Steve Clarke confirms Hearts goalkeeper Craig Gordon will be Scotland's No.1 for World Cup qualifiers

Craig Gordon is officially Scotland’s No.1 goalkeeper once again after the squad was announced for next month’s World Cup qualifiers.

Wednesday, 25th August 2021, 9:09 am
Updated Wednesday, 25th August 2021, 9:09 am
Craig Gordon has been in excellent form since returning to Hearts last summer. Picture: SNS

Manager Steve Clarke decided to omit David Marshall after the former Celtic stopper fell down the pecking order at Derby, while fellow experienced competitor and ex-Hearts keeper John McLaughlin was absent due to a “little issue” as Rangers asked for him not to be selected.

The Tynecastle favourite will now be the oldest and therefore most experienced player in the squad by a full eight years with Aberdeen’s Declan Gallagher the only other player over the age of 30.

It’s a just reward for Gordon who has been excellent since returning to his boyhood club last summer after finding himself on the bench at Celtic Park.

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Clarke praised Gordon’s ambition as he made it clear he would be first-choice heading into the triple-header against Denmark, Moldova and Austria.

The manager said: “Craig just wanted to play football and he felt that leaving Celtic was the best way to do that.

“I had spoken to Craig a few times over the years and he has always known what I think of him as a goalkeeper. One of the conversations we had he actually said to me ‘maybe I’ll have to leave to get first team football to get involved with Scotland again.’

“That’s what he wanted, to be involved. Now the way it’s fallen, in this camp for this squad, he’ll be the No.1 goalkeeper. And I look forward to seeing him play.

“He’ll work with [new goalkeeping coach] Chris Woods who will be a good addition to the squad.”

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