(Reuters) – Scotland have not called up left back Kieran Tierney for their upcoming Euro 2020 qualifiers after his Premier League club Arsenal requested that the national team leave him out, manager Steve Clarke said on Tuesday.
Tierney, the most expensive player to be recruited from the Scottish Premiership when Arsenal signed him in August for £25 million, made his debut for the London club in September after recovering from double hernia surgery.
The 22-year-old has made six appearances in all competitions this season but was withdrawn towards the end of last weekend’s 1-1 league draw with Wolverhampton Wanderers and Scotland boss Clarke said the nature of his issue was a “question for Arsenal” to answer.
“Kieran’s got an ongoing issue that Arsenal are keen to address in the next international break,” Clarke told a news conference ahead of Scotland’s qualifiers against Cyprus on Nov. 16 and Kazakhstan three days later.
“Arsenal asked us not to select him. It’s a little bit frustrating. It’s obviously frustrating for Kieran as well but we’ve got good cover in that position.”
Looking ahead to Wednesday’s Europa League clash against Portuguese side Vitoria, Arsenal said on their website https://www.arsenal.com/news/team-news-latest-ahead-vitoria that they had “no first team squad players unavailable due to injury.”
Liverpool’s Andy Robertson is expected to start at left back for Scotland.
“I have to focus on the players that come,” Clarke added. “My job is to try and build a squad… that’s 100% committed, ready to come here and do their best for the country.”
Belgium and Russia have already qualified from Scotland’s group but Clarke’s side, who sit fourth in Group I, can still qualify for the finals through the playoffs.
(Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Toby Davis)