Christophe Berra has cranked the pressure up on England
Gordon Strachan’s side face the Group F leaders in a vital World Cup qualifier on Saturday.
The English players are under constant, intense pressure from an expectant support, public and media to deliver, no matter the opposition.
And Berra believes that burden can play into the hands of Scotland, who will be huge underdogs in Glasgow.
“They are top players but they will have a bit of a fear factor as well,” said the 32-year-old centre-half, who returned to Hearts last month after eight years playing down south with Wolves and then Ipswich Town.
“There is a lot of pressure on them. If they lose against us then the press will ridicule them.
There is a lot of pressure on them
Scotland star Christophe Berra
“I always say the press is bad but if you go to other countries such as Spain, Italy and Germany then the press will be the same and you will get stick. That is part and parcel of football and sport. They are under pressure to do well.
“It is going to be a tough game for both teams.”
Gareth Southgate’s squad is made up of Premier League superstars but Berra insists reputations count for nothing in a one-off game.
And he is adamant Scotland’s players can defy their inferior pedigree to pull off a famous victory, just like they did against world champions France home and away in the Euro 2008 qualification campaign.
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Gareth Southgate took over after Sam Allardyce was sacked following a corruption scandal
Berra said: “They all play for the top teams in the Premier League and play in the Champions League.
“The Celtic boys have had a great year. The rest of our squad play for lower-end Premier League teams and higher-end Championship teams.
“That counts for nothing in a one-off game. There have been many games when the underdog has won.
“Scotland have done it in the past against France as well as other top nations. It is a game of football lasting 90 minutes.
“You need a bit of luck on your side but we have a good set of lads and the manager will have us well prepared.”
England squad put through their paces at Royal Marine's Commando training centre Mon, June 5, 2017
England manager Gareth Southgate took his squad on a secret retreat to the Royal Marine's Commando Training Centre ahead of their clash with Scotland on Saturday (5pm)
Play slideshow LPhot Barry Wheeler, Royal Navy 1 of 7
The England squad were put through their paces by the Royal Marines last weekend
Berra hasn’t played since Ipswich’s Championship campaign ended on May 7 but the new Tynecastle captain insists he’ll be ready if he gets the nod from national manager Gordon Strachan.
He said: “Obviously there is match sharpness but the gaffer’s training is hard anyway, and we’ll probably do a lot of 11 v 11.
“We’ll be on it. And the rest side of it is important.
“We’ve had a bit of rest, so we might come back a bit refreshed. In a one-off game, adrenaline will get you through it, I’m sure of that.
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“The boys will be ready.”
This weekend’s clash with the Auld Enemy will be refereed by Italian Paolo Tagliavento. The experienced 44-year-old owns a hairdressing salon but spends more time with a whistle than scissors after becoming a leading Serie A official.
Tagliavento oversaw Scotland’s 2-0 World Cup qualifying defeat to Belgium in 2013.
He was also the man in the middle when Hearts were thrashed 5-0 by Tottenham in a Europa League qualifier in 2011.
Fellow countrymen Matteo Passeri and Alessandro Costanzo are the assistant referees, while Paolo Valeri is the fourth official.