Wednesday, 17 November 2010

More than Faroe enough for Mackie

Mackie in training
Since the footballing authorities had been inconsiderate enough to organise Scotland's friendly against the Faroe Islands at Pittodrie on the same night as Dumbarton's Stirlingshire Cup Final with Falkirk, I had to wait until returning from SHS to watch the international highlights. It was good to see some of the youngsters getting a chance to shine. The project of rebuilding the national team depends upon cultivating fresh talent, so occasions like this may not set the world alight but are not, in my view, to be knocked.

I'm especially delighted that ex-Exeter City striker Jamie Mackie got his first goal for Scotland, a typical poacher's effort on the far post. When I used to watch him playing for the Grecians in their Conference days, I wouldn't have imagined him playing at this level, let alone for Scotland. He seemed a bright talent, for sure, and his work-rate was fantastic. But there's no question that his moves to Plymouth and now Queens Park Rangers have transformed and refined his game - with more to come, hopefully.

After the game last night, Mackie told Sporting Times : "It feels brilliant. I am absolutely delighted and I can't wait for the next squad now. The goal was important for me because fans up here probably don't know about me but they do now and that was my main aim, as was impressing the manager to get in the next squad. I do see myself as a striker but I am not playing there with my club, I play on the right but I will play anywhere Scotland want me to.

"It is massive for me to score and to be called a Scotland international is something I dreamt about as a boy. My family are extremely proud. The boys at my club give me a bit of banter about not being Scottish but just because I don't have a Scottish accent doesn't mean I am not equally as proud as any of the other lads."

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