Spurs star Hutton named in Scotland squad to face Holland and Iceland
17 March 2009 12:07
Tottenham defender Alan Hutton has been named in the Scotland squad for the World cup qualifying double-header against Holland and Iceland.
The former Rangers right back has been sidelined with a foot injury and made his last competitive appearance in the Scots' 1-0 friendly defeat against Argentina in November.
Derby winger Gary Teale is included in the 26-man party, earning a first call-up since George Burley's first game in charge against Croatia 12 months ago.
Teale was a substitute in the 1-1 draw at Hampden but was not picked in any of Burley's subsequent squads.
Sunderland goalkeeper Craig Gordon is also included, despite having played only one game for his club since November.
Gordon lost his first-team place at the Stadium of Light after suffering an ankle injury and has been unable to reclaim it since.
As expected, Birmingham striker James McFadden has been ruled out through injury, along with Celtic winger Shaun Maloney.
In with a shout: Craig Gordon (centre) is included despite a lack of action
Aberdeen forward Lee Miller also misses out through injury while Cardiff midfielder Gavin Rae, 31, keeps his place in the squad after his surprise call-up for last month's get-together at St Andrews.
Rae earned his first call-up for two years 12 months ago, coming off the bench against Croatia.
He also started May's defeat in the Czech Republic and was in the squad for August's goalless draw with Northern Ireland but was not included for any of Scotland's three Group Nine qualifiers so far.
Burley has led them to second place in the table ahead of the March 28 trip to Amsterdam and the April 1 clash with Iceland at Hampden.
Burley explained the importance of the double-header meant he was keen to name a 'settled' squad with few surprises.
He said: 'There are no experiments. We have two very important World Cup games and it's a settled squad. The only new addition is Gary Teale.
'He has been in excellent form with Derby County this season and he has pushed his way back into the squad. He gives us pace, which we have maybe been lacking, and he is a natural wide player.'
Burley is also hoping Hutton will be fit enough to take part in both games. Hutton has been sidelined with a stress fracture of his foot but is set to make his comeback in a match for Spurs reserves on Monday.
If he comes through that game unscathed, Hutton will make the trip to Amsterdam.
'He has been training for the last week and I spoke to (Spurs boss) Harry Redknapp and Alan,' said Burley. 'He has a reserve game on Monday, which is ideal for Alan to play in and assess his fitness.
'We've not closed the door - he's in the squad. We will keep our fingers crossed the game goes well and then he will join us.'
The Scotland boss also had words of encouragement for Rangers youngster John Fleck.
Burley had considered selecting the teenager but the 17-year-old has been named in the Under 21 squad instead, bypassing the Under 19s.
'It's progression,' said Burley. 'At 17, to get into the Under 21 squad is tremendous. His time will come.'
However, Burley was less forthcoming about Gordon's prospects ofstarting in Amsterdam.
The national team boss refused to be drawn onwhether the 26-year-old was still his first-choice keeper.
'We'll getthem together and then pick the team,' said Burley. 'They will all have the opportunity to get in the team. You have a team in your mindbut you look at things and there is another week or so before the game.
'Everyone in the squad has a chance of playing, it's as simple asthat. We have three very good goalkeepers in the squad so I'm in a very fortunate position.'
Celtic midfielder Barry Robson and Birmingham striker Garry O'Connor are also injured.
Scotland squad for World Cup qualifying Group Nine matches with Holland (March 28) and Iceland (April 1):
Gordon (Sunderland), McGregor (Rangers), Marshall (Norwich); Alexander (Burnley), Barr (Falkirk), Berra (Wolves), Broadfoot (Rangers), Caldwell (Celtic), Hutton (Spurs), McAllister (Bristol City), McManus (Celtic), Naysmith (Sheffield United), Weir (Rangers); Brown (Celtic), Commons (Derby), Ferguson (Rangers), Fletcher (Manchester United), Hartley (Celtic), Morrison (West Brom), Rae (Cardiff), Teale (Derby); Clarkson (Motherwell), Fletcher (Hibernian), Iwelumo (Wolves), McCormack (Cardiff), Miller (Rangers).