Scotland coach Steven Reid reckons Scott McKenna will benefit from spending this week at home with Aberdeen rather than travelling with the national team squad.
Defender McKenna returned to the Dons side for Saturday’s 1-1 draw against Hibernian, having been sidelined since August 24 due to hamstring tear suffered in a match against Kilmarnock.
Although McKenna has regained fitness, Reid feels the travelling demands for Scotland’s double header away to Russia and at home to San Marino this week could have an adverse effect on the 12-times capped player.
Reid hopes McKenna can use the time off to restore himself to peak condition at Pittodrie, and he said: “At the minute, I’m not sure he’s done enough work at club level. I think he’s had one or two training sessions.
“We’ve got the travel, as well, which is a consideration. A longish flight back with a hamstring injury, it might actually benefit him to have a week at home with Aberdeen.
“But we will look forward to the next squad, hope he gets his fitness up again and I’m sure he’ll be up for consideration and involved again.”
McKenna is one of several defenders absent for Scotland’s double header, with Liam Cooper and Grant Hanley withdrawing from Steve Clarke’s original squad.
Motherwell defender Declan Gallagher has been called up as a late replacement, with Reid adding: “Declan’s in on merit, he’s in on form. It’s good to have him involved and I’m looking forward to working with him this week.
“It’s a chance for him and hopefully he grasps it with both hands.”