Scotland have lost Kenny McLean for their European Championship qualifier against Russia in Moscow.
The midfielder has returned to Norwich after failing to overcome a minor injury issue.
Manager Steve Clarke, who dropped McLeans Norwich team-mate Grant Hanley and Rangers midfielder Ryan Jack at the weekend, said:It is always disappointing when you lose players in the group and immediately we have dropped Kenny McLean too.
It is another blow but a fantastic opportunity for someone else. Its part and parcel of worldwide football.
Clarke, who is also missing Scott McTominay through suspension, added:It is always disappointing to eliminate a participant so late in the week.
After Kenny reported, he had a tiny niggle – its not correct for me to state what it is, thats for his team to work out – were all pretty confident that Kenny would create it, however the last 24 hours it did not get any better, but it really got somewhat worse.
We made the decision to allow Kenny to return into Norwich.
The Scotland manager has already given up with Scotland, on automatic qualification nine points off second-placed Russia using four games.
Clarke is constructing to your play-offs at March but he will not sacrifice the capacity to acquire results.
No more free strikes, Clarke said at the Luzhniki Stadium. I want to pick up 12 points in the remaining four games. Obviously it is a rough one in Russia but there is no hits that are free.
We owe it to the thousand or so Tartan Army lovers that are coming as well to put on a great performance and hopefully go away with three things.
Every match you go into you want to get the best, that will be three factors. I want a good performance level, I would like a performance level in the four matches.
My belief is always that in case your performance level is great enough, then the points will follow
What it means:
Steve Clarke has admitted that Scotland will not meet the requirements via this group and the play-offs are the only path to Euro 2020. With four matches to go, Clarke should mold a team capable of playing in a means that could get effects, and going into the play-offs using confidence, of creating an understanding. Russia is the toughest and next of those four games. The head coach is demanding victories and says not one of the matches will be hits that are liberated.
Suspensions, injuries and players asking to be left out of his squad has hampered his efforts to try and construct a consistent method of enjoying and picking teams. Conceding nine goals from the past 3 games, despite all of the games being against Belgium, reveals Clarke should enhance his negative. The group have also just scored once in those three games and arent providing enough of a goal threat.
Scotland have players from the squad performing with their clubs and playing in the maximum level in England – transferring that is proving hard now. Have the chance. Scotland are under stress to be eligible awarded Hampden Park is a server place and also a meeting with England is about the cards in the finals if both qualify.
Artem Dzyuba is the captain and threat of Russia. He might have scored more and even scored the equaliser in Hampden. The striker is going to be a couple for the Scotland defence. With marking him will have a game, whoever is tasked.
Scotland head back to Hampden to get a match on Sunday against San Marino – . You have 19,000 spare seats and could fit all 33,000 residents of the nation inside Hampden. A lacklustre 2-0 triumph in March at Serravalle did nothing to construct confidence or momentum and has been Alex McLeishs final match in charge. Therell be an expectancy and urge to win and win big.
Russia vs Scotland is live on Sky Sports Football on Thursday pm
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