Football

Smith questions handling of Novo issue

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Rangers manager Walter Smith believes the Scottish Football Association should have clarified their stance on capping non-nationals long before Nacho Novo revealed his desire to play for Scotland.

The striker, 29, admitted recently he would consider switching allegiance from Spain to Scotland after spending seven years in the country. But SFA chief executive Gordon Smith revealed on Friday that a gentleman's agreement with the other Home Nations meant only those with a bloodline to the country were able to play for Scotland.

"As soon as that ruling was introduced to allow non-nationals the opportunity, the association should have made the decision," Walter Smith told the Daily Record.

He added: "It shouldn't be left to the manager to say I'll cap them and the next one to come in and say I'm only capping Scottish players.

"That ruling should have been made immediately after the legislation was brought in."

The former Scotland manager claims he would have been more than happy to select Novo if still in charge of the national team.

"I would have no qualms about introducing Nacho to the squad if that had been agreed as the way ahead," said the Rangers boss.

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