Buckie Thistle goalie Lee Herbert thanked the fans who turned out to watch him represent Scotland.
The Buckie keeper was between the sticks as the Scottish Under-18 Schoolboys were beaten 2-0 by England in the Centenary Shield at Inverurie Locos’ Harlaw Park.
Herbert was the only north-east representative in the squad and did himself proud.
As well as having friends and family in the near 1,500-strong crowd, the 18-year-old was cheered on by plenty of Buckie fans who made the trip to Inverurie.
Herbert said: “It’s a disappointing result because we dominated possession for the whole game. In the second half we probably looked like the only team that was going to score.
“The lads battled away but we just have to look forward to the next match against the Republic of Ireland.
“I had my family and some friends at the game and a lot of Buckie Thistle supporters came down as well.
“That means a lot to me and I’m really thankful to everyone who turned out to support me.
“When we’ve had warm-up games which have been down south it’s been a lot of travelling for me, so it was great to have it closer to home.
“With the goals there was nothing I could do and I was pleased with how I did. But no matter how well you’ve done, you’re always going to be upset if you’ve lost 2-0.
“There are things to work on and I can learn from the occasion.
“It’s a whole new experience spending time in hotels before the game, and having a lot of pre-match preparation is new to me because you don’t get that in the Highland League.
“I’m looking forward to the next two games (against the Republic of Ireland and Wales) and hopefully I’ll be able to play in them as well.”
Schoolboy international football returned to Harlaw Park three years after the ground hosted a Centenary Shield fixture against Wales.
Scotland manager Craig Johnstone was delighted to be back in Inverurie and felt his side deserved something from the match.
He added: “It was harsh on the guys, in Belfast two weeks ago (1-0 loss to Northern Ireland) we didn’t do ourselves justice. But that was 90 minutes of football that we know we’re capable of.
“Unfortunately, you don’t always get what you deserve because the better team didn’t win the game.
“It’s been brilliant being up in Inverurie, I was here three years ago and again it was fantastic.
“Everything the Garioch Sports Trust and Inverurie Locos do is excellent and I can’t speak highly enough of them. If I had my way I’d come back here for every game.”
England led on 13 minutes when the ball broke for winger Owen WINDSOR on the edge of the box and his left-foot strike smacked the right post, then the left before going into the net.
On 37 minutes, Josh Mulligan beat two players for Scotland but his strike from 20 yards bounced back off the crossbar.
In the second period, Ben Greenwood’s shot clipped the top of the bar. Soon after, the same player’s corner was tipped on to the woodwork by Herbert before he clutched Windsor’s follow-up.
The Scots dominated the second half without managing to create many clear chances.
Herbert was rarely tested but in injury time sub Declan ARBOR lashed home from 12 yards after a counter-attack.