JUDGING by the talk in the England camp this week, players who were not even born when Gazza performed magic against the Scots at Euro 96 know this will not be any ordinary game.

Just as a wintry pitch might be considered a leveller in a cup tie between two teams at opposite ends of the league, the sheer weight of footballing history between two neighbouring nations negates the gulf in class on the team-sheet.

In my view, but for Andy Robertson or Kieran Tierney, there isn’t a member of the Scottish squad who would challenge seriously for a place in the England team.

Were this game run on a computer simulation the result would go in England’s favour 49 times out of 50 – but on an electrically-charged evening at Wembley the normal rules will not apply. This could, to paraphrase Marcus Rashford’s words from earlier this week, be a game that stays with the players for the rest of their career.

In normal circumstances, Gareth Southgate may look to make minimal alterations to a team that impressed in the blazing heat against Croatia last weekend. Again, this is an evening that calls for a different way of thinking.

Scotland’s best hope is to knock England out of their stride early on and hope that age-old accusation of superiority complex follows them out on to the pitch.

It will be fast, it will be frenetic, and the difference maker on the day will be the player able to produce that little moment of genius at a time of chaos.

We saw it with Wales - as Gareth Bale (dreadful penalty aside) and Aaron Ramsey found that extra level of quality to turn a hard-working performance into a winning one against Turkey.

North of the border there is a public clamour for Scotland boss Steve Clarke to add more energy in the form of Nathan Patterson, Billy Gilmour or Che Adams. The match fitness of Tierney is also an unknown after he dropped off the squad list prior to their defeat against the Czechs.

It all adds up to an intense and physical match which will be won by a moment of brilliance, rather than the tactical chess game England played out against the Croats.

It is hard not to hark back to Euro 96 and that balletic finish Paul Gascoigne produced and not point to it screaming: “Do that, only in 2021!”

Be it Rashford, Phil Foden, Raheem Sterling, Jadon Sancho, or my own personal choice, Jack Grealish, there are a handful of players capable of producing such a moment of inspiration. In order for that to work, however, Gareth Southgate may have to open up the midfield which worked so well last time out, leave his two defensive men – presumably, Kalvin Phillips and Declan Rice – to hold the fort, and a number 10 to drift into exactly the sort of space Gazza exploited all those years ago.

Southgate also faces a big decision at the back. Harry Maguire is fit again but Tyrone Mears would consider himself mighty unlucky to be dropped – which is not a sentence I expected to write a week ago.

For me, so long as the England boss is satisfied that the United man is 100 per cent, he starts. The sooner he can play alongside John Stones and re-establish that partnership for (hopefully) the knockout rounds, the better.

I would imagine that Southgate will also go for a traditional left-back in Luke Shaw or Ben Chilwell rather than the experimental Kieran Trippier, as Scotland are almost certainly going to be making changes on their right flank, given most onlookers thought Stephen O’Donnell had an absolute shocker last time out.

Certainly, with Robertson and – potentially – Tierney stepping out on the left, whoever plays right-back is going to have to have their wits about them.

Thanks to last weekend’s result there is not as much pressure on England to beat the Scots as there was at Euro 96 and part of the reason that game is remembered so fondly was the incredible release of tension which had built up around Terry Venables’ side at the time.

It would be wonderful to think, however, that this game could create memories which are still so vivid in my mind 25 years later when, with a bit of luck, I’ll be enjoying my retirement.