such an amazing feeling, I think especially for the players who have been involved for a long time,” the Arsenal player said.
“To see the SFA (Scottish Football Association) backing us and putting us in at Hampden for all our qualifiers was a really good feeling.
“You never really know when these stages are going to happen and when you do, you think, ‘We are heading in the right direction’. We just can’t wait to get on that pitch.
“To have the fans back as well on Tuesday night, everyone is really looking forward to it.
“A few of us had the opportunity to play against Jamaica before the World Cup, and that was an amazing feeling for the send-off before that.
“Anyone wants to play at their national stadium, so it’s a huge boost.”
Adding to the sense of a new era is the fact that Pedro Martinez Losa is taking charge of his first international camp.
The former Arsenal and Bordeaux Women manager got the qualifying campaign off to a winning start with a 2-0 victory in Hungary on Friday.
“I think he has brought a lot more attention to detail,” Beattie said. “I think you can tell he has worked a lot at certain clubs, especially in the French style of play, what he has done with Bordeaux and a lot of technical detail, and a lot more information.
“That has been great for us, to try and grasp things as quickly as possible. Obviously we had to grasp it straight away because he hasn’t had time with us in friendlies.
“Three points against Hungary was a huge start for us. I don’t think any of us would be 100 per cent content with the way we played, but I don’t think any of us really expected to do that with a brand new coaching team and brand new technical development and everything he has tried to implement.
“The next thing is the next game and we want to improve on the performance.
“If we get two victories in this camp with it having been the first one with Pedro, I think it will be a really successful one.”
Getting a fresh start at Hampden under new management will likely mean more to Beattie than most of her team-mates, less than a year after being diagnosed with breast cancer.
After successful treatment, she said: “Personally, having gone through the year I had with various things going on, and then having back surgery, to be part of the squad, playing and winning games, I am high as a kite. You couldn’t get me off the ceiling.
“I am loving every minute, a new coach and new players coming through.”