Steve Clarke provides update on Newcastle winger Ryan Fraser’s Scotland future
STEVE CLARKE insists Ryan Fraser has his work cut out to earn a Scotland recall after a controversial exit from the international ranks last month.
Fraser pulled out of the squad for the crucial fixture with Moldova, as he cited a calf issue, but was then pictured training with his Newcastle United team-mates.
The winger now faces a difficult task to manoeuvre himself back into Clarke’s thoughts ahead of the World Cup play-off fixtures next March.
And the Scotland boss has reaffirmed that he will only select players that show the required commitment to the cause as he sets his sights on a place in Qatar.
Clarke said: “I haven’t spoken to Ryan. Obviously he wasn’t involved through his own choice in the November games.
“To be honest I don’t think we missed him, I thought the team was good in both games so Ryan could have his work cut out to be back in the squad.
“That’s just the nature of the competition for places. It’s not a squad that you want to give up your place in lightly.
“It’s not about [him coming to explain himself]. Between international camps I tend not to pester my players. I leave them.
“They have to go their clubs, play for their clubs, do well for their clubs and they have to give me a choice in March. That’s just the way it is.
“It’s a conversation for March. He has to get into his team. He doesn’t play regularly at Newcastle he is in and out of the team.
“I wouldn’t like to think the whole year ends up speaking about someone who’s chosen not to be in the squad rather than the boys who have.
“Lyndon Dykes came to play when his ankle was hanging off. He came and he tried a training session.
“He wanted to fly to Moldova just to watch. He joined us in Glasgow and took part in a training session and five minutes into the session you could see the boy was injured.
“But he didn’t want to admit it because he wanted to be part of the team and he wanted to play against Denmark. That’s the type of player I want in the squad.”
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