Connor McLennan has had worse weeks of his fledgling career.
The Aberdeen winger made a game-changing appearance from the substitutes bench in Croatia on Tuesday as he scored a late double to give Scotland’s under-21s victory in their Europa Under-21 Championship Group D qualifier.
The win, which followed a 2-0 victory against San Marino last Thursday, was a rare moment of light for the Tartan Army following the misery of two home defeats for Steve Clarke’s national team against Russia and Belgium.
There is an air of despondency surrounding the national team but McLennan believes the under-21s can offer some hope for the future.
He said: “It is a brilliant start for us. To get six points out of six from two different games was great and the approach for both went to plan.
“I wanted to get as much fitness under my belt as I could after missing the start of pre-season so the two games will do me no harm.
“The under-21 squad is full of talent. There are boys playing at first-team level all over the pitch and you can see it in training.
“We’ve got a really good bunch there and I can see a few pushing on to the national team. First and foremost it is about proving ourselves at our level but definitely I can see a few pushing on.
“A few of the younger boys here have done well with Scotland after coming through the performance schools. I missed it by a year.
“You don’t want to look too far ahead. We’re all around 18 and 19 but most of us are playing first team football.”
McLennan’s cameo for Scott Gemmill’s side in midweek impressed his club manager Derek McInnes but the Dons winger knows he faces competition for a starting role with the Dons.
International wingers Niall McGinn and Ryan Hedges are the men he must replace but both impressed in the 3-0 win against Ross County before the international break.
McLennan, however, is confident he can compete.
He said: “The game against Ross County you could see what they can do. I missed a pre-season with a wee injury.
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“I had a tidy up in my knee and then it was about trying to get as much fitness as I could when I was away. “These under-21 games helped and hopefully I can kick on from here.
“The plan is to become a first-team regular again and that is what I am looking to do now.”
Aberdeen showed signs of finding their form against Ross County before the international break but the inconsistent start made by several teams has not gone unnoticed.
Former Don Stevie May makes a quick return to the Granite City following his move to today’s visitors St Johnstone two weeks ago.
May had a disappointing two seasons at Pittodrie but McLennan hopes to see his former team-mate get his career back on track with Wright’s side.
He said: “It will be good to see him because he was a great guy in our dressing room. You can see his quality and I hope it works out for him.
“I don’t know why he wasn’t scoring here every week but hopefully he can start doing that at St Johnstone.
“He was great to play with, works his socks off, is so unselfish and does the work of two players. He helped me with that goal at Ibrox and I hope it works out for him.”