Rangers player gets international call despite speculation over retirement
Northern Ireland captain and Rangers midfielder Steven Davis has been named in Ian Baraclough's squad for their upcoming friendlies against Luxembourg and Hungary despite speculation over his international future.
It had been uncertain whether the 37-year-old, who has won a record 132 caps, would continue following the end of the side's World Cup qualifying campaign.
Davis, however, has given no indication to Baraclough that he intends to retire from the international game and firmly remains part of the plans ahead of the start of the Nations League campaign in June.
Baraclough said: "It's a question that's going to be asked every conference but my conversations with Steven have been no different.
"He's looking forward to the two games, looking forward to June. He's looking forward to meeting up with the guys and being part of the squad."
The only issue concerning Davis had been fitness-related after a stop-start campaign at Ibrox. The former Fulham midfielder has not played for the club since February 27 in a 2-2 draw with Motherwell and has not been involved in Rangers’ five matchday squads, the most recent being Sunday’s 3-0 Scottish Cup triumph over Dundee.
Baraclough said: "He's had a couple of setbacks, a small calf issue and thigh issue, but I've not been told he won't be fit for us come next week."
Davis has been named in a 25-man squad which also features three other players who ply their trade in the cinch Premiership.
Dundee’s veteran forward Niall McGinn has been called up, while there are also places for Aberdeen winger Matty Kennedy and Motherwell midfielder Liam Donnelly. St Mirren’s Jordan Jones has not been included, while Hearts pair Liam Boyce and Michael Smith continue to be absent.
Baraclough has also introduced two new faces in Fleetwood winger Paddy Lane and Sunderland's Trai Hume.
Leicester defender Jonny Evans is not included due to injury but there are returns for Shayne Lavery, Dion Charles and Daniel Ballard.
Dale Taylor, Jamal Lewis, Conor Washington and Ethan Galbraith are also not involved.
Baraclough's side play in Luxembourg on March 25 before hosting Hungary at Windsor Park four days later.