David Goodwillie & Ian Black called up to Scotland squad

Black shares a joke with Darren Fletcher during Scotland training
Black shares a joke with Darren Fletcher during Scotland training

Scotland v Australia

Easter Road Stadium
Wednesday, 15 August
20:00 BST
Live commentary on BBC Radio Scotland & BBC Sport website. TV highlights on BBC One Scotland 22:45

Blackburn Rovers striker David Goodwillie has been called up to the Scotland squad for Wednesday's friendly with Australia at Easter Road.

Ian Black and Ross McCormack had been drafted in after James Forrest, Jamie Mackie and Phil Bardsley withdrew.

Graham Dorrans has been excused after his daughter contracted meningitis.

And assistant Peter Houston has defended coach Craig Levein's decision to call up Black, who is now playing in Scottish Division Three with Rangers.

When announcing his initial squad last week, Levein was quizzed on the exclusion of Black's Ibrox team-mate Lee Wallace, who has played for Scotland on six occasions.

"It is very difficult for anyone playing in the Third Division in Scotland to be up to the speed of an international match," was his reply.

However, Houston feels Levein's comments have been "misconstrued".

Goodwillie looks pleased to be part of the Scotland set-up during training
Goodwillie looks pleased to be part of the Scotland set-up during training

"He said the door was always open for Lee Wallace to get in the squad," said Houston. "Lee Wallace is very much part of Craig Levein's plans, trust me, I know that personally.

"And Ian Black is a player for a position that we're a wee bit short of for this particular game. Ian Black had a tremendous season last year and he's a quality football player. He has merited the call-up.

"After the withdrawals, we spoke about what was available and the best player available to come into the Scotland squad was Ian Black. He almost got picked once or twice last season.

"The door is open to any player, whatever division they are in. And if they are playing well, it means Craig has got a decision to make."

Forrest (groin), Mackie (calf) and Bardsley (ankle) join Scott Brown, Craig Makail-Smith and Steven Whittaker on the list of absentees through injury, while Kenny Miller has been left out to allow him time to settle with new club Vancouver Whitecaps.

Levein is now pondering his options up front, having said that QPR's Mackie would lead the line in Miller's place.

Forward McCormack, 25, has scored one goal in seven Scotland appearances, the last of which came in the Nations Cup against Republic of Ireland in May 2011.

The game is Levein's last opportunity to get a look at his squad before the 2014 World Cup qualifiers begin in September.

Scotland start their campaign with a double-header at Hampden Park against Serbia and Macedonia before trips to Wales and Belgium the following month.

Scotland squad

Goalkeepers: McGregor (Besiktas), Gilks (Blackpool), Marshall (Cardiff City)

Defenders: Berra (Wolves), Caldwell (Wigan Athletic), Fox (Southampton), Hanley (Blackburn Rovers), Hutton (Aston Villa), Martin (Norwich City), Mulgrew (Celtic), Webster (Hearts)

Midfielders: Adam (Liverpool), Bannan (Aston Villa), Black (Rangers), Cowie (Cardiff City), Morrison (West Brom), Phillips (Blackpool), Snodgrass (Norwich City)

Forwards: Goodwilie (Blackburn Rovers), Maloney (Wigan Athletic), Naismith (Everton), McCormack (Leeds United), Rhodes (Huddersfield Town).

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