COVID crisis? What Covid crisis? The only thing spreading rapidly throughout Scotland right now is European Championship fever, with side effects including wild optimism and a heady sense of euphoria.

Ok, we might be getting slightly ahead of ourselves. But if this is what a depleted Scotland side can produce against The Netherlands – albeit in a friendly – then the Tartan Army have every right to be thinking positively as the national side look to be peaking at the right time ahead of the Euros.

Scotland went into this game minus John Fleck due to the midfielder’s positive Coronavirus test, as well as David Marshall, Stephen O'Donnell, Nathan Patterson, Grant Hanley, John McGinn, and Che Adams, who had all been identified as close contacts and left in Alicante as a result.

Even still – and with Scott McTominay and Billy Gilmour being rested - the encouraging thing was that this didn’t look like a shadow Scotland side on paper, and it certainly didn’t by the end of the evening on the pitch when victory was cruelly snatched away in the dying moments. There is real depth now at Steve Clarke’s disposal, and these men more than deserved their 2-2 draw. At least.

Given the circumstances, similes containing infectious diseases might not be the most welcome, but it has to be said that Scotland were all over the Dutch like a rash at the start of the game.

Even still, the Tartan Army may have thought they were coming down with something when they saw what happened next.

The smothering press of the Scots had made the Dutch ditherers dizzy, and when the ball was won high up the pitch on transition, Jack Hendry found himself in an unusual position on the edge of the box. The big defender looked up and then smashed a beauty low past Tim Krul and into the bottom corner.

As the rest of us checked to see if we were having a fever dream, Scotland got straight back on the front foot, and Lyndon Dykes immediately had his own clear sight of goal, bringing out a really decent save from Krul.

Just as we were getting giddy though, came the inevitable come down. The Scotland defence were caught under a high ball, with two defenders attracted to Gini Wijnaldum. The midfielder’s knockdown subsequently found Memphis Depay in more space than a shopper with a tickly cough gets in the supermarket. He took full advantage, thwacking a volley low beyond Craig Gordon.

Debutant David Turnbull might have thought he could have done better, having rather fallen asleep to allow Depay to peel off his back. But in fairness to the Celtic man, the defensive duties he was being asked to do in a deeper role have never been his forte.

There was more encouragement when he did get on the ball though, generally using it well and looking right at home in such exalted company.

Scotland’s early exuberance had rather made way for the more belligerent containment that we may have expected prior to kick off, but a trademark burst down the left from Kieran Tierney served a reminder that there is plenty of threat about this side even when the opposition are having the majority of possession.

The second half started in much quieter fashion, but on the hour we got a look at Kevin Nisbet, on for the tiring Dykes, as well as Declan Gallagher and Ryan Fraser. It didn’t take long for him to make an incredible impact.

He was helped along the way by some brilliant play down the left from Ryan Christie and Andy Robertson, with the Scotland captain swinging a trademark cross to the back post where Nisbet had pulled free with some clever movement, and he finished calmly under Krul. Nurse!

A brilliant one-two between Christie and Turnbull then saw the latter shave the top of the net with a curling effort, and by this point, every member of the Tartan Army was coming over all John Gordon Sinclair.

Tierney and Robertson were given a breather, with Scott McKenna and Greg Taylor coming on, but the Scots continued to stand firm in the face of some intense Dutch pressure, helped by a very decent save from Gordon after a deflection.

The impressive Turnbull made way for fellow debutant Gilmour, with some lovely touches from the Chelsea man looking to have rounded off a perfect night for Scotland and their delirious supporters at home.

It almost didn't matter that Depay struck a late equaliser from a free-kick, even if the way he won the free-kick stuck in the craw like a lateral flow test. It was a great hit from 20 yards that was past Gordon before he moved, but the big picture was more important. Impressive individual performances within a strong collective unit. Everything that Clarke could have asked for and more.

After the Covid-related panic, now there is hope. And hope, after all, is our real national affliction.