Scotland stick with Burley

George Burley will continue as Scotland manager despite the country's failure to qualify for next year's World Cup in South Africa.

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George Burley will continue as Scotland manager, the Scottish Football Association (SFA) said today. The 53-year-old Burley's position had been in doubt since Scotland's 1-0 loss to Netherlands last Wednesday, which meant they could not qualify for next year's World Cup in South Africa. "We have today given our full backing to George as Scotland National Coach," the SFA chief executive Gordon Smith said in a statement.

"We met with George yesterday and it was clear that he was as disappointed as everyone that we have not made it to South Africa. "You will not meet a more passionate, committed Scot than George. He is a man who cares deeply for his country and wants to take us back to the stage where we regularly qualify for major championships." Scotland, who last reached the World Cup finals in 1998 and European Championship in 1996, appointed the former Ipswich Town and Derby County manager Burley in January 2008.

"If the World Cup campaign has shown us anything it is that we are at our best when we work together. It is by standing united behind the manager and the team that we can achieve the success that we all crave," Smith added. * Reuters