Celtic star out of the Scotland squad as Hearts and Hibs duo candidates for call-up

Scotland boss Steve Clarke admitted his squad is “two players light” due to injuries suffered in recent days.

Former Rangers full-back Nathan Patterson, who has been starring in the Premier League for Everton, was stretchered off in the first half after an awkward fall.

Clare confirmed the injury does “does not look like a good one” and the player will miss the coming games against Ireland and Ukraine.

While the Scotland boss also revealed Celtic midfielder David Turnbull is to pull out of the squad and miss the next two games due to a ankle knock picked up in training.

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"It's not going to clear up in time for us,” he told Premier Sports. "He's better to go back to his club to get ready for their next game.

"Two players light, I'll probably need to call up at least one, maybe two players."

The good news for Clarke is that he has options in reserve.

If he was looking to bring in depth at right-back following Patterson’s injury the most obvious candidate is Hibs’ Chris Cadden.

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David Turnbull is set to pull out of the Scotland squad due to an ankle knock. (Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group)

Now it is not a priority with Aaron Hickey performing so well after coming on against Ukraine and with Anthony Ralston in reserve. But Cadden has been the Easter Road side's most consistent player going back to last season. Having emerged at Motherwell as an all-action midfielder he moved to wing-back and now looks entirely comfortable playing as a full-back in a four or higher up the park.

No player outside Celtic and Rangers has crossed the ball more and he is fourth in the Premiership for accuracy.

With regards to a replacement for Turnbull. Clarke could look to Lewis Ferguson who made a summer move to Serie A, joining Bologna, or Allan Campbell who was called up for the summer’s games and handed his first cap.

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Yet, Scotland are well stocked with players who can operate in the centre of the pitch. The change to a back four with three supporting attackers behind Che Adams, Hearts creative whizz Barrie McKay could be a shrewd addition.

The 27-year-old, whose sole cap came back in 2016, can play centrally as a No.10 but is more adept at coming in from a wide area to combine and create. He continues to be an influential creative presence for Robbie Neilson’s side.

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