George Burley was confirmed as the new Scotland manager today and said: 'To be asked to be manager of my country is a great honour.'Burley left Southampton to take the job, and the 51-year-old's first match will be the friendly against Croatia on March 26. He has signed a contract taking him through to the European Championships in 2012. 'As a manager it's a great honour,' Burley said. 'It's something you want to do, given the opportunity. 'I never thought it would ever happen. 'When Scotland showed interest there were so many outstanding candidates with huge experience. 'It's something I'm really looking to. 'I feel I'm ready for it.' Burley has set his target as taking Scotland to the 2010 World Cup finals. The qualification campaign begins in September. Scotland have not qualified for a major tournament since the 1998 World Cup, but they came close in their Euro 2008 campaign under Alex McLeish, when defeat to Italy in November ended their hopes. 'As a Scotsman you've got a vision to do well for your country,' he said. 'This job gives the opportunity to try to do something, to try to get to the World Cup finals, and as a manager you couldn't ask for more than that. 'There are tingles going through me of excitement, thinking about it. 'The previous managers have done absolutely tremendously. 'Everyone remembers the last game where it was so close to qualifying. Now the dream is to qualify for the World Cup.' Burley claimed the recent improvement in Scotland's fortunes has instilled a conviction that the team can go one better and take their place at the World Cup in two years' time. He said at a press conference shown by Sky Sports News: 'It's not going to be easy but there is belief now. 'I think that is another part of the job, the country believing and believing we are going somewhere.' The 51-year-old believes his greatest attribute is his management of players who he has inspired at a number of clubs including Ipswich, Hearts and Derby. He said: 'I've got a fair bit of success with clubs, not spending a great deal of money but bringing the best out of players - man-management. 'And I'll say (to players and managers) - let's go for it, give it our best shot. 'There are some very good teams in the group starting with Macedonia in September but I think we'll all be ready for it. 'I'll give it 110%. 'Thanks to the SFA. The candidates were so many, I was surprised to get the job but maybe they saw something that will help Scotland.' Burley, asked what qualities made him suited to the job, replied: 'I am passionate about football, it is a trait of Scottish managers, and it is important to keep that and harness it. 'We are very close knit together in Scotland. That's how the team has done so well in recent years. 'There are so many top-class Scottish managers, so many who are capable and could have done the job, but it is very important for me and for Scotland that everyone pulls together. 'The (World Cup) campaign is two-and-a-half years and my aim is to keep everyone focused to give us our best chance. 'I want to put pressure on myself. If I could get Scotland to qualify for the World Cup that would be me.....and then take it from there. 'There is a great base from Walter (Smith) and Alex (McLeish), a good footing, a great squad and the atmosphere is absolutely terrific. 'The challenge is to go that one step further and qualify. If you don't want to put yourself under pressure then don't do it.' Burley feels that the time is right for him to move into international management. 'I have had 16 years as a (club) manager and I feel I am ready for it,' he said.