Rebecca McAllister aiming to be first female Hearts player to be capped for Scotland
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The 19-year-old midfielder was given a late call-up for the first time in September when the national team beat Faroe Islands 6-0 in a World Cup qualifier, but she didn’t get onto the pitch. She has been included, along with Leah Eddie of Hibs, in Pedro Martínez Losa’s squad for a training camp in Cadiz, Spain between 7-15 November. It will include friendlies against Panama on November 12 and Venezuela on November 14, with younger players expected to be given an opportunity to impress.
Eddie will also be hoping to add to her two caps for Scotland after making her national team debut against Northern Ireland last year. The promising Hibs defender has also had a strong season so far, reaching 50 appearances for the club last month.
McAllister, who has been capped at under-15, 16, 17 and 19 level, has had a brilliant season for Hearts and scored a stunning winner against Motherwell on Sunday in SWPL1, helping her team consolidate fourth place. She played for Scotland Under-19s against Kosovo, Estonia and Kazakhstan in April and was drafted into the senior team for a last-minute flight to the Faroes in September after injuries ruled out Chloe Arthur and Sam Kerr.
Speaking to the Dumbarton and Vale of Leven Reporter, McAllister explained how surprised and proud she was to get that late call-up. “I had just woken up and I was about to make myself a bowl of cereal for breakfast and my phone went. Pedro said he’d liked the bits he’d seen of me playing with the Scotland under-19s just before the summer and he was impressed and wanted to give me an opportunity.
“Luckily, I wasn’t doing anything that day and I was able to go to the airport at about 4pm and get a flight out. It was a big surprise and a massive moment, a very proud moment, and something that I didn’t think would happen anytime soon, but it just shows that hard work pays off.
“There were some nerves because I was meeting up with players I’d previously seen playing on TV or play live but I think because it happened so quickly it didn’t really sink in until I arrived at the hotel. Everyone was great though and welcoming and it was quite easy to feel like you fit in quickly. Even just the little things like your strip being there in the changing room, doing the warm-up and then standing on the touchline singing the national anthems – you really feel part of the team then and it was a great feeling.”
McAllister, who hails from Dumbarton, came through the youth set-up at Celtic before parting ways with the club in the summer when her contract expired. In June, she signed a permanent deal with Hearts, where she had spent part of last season on loan.