James McFadden believes Oliver Burke’s big-money move to the Bundesliga could boost Scotland’s hopes of reaching the 2018 World Cup finals in Russia.
The 19-year-old winger became football’s most expensive Scot when he moved from Nottingham Forest to RB Leipzig on a five-year deal for a reported fee of £13million.
Burke will be looking to earn his third cap in Sunday’s opening World Cup qualifier in Malta.
Speaking at a William Hill media event at Hampden Park, Motherwell’s player/assistant manager, who earned 48 caps for Scotland, insists Burke can only benefit from his move to Germany, which should have a knock-on effect for Scotland.
“The fact that he has got his move, hopefully he will come into the camp and be full of confidence and can impress enough,” he said.
“He is unknown a bit so it is better going into games when the teams you are playing against don’t really know what you are like or everything about you.
“If he can come in and get some games it would be great.
“When he was in the first couple of squads, nobody knew anything about him.
“I don’t think he has played that much for Nottingham Forest and then he goes for £13m or £15m, whatever it is.
“I think it is great. He is going to a different country and learning a new way of playing the game, to learn a new culture and develop hopefully in a good way for Scotland.
“I know that Mark McGhee [Motherwell manager and Scotland assistant boss] is a massive fan and I don’t think he will be surprised that he has gone for that amount of money.
“Mark never said too much about the campaign, he just spoke about him as a player and he feels he can go all the way to the top. The comparisons have been made with Gareth Bale and according to Mark he won’t be surprised if he goes on the same way he did.
“He has a great physique, he has all the attributes to become a real top player.
“The fact that he has made the move at such a young age tells you all you need to know about him.”