Lawrence Shankland's Scotland situation clarified after the Hearts captain missed the win over Cyprus
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Hearts captain Lawrence Shankland remains with the Scotland squad and is eager to be involved in Tuesday’s friendly against England at Hampden Park. The 28-year-old is fit and hoping to make the substitutes’ bench for a game which marks the 150th anniversary of the oldest fixture in world football.
Shankland travelled to Cyprus for Friday night’s European Championship qualifier but was not included in Scotland’s 23-man squad on the night. National coach Steve Clarke took a 24-man group to Larnaca but only 23 can be named on the teamsheet – 11 starters and 12 substitutes – as per UEFA rules.
Shankland was the one to miss out on that occasion. That prompted concern among some Hearts supporters that their talisman may have picked up an injury, but those fears are unfounded.
The Southampton striker Ché Adams started in attack for Scotland and was replaced by Queens Park Rangers’ Lyndon Dykes after 67 minutes. Clarke’s side recorded a comfortable 3-0 victory over Cyprus with goals from Scott McTominay, Ryan Porteous and John McGinn. They sit proudly top of Group A with five wins from five and are on the brink of qualifying for Euro 2024.
Shankland is now pushing to be included in the 23 against England. Having scored five goals in nine games for Hearts this season, the 28-year-old is in good form and will want to showcase his capabilities at international level. He holds five Scotland caps so far and has one goal for his country. That came back in October 2019 in a 6-0 victory over San Marino. Other forwards in contention are Bournemouth’s Ryan Christie and Millwall’s Kevin Nisbet.