Nathan Patterson's international star continues to rise; Che Adams nailing down first choice striker status; John McGinn leads by example - Scotland takeaways

Nathan Patterson must wish every week was international week.

For the 20-year-old, reporting for duty with Scotland continues to offer him his greatest likelihood of game time.

Since his January move from Rangers, where his appearances were limited by the consistency and reliability of Ibrox captain James Tavernier, the buccaneering right-back has found himself an even more peripheral figure in the Everton first team squad.

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So far, 45 minutes in an FA Cup tie against fifth tier Boreham Wood at the start of this month has constituted his only taste of senior action for the English Premier League strugglers.

Nathan Patterson was full of attacking intent for Scotland in their friendly against Poland at Hampden on Thursday night. (Photo by Craig Foy / SNS Group)

Patterson was substituted at half-time by Everton boss Frank Lampard on that occasion - there was precious little chance of Steve Clarke doing the same at Hampden on Thursday night.

As he earned his seventh cap for Scotland, Patterson lit up the friendly against Poland with his dynamic play at wing-back for Clarke’s team.

He almost scored what would have been as impressive an individual goal as the stadium has witnessed in recent times, surging beyond three challenges and weaving his way into the penalty area before his shot was well saved by Lukasz Skorupski.

It was the first of three attempts at goal Patterson had repelled by the Polish ‘keeper in the first half.

Che Adams fires a shot at goal in the first half of Scotland's friendly international against Poland at Hampden. (Photo by Craig Foy / SNS Group)

When his lack of match sharpness did start to catch up with him midway through the second half, Patterson received a merited ovation from the Scotland fans with his manager joining in the applause.

No goal but Adams impresses once more

Che Adams is firmly establishing himself as Clarke’s first choice to lead the line for Scotland.

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Even if the injured Lyndon Dykes had been available, there is every chance Adams would have started on the back of the Southampton striker’s impressive form for both club and country this season.

Having scored in his two previous outings for Scotland, against Moldova and Denmark last November, Adams was frustrated in his pursuit of another.

But he produced another intelligent and often selfless display, causing plenty of problems for experienced Polish skipper and centre-half Kamil Glik.

McGinn plays a captain’s part

In the absence of Andy Robertson, it was a measure of the stature John McGinn now holds in the Scotland set-up that he was handed the captain’s armband.

It is the third time in his 43 appearances for his country that the Aston Villa midfielder has been given the honour.

McGinn brought all of his customary drive and energy to proceedings, setting the tempo in a contest which carried as much intensity as Clarke could have wished from a friendly.

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A slightly heavy touch deprived McGinn of a glorious chance to break the deadlock in the 57th minute when he then resisted the temptation to go down as he had to take the ball too wide of Skorupski.

But he played a key role when the opener did arrive 11 minutes later, his wickedly delivered free-kick allowing Kieran Tierney to head home his first goal for Scotland.

The night ended on a flat note as Scotland were denied a seventh consecutive win by Krzysztof Piatek’s 94th minute penalty after he had gone down cheaply as Craig Gordon advanced towards him in the box. But the positives outweighed the negatives on another progressive night for Clarke’s squad.

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