Scottish recall for City keeper
CHRIS WISE Norwich City goalkeeper Paul Gallacher has earned a Scottish recall after more than two years in the international wilderness.
Norwich City goalkeeper Paul Gallacher has earned a Scottish recall after more than two years in the international wilderness.
The 27-year-old custodian, an ever-present for the Canaries this season, has been named in Walter Smith's squad for the Euro 2008 qualifiers against France and the Ukraine.
Gallacher had seven caps for his country when he arrived at Carrow Road from Dundee United during the summer of 2004, but has failed to add to that tally since moving south, with a long spell in City's reserves hardly helping his cause.
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But the fact that he is now playing regular first team football has been recognised by his international manager, with Motherwell's Graeme Smith dropping out of the squad to accommodate him.
Gallacher will be thrilled to be back in the Scotland picture, especially for such high profile fixtures, but is unlikely to get a game, with Hearts' stopper Craig Gordon the current undisputed No. 1 and Cardiff's Neil Alexander also ahead of him in the pecking order.
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Scotland captain Barry Ferguson also returns to the squad. The Rangers midfielder missed the wins over the Faroe Islands and Lithuania earlier this month with a heel injury but returned to action in the win over Falkirk on September 9.
Everton defender Gary Naysmith is ruled out for the qualifiers through a serious medial ligament injury picked up in the draw with Newcastle last weekend. But Hibernian midfielder Scott Brown and Cardiff defender Kevin McNaughton, who won his last Scotland cap three years ago, have both been added to the squad.
Celtic striker Kenny Miller is suspended for the visit of France on October 7 but will be available for the game in Kiev four days later.
t Scotland: N Alexander (Cardiff), Gallacher (Norwich), Gordon (Hearts), G Alexander (Preston), Anderson (Aberdeen), Caldwell (Celtic), Dailly (West Ham), McManus (Celtic), McNaughton (Cardiff), Murty (Reading), Neilson (Hearts), Pressley (Hearts), Weir (Everton), Brown (Hibernian), Ferguson (Rangers), Fletcher (Manchester United), Hartley (Hearts), McCulloch (Wigan), Quashie (West Brom), Severin (Aberdeen), Teale (Wigan), Boyd (Rangers), McFadden (Everton), Miller (Celtic), O'Connor (Lokomotiv Moscow).