Steve Clarke has named his squad for September’s Nations League matches; Scotland face a double-header against Ukraine either side of a home match against the Republic of Ireland at Hampden Park; Ukraine lead the group by a point from Scotland
Kieran Tierney (L) and Ryan Fraser (R) are back in Steve Clarke’s Scotland squad
Arsenal left-back Kieran Tierney and Newcastle United’s Ryan Fraser have been recalled to the Scotland squad for their upcoming Nations League matches.
Midfielders Ryan Jack of Rangers and Norwich’s Kenny McLean return, as does Ryan Porteous of Hibernian.
However, captain Andy Robertson, striker Ross Stewart and defenders John Souttar and Liam Cooper miss out due to injury and fitness, while there’s no place for Allan Campbell or Lewis Ferguson in the 25-man squad.
Grant Hanley plus injured duo Jacob Brown and Jon McLaughlin have withdrawn from the group, with the latter being replaced by club team-mate Robby McCrorie.
Scotland host Ukraine and the Republic of Ireland next week before a trip to Poland for what could be a decisive match against Ukraine, who lead their Nations League group by a point.
Scotland squad in full
Goalkeepers: Craig Gordon (Hearts), Liam Kelly (Motherwell), Robby McCrorie (Rangers).
Defenders: Jack Hendry (Cremonese), Aaron Hickey (Brentford), Scott McKenna (Nottingham Forest), Nathan Patterson (Everton), Ryan Porteous (Hibernian), Anthony Ralston (Celtic), Greg Taylor (Celtic), Kieran Tierney (Arsenal).
Midfielders: Stuart Armstrong (Southampton), Billy Gilmour (Brighton), Ryan Jack (Rangers), John McGinn (Aston Villa), Callum McGregor (Celtic), Kenny McLean (Norwich City), Scott McTominay (Manchester United), David Turnbull (Celtic).
Strikers: Che Adams (Southampton), Ryan Christie (Bournemouth), Lyndon Dykes (Queens Park Rangers), Ryan Fraser (Newcastle United).
Clarke: Losing Robertson out a blow | Fraser return explained
Scotland head coach Steve Clarke insists they will find the right system to cope with the loss of Andrew Robertson:
“It’s always disappointing to lose key players. Andy is a key player, captain and a big character for us within the squad.
“As you lose one top quality left-back you get another one back with Kieran [Tierney] being available this time so I suppose that softens the blow.
“You want all your good players there, but the poorer side of international selection is you know you’re going to lose players through injury and you’ve just got to deal with it.
“It gives myself and my staff lots of things to think about and hopefully come up with a way that we can show we can play with one, both or either.
“There’s been no real process with Ryan [Fraser]. I think I said in March when he missed the two friendlies that we’d had a chat.
“Ryan wasn’t playing for Newcastle at the time and I said at the time if he’s fit and available and playing well for Newcastle then he’s definitely one that we have to consider for selection.
“That’s why he’s in the squad this time because he’s fit and available and playing well for Newcastle.
“We’ve also got Ryan Jack and Kenny McLean back in the squad, two experienced players that we missed over the summer.”
Could Fraser shine for Scotland again?Sky Sports News reporter Gordon Duncan said:
“Fraser’s return could see the attacker make his first international appearance in 11 months after what’s been a tricky spell.
“He was a regular in the squad, however, withdrew from the group last November and was pictured training with Newcastle the very next day.
“Understandably that didn’t go down well with the Scotland fans and it certainly didn’t go down well with head coach Steve Clarke either.
“Fast forward to the next squad in March and Fraser was left out. Clarke confirmed they had spoken and the player had apologised, but still at that point he wasn’t included in any squads.
“It has been almost a year now and he is back doing well this season so the Scotland boss has picked him. It’s up to the player to win back over the fans and put in a performance during those matches against Ukraine and the Republic of Ireland.”