KIERAN TIERNEY has at times been Scotland’s best left-back, centre-back and left winger. And that was just last night against the Faroe Islands.

The only place that the Arsenal and former Celtic man was stationed on the left of the Scotland back three was on the team sheet. It speaks volumes for his sheer athletic ability and his wonderful footballing talent that as a defender - nominally, anyway - Tierney in fact had something of a free role. He was popping up here, there and everywhere, giving the Scots the illusion at times of having an extra man or two.

Take the opening goal. Scotland had been getting a fair bit of joy by switching the play quickly against a Faroese defence that was so packed it resembled a pre-match, pre-Covid queue at the bar in the Montford. Having pulled them to the right, the ball was switched to Andy Robertson and then Callum McGregor to produce a lovely pass in behind for the rampaging Tierney on the left.

From there, he had the wherewithal to get his head up and produce a trademark cutback for the arriving John McGinn to sweep into the corner. He would have had another after a similar move moments later, only for Lyndon Dykes to stick out a foot at the last minute and divert the ball out of his path.

It was a recurring theme. One minute Tierney was back scrapping with Faroese forward Meinhard Olsen, the next he was tearing in behind full-back Gilli Rolantsson. To have such an influence on the game from his position is impressive enough even against this level of opposition, but he has done a similar job now in all three of Scotland’s matches of this World Cup qualifying run.

He was at it again for the second goal to settle any lingering Scottish nerves early in the second half, turning Rolantsson this way and that before picking out that man McGinn again in the area to bullet home a header. It was the Aston Villa man’s third goal in these three games, and as valuable as his own contribution was against the Faroes, even his double didn’t bring him close to challenging Tierney for the man-of-the-match award.

Overall, it was a satisfying night’s work for Scotland, giving them a decent enough points return from their opening three matches in Group F. Hope springs eternal.

This was the last competitive match that Scotland will play before they end their wait for major tournament football. They won at a canter, scoring four goals. It may well be the last match they play in an empty Hampden without the backing of the Tartan Army. And there was a first Scotland goal for Che Adams too.

The Tartan Army have been eagerly anticipating the partnering of Dykes and Adams in attack since the Southampton man declared for Scotland, and they got their first start together here at the business end of a 3-5-2 set-up.

It took them a little while to get on the same wavelength, but Adams will feel he should have done better than leave the ball behind when Dykes took the defence under the ball to leave his strike partner scampering in round the back.

The more effective partnership in the early stages was the one on the left between captain Andy Robertson and Tierney, who were essentially both playing as wingers.

There was a couple of lovely link-ups between the front pairing soon after though, with an Adams flick finding Dykes and then a stepover from Adams almost giving Dykes a sight of goal.

Dykes, in truth, was struggling to make much of an impact in the opening half hour, but he produced a lovely bit of hold up play and then a spin and pass in behind that Adams was inches away from reaching before former Motherwell goalkeeper Gunnar Neilsen came rushing out at his feet.

When the goal came for Adams though on the hour, it was all his own work. Well mostly. Tierney will of course claim the hat-trick of assists for rolling the ball into his path.

A lovely flick gave Adams three or four yards of space, and he made the most of it, having time to roll his studs over the ball and thump it low past Neilsen from 25 yards out.

There was also a confidence-boosting performance from Robertson, who manager Steve Clarke had felt compelled to defend from his critics during the week. It was capped off with a lovely assist for Scotland’s fourth, the Liverpool man clipping it up to the back post for Ryan Fraser to show his, er, trademark aerial prowess by heading home.

There was also a Scotland debut in attack for Kevin Nisbet as he replaced the tiring Dykes, his fairytale comeback story complete after bouncing back from once being freed by Partick Thistle to pull on the dark blue.

At 4-0 up, Oli McBurnie came on to try and get his first Scotland goal at the 16th attempt, and...well, you can’t have everything.

Ok, ok, it was against the Faroe Islands. But an emphatic win it was, and it is three points that take the Scots into second place in Group F, and right back in to the race to the World Cup in Qatar.

Reasons to be cheerful indeed. And, of course, we have Tierney.