Hearts players could still have a role in Euro play-off

Steve Clarke leaves door open for Steven Naismith and Craig Gordon

Hearts keeper Craig Gordon won't play competitively until October. Picture: Mark Scates / SNS
Hearts keeper Craig Gordon won't play competitively until October. Picture: Mark Scates / SNS

The absence of Hearts duo Steven Naismith and Craig Gordon in the Scotland squad for next month’s Nations League double header has not completely closed the door on the possibility of their being involved in the Euro 2020 play-off semi-final against Israel on 8 October, according to Scotland manager Steve Clarke.

The Championship status of the Tynecastle club means they will not be in competitive action before the pivotal Israel tie, which rolls around two days before they begin their season with the League Cup group stages.

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But Clarke has not ruled out either Gordon or 
Naismith

“Both [Craig Gordon and Steven Naismith] have many caps, two good experienced players,” the national coach said. “They are in the middle of pre-season training. Craig has gone there to play matches, to get his eye in and his work done. The same goes for Steven. They have to prepare for Hearts. If I need to call them in in October I would have no worries at all.”

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