Cyprus boss Temuri Ketsbaia believes Scotland have effectively qualified for Euro 2024 as he prepares for their meeting in Larnaca on Friday.
Steve Clarke’s side are top of Group A with 12 points from their first four fixtures, including wins over Spain and Norway.
Ketsbaia’s side have yet to pick up a point in three games and lost 3-0 at Hampden Park in March.
The former Newcastle, Wolves and Dundee forward said: “I believe they have already qualified.
“I don’t know if they will win the group but they will be first or second.
“I have seen the four games and they have been better than all their opponents.
“They have 12 points from four games, they are a good team in a very difficult group.
“I’m not surprised at this. When you see the quality of their players – many of them from the Premier League – and they have a very good coach who has so much experience and he has done a great job.
“I am not surprised they are top of the section – what they have done is not a surprise.
“It’s not as hot as it was a few weeks ago, but we still hope that the conditions affect the Scots more than they do us.
“So we have a difficult match here, because the Scots deserve to be first so far. We’ve prepared as well as can and want to make a good game in a full stadium.
“We have no points so far, but we hope to start now.
“We’ve maybe been more defensive in our early games because of the opposition. Here at home we played more open against Georgia, when we deserved more from the game. Maybe it will be our night this time.”