Jason Holt: Strachan right to omit me from Scotland squad

Rangers' Jason Holt has been in excellent form this season. Picture: SNS
Rangers' Jason Holt has been in excellent form this season. Picture: SNS
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Jason Holt admits Gordon Strachan was right to leave him out of his Scotland squad - because he is not yet ready for international action.

The Ibrox midfielder has been in impressive form for the Light Blues this season, hitting 10 goals in 34 appearances.

His performances have helped Mark Warburton’s team open up a commanding 14-point lead over Friday’s Ladbrokes Championship opponents Falkirk and put Gers on course for their top-flight return.

But his displays were not enough to convince Strachan to issue an invite when he named two 19-man squads for this month’s friendly double-header with the Czech Republic and Denmark.

That caused anger amongst the Light Blues legions - who were also unhappy that Ibrox skipper Lee Wallace was overlooked while Hibernian midfielder John McGinn was called up, even though his side are 17 points adrift in the promotion race.

However, Holt confessed he still has some way to go before he can stake a realistic claim for a dark blue jersey.

The 23-year-old said: “If you ask any player then they will have aspirations of playing for their country and I am no different.

“All you can do is keep working hard, trying to do well and you just never know.

“There are a lot of good players in that squad, players playing in the top leagues in England so I think I still have a long way to go.

“There have been so many different opinions and football is a game based on opinions so there is no getting away from that.

“When you see your name getting thrown about like that it’s flattering but I don’t think you can look too much into it, it’s people’s opinion and you can only do what you can do on the pitch.”

For now, Holt will have to focus on helping Rangers achieve their main aim of a top-flight return.

The former Hearts youngster missed out on last year’s celebrations with the Jambos after dropping out of Robbie Neilson’s plans before being sent to Sheffield United on loan.

But he now hopes to enjoy this season’s party, with his new team just four wins away from sealing the second-tier crown.

“Wherever you are and wherever you are playing your football you always want to thrive and I want to do that,” said Holt.

“I’m here as a Rangers player and I want to finish the season strongly.

“Last season after I left Hearts to go to Sheffield United was the same.

“I was over the moon for the Hearts lads that day they lifted the trophy. They had been my team-mates, some of them for a long time, and I was just really happy for them, the coaching staff and the manager that they managed to win the title.

“There was no feeling of frustration from my part.

“But hopefully I’ve now got my own experience to look forward to. However, there’s still a lot of hard work to be done because nothing is done yet.”

There is also the small matter of next month’s William Hill Scottish Cup semi-final with Old Firm rivals Celtic to look forward to.

And Holt would like to see the promotion battle wrapped up before their Hampden clash comes around on April 17.

“The quicker you win a league the better to be honest but nothing is done and we just need to keep working hard to try and get to our aim which is promotion,” he said.

“But that isn’t done yet so we’ll keep fighting and keep going strong until we reach our objective.”

READ MORE - Rumour Mill: Celtic eye McGinn | Warburton eyes more loans | Hibs return to Hampden

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