Oli McBurnie: Scotland boss Steve Clarke fine with striker playing friendly after squad withdrawal


Scotland and Sheffield United striker Oli McBurnie
McBurnie is yet to score in nine outings for Scotland
Venue: Hampden Date: Friday, 4 September Kick-off: 19:45 BST
Coverage: Listen on BBC Radio Scotland 810MW/DAB/online; live text commentary on the BBC Sportwebsite & app; highlights on BBC Scotland channel from 22:30

Scotland manager Steve Clarke says there is a “world of difference” between Oli McBurnie appearing in a pre-season friendly and playing competitive internationals.

The Sheffield United striker withdrew from the Scotland squad on Sunday but came on at half-time in a warm-up game against Derby on Tuesday.

Clarke said the matter had been discussed with United manager Chris Wilder and the Scotland medical team, explaining that “it made sense” for McBurnie to return to his club.

“I spoke to Chris Wilder at the end of last week and he told me Oli hadn’t been training because he had a laceration in his foot that had become infected and that he wouldn’t be fit enough to play at international level,” said Clarke.

“Chris is one of the most honest men in football and we had a good discussion about where Oli was at.

“People have to remember there’s a world of difference between getting some minutes in a pre-season friendly and preparing for an international double header. After discussions with the medical team and sports science team it made sense to everyone for Oli to stay at Sheffield and work on his fitness.”

Scotland host Israel on Friday as a new Nations League campaign begins, followed by a visit to Prague to play the Czech Republic next Tuesday.



BBC