Undeterred by the disappointment of missing out on Euro 2020, Dundee United striker Lawrence Shankland is targeting more Scotland caps.
Shankland, who has four caps to his name, didn’t make Steve Clarke’s squad for the country’s first major finals in 23 years.
The 25-year-old was pipped to the post by Lyndon Dykes, Che Adams and Kevin Nisbet in the attacking ranks after scoring nine goals for the Tangerines last season.
For all Shanks won’t be involved when the Scots’ campaign gets under way against the Czech Republic at Hampden on Monday, he is hoping to fire himself back into contention ahead of next year’s World Cup.
With Covid pushing the Euros back a year, the former Aberdeen and Ayr hitman appreciates had the tournament actually taken place in 2020 his form for United in the Championship may have sealed his place in the selection.
‘I want to add to those caps and be involved for the World Cup’
Speaking on The Go Radio Football Show, he reflected: “I was in form at the time and very much in that squad. How’s your luck?
“Part of my decision to go to Dundee United was to force my way into the national team.
“It came quicker than I thought it would with us being in the Championship last season.
“To get on (for his debut) at Russia was amazing and then to score at San Marino was brilliant.
“Of course, I’m disappointed to miss out because getting to a major tournament doesn’t come around very often.
“He’s (Clarke) told me to keep on my toes in case anything happens, what with Covid testing and all that.
“I’m sure everybody will be ready to go if called upon.
“I love being a part of the squad and there’s nothing better than getting the chance to play for your country.
“I want to add to those caps and be involved for the World Cup.”
Shanks and Taylor celebrated like Scotland fans in Serbia
Despite not making the final cut, Shankland played his part in helping get Scotland to a first finals since the France 1998 World Cup.
The Terrors talisman was a mainstay in both the Nations League and Euro 2020 qualifying campaigns.
Although he didn’t take to the pitch in last November’s play-off final penalty shoot-out win in Serbia, he was very much involved in the celebrations in Belgrade.
Shankland said: “The team is pretty structured and you see that in the strength of performance in Serbia.
“It was great to be a part of.
“Greg Taylor and I were the two left out of the matchday squad because of Covid but even just to be there on the night was brilliant.
“The feeling when Marsh (David Marshall) saved that penalty was amazing, we were like the only two Scotland supporters in Serbia that night and were celebrating on the pitch.”
‘Quality’ front men at Clarke’s disposal
Shankland showed class as he heaped praise on Dykes, Adams and Nisbet as he previewed Scotland’s Group D clashes against the Czechs, England and Croatia.
Knowing how the boss works, Shanks reckons Clarke will have a plan in mind for how best to use his front men and admits there’s an embarrassment of riches in front of him in the pecking order.
“It depends what he’s looking for,” Shankland commented.
“His attention to detail is so clear for everybody, whether you’re a starter or not.
“That is huge going into a major tournament.
“Looking back to the Serbia game, Lyndon was excellent. His hold-up play helped the team get up the pitch.
“Che Adams is maybe a more natural goalscorer but I’m sure both will want to play.
“Everybody gets excited when a front two is mentioned and with the quality of the two we have it is great.
“Ryan Christie has been relied on in the past and I don’t think he will be far away.”