14 Mar Hibernian Dylan McGeouch delighted by Scotland call-up
Hibernian midfielder Dylan McGeouch knew his Scotland hopes were on the line during Friday’s Edinburgh derby.
McGeouch played a starring role as Hibs beat Hearts 2-0 in front of Scotland manager Alex McLeish and his performance ensured he made a late charge into the international squad.
The 25-year-old represented Scotland throughout the age groups but has now achieved his first senior call-up for friendlies against Costa Rica and Hungary.
On McLeish’s visit to Easter Road, McGeouch said: “I was aware he was at the game. Obviously you’ve got that pressure as well and it’s an Edinburgh derby so it all comes into play.
“But it was a good game and a good result and I’m just thankful I made the squad. It’s a massive achievement for me and my family, we are delighted.
“I’m really looking forward to it and hopefully I can go and express myself and do well. It’s my first call-up but I hope there’s many more.”
With 35 appearances, McGeouch has already played more games this season than during any of his first three campaigns as a Hibs player, all of which were spent in the Ladbrokes Championship.
So the former Celtic player had not harboured much hope of being included under Gordon Strachan.
“With the stop-start seasons I have had, you don’t put yourself in the bracket of being looked at by Scotland,” he said. “At the start of the season, my main aim was just to get a run of games.
“I have had wee spells here and there but obviously not been consistent enough with game time. Now I have got rid of the niggling injuries and put a good run together, I have probably seen the best of myself.
“There were no major injuries, it was just muscle soreness and pulling hamstrings, groins, calfs. It is probably harder to take getting back and pulling out again, it was a frustration for the manager and myself and a difficult time.
“I went down to see a specialist in London that was recommended by (Robert) Snodgrass and I have been to see him a few times. I have a great relationship with him and he works with the physios here on the phone.
“A lot of work has been put in behind the scenes with the medical staff so big thanks to them for keeping me on the pitch and the strengthening programmes. The hard work is paying off and it’s been great to get the rewards. ”
McGeouch’s international recognition could attract suitors with his future beyond the summer uncertain, although he remains in talks with Hibs.
“Talks are still ongoing,” he said. “But I’m just enjoying playing and just concentrating on game to game.
“I’m enjoying my time here, had a lot of highs and it’s been a great season. But obviously I need to get the best deal I can for myself at this time in my career.
“I’m still a young age, I don’t really want to chase the money. My time here has been great and I have had an excellent relationship with the fans and the club. I wouldn’t just take the first offer that came.”