JOHN CARVER has revealed he tore his CALF celebrating Scotland's penalty shootout win over Serbia.
The Scotland coach was seen on crutches leaving the team hotel in Belgrade yesterday hours after the dramatic play-off final win that ended our 22 year wait to reach a major tournament.
The former Newcastle boss says he always knew David Marshall would save Aleksander Mitrovic's spot-kick after studying footage of the Fulham striker with goalie coach Stevie Woods.
But as the celebrations began all around him, Carver says he felt like he had been SHOT as his calf tore while running onto the pitch.
He said:"It was pretty embarrassing. The adrenaline is flowing and I knew Mitrovic was going to miss the penalty.
"I sat next to Stevie Woods on the plane and I watched him miss a couple, so I was concentrating on that area.
"We were on our marks ready to go and when David Marshall produced the wonderful save that was it the starting gun and off we went.
"Within five steps, the goalie coach tried to trip me up, Steven Reid jumped on my back and then the next thing I felt like I had been shot in the calf.
"I was in so much pain and haven't felt anything like it.
"The performance director then tried to jump on my back and then I saw the guys celebrating but the pain was incredible.
"It still is and it is uncomfortable. Despite that it was an incredible feeling to be part of it.
"You see how much it means to the nation, especially in the current times.
"Any big tournament needs a team like Scotland and hopefully the way it is going we will have crowds in.
"Yes I am English but I am a professional and I have given everything for Scotland – including a torn calf."
Carver worked with Clarke under Bobby Robson at Newcastle and says he will always be grateful to the former Killie boss for giving him a route back into football.
Speaking to Sky Sports, he added: "We met in 1999 when I was made first-team coach at Newcastle and we developed a friendship.
"We have kept in touch and then an opportunity came around when Alex Dyer stayed with Kilmarnock.
"Steve would ask me to watch games as when you are out of work it is a lonely place.
"He said I might be needed for September, October and November and I looked at Norway, Serbia, Czech Republic and Israel and did a few reports for him.
"All of a sudden he picked up the phone to join him and the rest is history."
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