11 Mar Six new players Alex McLeish could call into his Scotland squad
Alex McLeish names the first Scotland squad of his second spell in charge of the national team on Monday.
Interim boss Malky Mackay introduced several new players for his sole game at the helm, against Holland in November, including Jordan Archer, Paul Hanlon, Ryan Jack, Jason Cummings, Graeme Shinnie and Ryan Christie.
But McLeish looks set to bring more newcomers into the ranks ahead of friendlies against Costa Rica and Hungary later this month.
Here, Press Association Sport looks at six players who could be called up.
The Hearts goalkeeper helped his team keep eight consecutive clean sheets during the winter months and the 30-year-old former Bradford and Burton player has been tipped for a call-up. With Craig Gordon injured and David Marshall on the sidelines for Hull and Scott Bain lacking games, the Edinburgh-born stopper is well-placed to come in.
The Aberdeen defender has been a revelation this season after an unhappy loan spell at Ayr last term. The centre-back impressed Dons boss Derek McInnes in Scotland Under-21s’ victory over Holland in early September and he has never looked back after being drafted in for a 1-0 win at Motherwell later that month. Has signed two contract extensions this season after Hull had several bids rejected in January. The powerful 21-year-old has also scored two goals during his impressive breakthrough campaign, including a spectacular strike against Kilmarnock.
Another Under-21 international, Souttar has developed well in recent months alongside Scotland regular Christophe Berra in the Hearts defence. The former Dundee United player’s technical ability has never been in doubt but he has improved in the air and been more reliable under pressure.
The former Celtic player could join fellow Hibernian midfielder John McGinn in the international fold after a consistent run of games and form having shaken off a persistent groin complaint. The 25-year-old has the touch, passing ability and composure to make the step up. He no doubt impressed the watching McLeish on Friday with an impeccable performance in Hibs’ 2-0 derby win over Hearts.
McLeish has already confirmed the Lancaster-born Manchester United midfielder will be included after rejecting the advances of England to pledge his international future to his father’s native land. Jose Mourinho continued showing his faith in the 21-year-old by picking him in his XI for Saturday’s 2-1 win over Liverpool after recent starts against the likes of Sevilla and Chelsea. The holding midfielder could be a key addition following Scott Brown’s international retirement.
The 21-year-old has been the star man for runaway Ladbrokes Championship leaders St Mirren and won himself a January move to Celtic before being instantly loaned back. The two-footed winger has pace, trickery and finishing prowess with 13 goals this season. Morgan has been a stand-out for Scotland Under-21s in recent games and could win a promotion. The wide player missed St Mirren’s victory over Dunfermline on Saturday with tonsillitis but is expected to be fit for the following weekend.