Improved Celtic man could finally get the chance he deserves after Friday night action

By John McGinley

November 12, 2021

Celtic defender Anthony Ralston could get a late call up to the Scotland national team as Steve Clarke ponders his squad ahead of Monday’s match against Denmark.

Rangers player Nathan Patterson picked up a booking tonight in the 2-0 win away to Moldova, meaning he won’t be available for the Hampden clash.

Clarke now has until Sunday evening to make changes to his squad for the qualifying encounter. A point could be needed if Scotland want to be seeded for the playoff process next March.

Photo by Steve Welsh/Getty Images

The Scotland manager is likely to start Stephen O’Donnell against the Danes regardless of Ralston’s presence, but surely the Celtic man is finally about to get the call up his form deserves?

Ralston was conspicuous by his absence when Clarke announced his squad. The Hoops right-back has been excellent so far this season, scoring four goals and assisting four more.

More than that, his overall play has been integral to many Celtic performances. That was highlighted in the match against Dundee at Dens Park last week when his crossing and efforts in the final third pushed the Bhoys on to victory.

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Given Scotland have found decent success with limited players such as O’Donnell in the team, Ralston is primed to take that next step in his career and become a Scotland international.

I’m not alone here, former Tartan Army boss Craig Levein is now calling on him to get a call up too.

Even getting involved with the squad this time around, getting a bit of training and introducing himself to the Scotland staff could set him up for being outright selected for the massive playoffs to come.

Unbelievably, Ralston could go from the verge of a Celtic exit to a World Cup in just over 18 months. And a big step towards that could come this weekend.

In other news, John Hartson is excited about the “almost forgotten” Celtic player set to be used by Ange.