Celtic pair Craig Gordon and Scott Bain have been left out of yet another Scotland squad today.
Gordon hasn’t played for Celtic since our 5-0 win over Partick Thistle at Parkhead last mid-week. That was his first game since August’s 4-1 victory in AIK too. Bain, meanwhile, has been struggling with a knock, but still hasn’t played since the 4-3 defeat to Cluj at Celtic Park in mid-August.
Both men missed the squad to face Russia and Belgium last month too, although Bain was most certainly injured at that point. Ever since Steve Clarke was appointed Scotland manager, however, Bain and Gordon have both yet to feature for their country.
Bain was initially called up to Scotland’s squad for the games against Cyprus and Belgium. That was Clarke’s first ever Scotland squad selection. But despite that, he still didn’t play a single minute.
Gordon has been fit all throughout Clarke’s tenure, however, and once again has missed out. He hasn’t played for Scotland at all throughout the Euro 2020 qualifying campaign.
Celtic’s Scotland shot-stoppers need a boost
Gordon and Bain are both below Fraser Forster in the Celtic pecking order. And it seems to be having a negative effect on their Scotland chances too.
Everyone accepts that Gordon is the likely number two to Forster. Therefore, if he isn’t making Clarke’s squads, you can’t see Bain doing so either even if he was fit.
Clarke has instead been selecting goalkeepers who have been playing regularly with their clubs. This time around, he’s gone for David Marshall, Jon McLaughlin, and Craig MacGillivray. This is the same trio selected for the previous qualifiers against Russia and Belgium respectively.
Clarke certainly seems to favour his shot-stoppers who have been playing regularly. Gordon in particular has a big decision to make on his future if things stay the same. There’s nothing wrong with the former Hearts and Sunderland man’s fitness.
However, this is now the third consecutive squad under Clarke in which Gordon hasn’t featured.
At this stage in his career, he has to have a think about what he wants to do in his twilight years as a player. Gordon doesn’t seem the kind to want to pack things in and settle for a squad role. It could be a case of watch this space after missing another international squad.
For Bain, he just needs to get himself fit before thinking about anything else. But if either man wants to get back into Scotland contention, consistent game-time looks a necessity judging by Clarke’s selections.