Derek McInnes tips Gary Mackay-Steven for Scotland call-up

Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes has tipped Gary Mackay-Steven to be in the reckoning for the next Scotland squad after the former Celtic winger’s strong start to the season.

Mackay-Steven took his goal tally to four for the campaign with a double in the Betfred Cup rout of St Mirren, and a strong performance saw him leave Buddies left-back Hayden Coulson tied in knots.

Asked about his man’s chances of being in the squad to face Belgium and Albania next month, McInnes replied: “Why not? I think he’s contributing. You want your wide players to score goals, and he’s doing that at the moment. Two goals and an assist today.

“I’m sure Alex [McLeish] is aware of who is doing well, but he could certainly be at home in that environment.

“He’s a very good finisher. It’s something we identified when he came in, he’s a calm finisher when he gets into good positions.

“We all know that when he’s enjoying his football and doing flicks and tricks his confidence is sky high and when it is he’s difficult to deal with.”

While Mackay-Steven impressed, Coulson will be having nightmares but his manager, Alan Stubbs, believes the defender will learn from the experience.

He said: “Hayden had a tough time. He’ll learn from it. Sometimes you have to experience afternoons like that to become a better a player. It sounds a bit out there, but I’ve been there. It’s not all roses.

“He’s come up against a good player. He let him build up momentum, and that’s not something you can do against Gary.”

Stubbs is looking for a reaction from his side in next week’s league match against Livingston, adding: “It can take a little bit to get a foothold in the league.

“We started off well in taking three points from our first game, but it’s been a tough week in terms of the opposition we’ve faced at Ibrox and Pittodrie.

“We’ve got a game now against Livingston where they need to lift themselves, and we’ll do our bit to lift them.”

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