Jon McLaughlin hands Sunderland a welcome boost by pulling out of the Scotland squad

Jon McLaughlin hands Sunderland a welcome boost by pulling out of the Scotland squad

Sunderland given selection boost as Jon McLaughlin is replaced in Scotland squad

McLaughlin has established himself as Scotlands third choice goalkeeper after a string of impressive performances for the Black Cats this season.

However, his selection posed a problem for Sunderland who were eager not to face another fixture postponement or be without a talismanic performer for a key league game.

Speaking recently, McLaughlin said it would be important to ensure all parties are comfortable with a decision on his involvement.

“At the end of the day, this [Sunderland] is who pays the wages and this is where your real job is.

“Of course, it is fantastic to be called up for your country, you want to go there and be involved and do what you can.

“If you’re not playing, playing more of a supportive role if you like, and you’re going to be missing key games, then there is a decision to be made there.

“You need to have the conversations and make sure everyone gets the best result. Yourself, your country and the club. We’ll see what happens with that.”

Tom Flanagan has been selected for Northern Irelands fixtures against the Republic of Ireland and Austria, meaning that at this stage, he is not likely to be available for the Wycombe visit.

Kilmarnock goalkeeper Jamie MacDonald has been called up to the Scotland squad following the withdrawal of Sunderlands Jon McLaughlin.

McLaughlin, 31, has been spared international duty as League One Sunderland play Wycombe on the same day Scotland play Albania in Shkoder.

Alex McLeishs side trail Israel in Nations League C, Group 1 going into their final two group fixtures.

Killie manager Steve Clarke said of MacDonald: “Its a good reward for Jamie for the level of consistency since I came into the club, so Im delighted for him.

“Hes a model professional. He works well every day in training, good in the group, good in the dressing room, uses his experience well. So to get called up is a good little boost for Jamie at this stage in his career.

“The main goalkeepers that Scotland have used over the years have always been at a really high level so its always been difficult for other goalkeepers to get a look in.”

Defenders: Michael Devlin (Aberdeen), Scott McKenna (Aberdeen), Charlie Mulgrew (Blackburn Rovers), Stephen ODonnell (Kilmarnock), Andy Robertson (Liverpool), Graeme Shinnie (Aberdeen), Kieran Tierney (Celtic).

Midfielders: Stuart Armstrong (Southampton), Ryan Christie (Celtic), James Forrest (Celtic), Ryan Fraser (Bournemouth), Gary Mackay-Steven (Aberdeen), Kevin McDonald (Fulham), John McGinn (Aston Villa), Callum McGregor (Celtic), Callum Paterson (Cardiff City).

Forwards: Steven Fletcher (Sheffield Wednesday), Oliver McBurnie (Swansea), Matt Phillips (West Brom), Johnny Russell (Sporting Kansas City).

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