Were it not for the scrappiest of winning goals, Scotland could well have shared the spoils with world champions Germany in their opening Euro 2016 qualifier.
In light of their Dortmund defeat, Gordon Strachan’s men can be backed at 9/5 to book a spot in their first European Championships since 1996, which is longer than the offerings on Hungary (7/10), Finland (5/4) and Israel (31/20).
Given their recent resurgence, such a standing in the betting seems a little unfair, with these factors supporting the Scots’ case to qualify for France 2016.
Their 2-1 reverse against Joachim Low’s side was the first Scotland had suffered in six matches.
This unbeaten sextet saw supposedly superior outfits Croatia, Norway and Poland swept aside, with all three unable to breach the tartan backline.
A proven ability to compete with sides of this stature should them well-placed to finish in either second or third in Group D, with the bronze medal spot enough to warrant a play-off spot at least under new qualifying regulations.
With Germany away out of the way, Scotland have already fulfilled their toughest fixture.
Georgia are almost certainly out of Group D contention, while Gibraltar never came into it, leaving the men from north of the border to scrap with Poland and the Republic of Ireland for the two qualifying spots Die Mannschaft won’t occupy.
All three are on a similar level, meaning goal difference could perceivably play a part and both the Poles and Eire can expect to lose by heavier margins in the backyard of the world’s finest footballing faction.
Akechi Anya’s strike at the Westfalenstadion ensured the Scots’ run of scoring on their travels stretched to seven matches.
Goalscoring prowess on the road gives Strachan’s charges the upper hand in their bid to progress to the tournament, judging by Ireland and Poland’s ultimately futile attempts to qualify for World Cup 2014.
Both failed to beat any of their rivals for a top-two berth on foreign shores, with the Republic unable to notch against Austria, Germany or Sweden, while their eastern European counterparts were equally hopeless in their attempts to score in England or Ukraine.