If Kalvin Phillips had forgotten what it felt like to start a game of football, then this was one heck of a reminder.
A cauldron of noise inside Hampden Park, brewed up from a cocktail of alcohol and emotion. Bagpipes whistling through his ears as he lined up for the national anthems.
Welcome back, mate. At least there was no danger Phillips had forgotten the words to 'God Save The King', even if he couldn't hear himself think.
That's because, unlike his club manager, Gareth Southgate still believes there is some value in picking the midfielder. So here he was, striding out for the Three Lions to face Scotland, with the sum total of just six minutes plus stoppage time of action under his belt this season.
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Phillips has spent so much time on the bench at Manchester City, he might as well have his name engraved onto the back of his seat. Since making his last appearance for Leeds in 2022 before completing a £50million move to the Etihad, Phillips has started as many games for England as he has for the Pep Guardiola's side.
And that total amounts to four. In fact, the scenario has become so farcical at club level that last season, the number of trophies Phillips got his hands on was almost more than the number of times his name was on Guardiola's team sheet.
Granted, Guardiola has quite a pool of talent to choose from. But then again, so does Southgate these days when it comes to midfield.
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England's Jude Bellingham 'must be in Ballon d'Or chat' as masterclass destroys Scotland
So there was no escaping the fact Southgate's decision to go with Phillips made an absolute joke of his past claims to only consider players who were regular starters at club level. But Phillips seemed to feed off the atmosphere.
He was probably just glad to be having a kick about, to be honest! But this friendly between the oldest rivals in football, which was the opposite of what it said on the tin, meant more to Phillips than most of the rest of them out there.
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It was a test of his credentials when it comes to making Southgate's final squad for the Euros next summer. Not to mention a test of the faith Southgate had shown in him.
And it was one he just about passed. He won the ball, kept the ball and never wasted it. He got back to head clear a dangerous free kick in the first half and offered a comfort blanket to his defence.
He even checked the charge of Kieran Tierney with a sly tug of his arm, which the referee missed. Then he got booked for a late lunge on Che Adams, which sparked a melee.
He does the dirty work few appreciate, because Phillips is more about graft than glitz and glamour. Who knows if Guardiola was watching last night.
What we do know, though, is that Phillips will be back in his usual place behind the dugout this weekend. But even though his club doesn't need him, at least he knows that for some bizarre reason, his country still does.
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