Football

Hartley backs Burley over keeper call

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Paul Hartley has backed Scotland manager George Burley to make the right call when selecting which goalkeeper faces Holland in this weekend's World Cup qualifier.

Craig Gordon has retained his status as number one choice since Burley took over last January but his place is in doubt following a lack of first-team action at Sunderland. Allan McGregor has never featured in a competitive match for the national team but his form for Rangers means he could be given the nod instead.

"That's a decision the manager has to make," Hartley said. "You have to look at what Craig has brought to the team over the last couple of seasons."

He added: "I played with him at Hearts and I know what a good goalkeeper he is."

Burley refused to be drawn on his last line of defence against the Dutch when he named his squad for the double-header against Holland and Iceland last week, leaving the Tartan Army playing a guessing game.

"We are in a position where we have two excellent goalkeepers," Hartley added.

"Craig's not playing and everybody is making a big issue of it. Allan has been playing and has been on top of his game.

"It's a tough decision for the manager to make but I'm sure he will make the right one."

Hartley himself is hoping to have a part to play in Burley's plans, with the midfield expected to be a key area for the Scots.

And with Barry Ferguson, Darren Fletcher and Scott Brown all available for selection, the Scotland boss has plenty to ponder in that area of the field.

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Topics:
Sunderland
Football
Premier League
Darren Fletcher
Scott Brown
Scott Brown
Barry Ferguson
Craig Gordon
Paul Hartley

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