Belfast Telegraph

Hanley boosted by return to Scotland line-up as he bids to impress McLeish

By Gavin McCafferty

Grant Hanley admits his Scotland recall was a huge boost as he looks to cement a place in Alex McLeish's back line.

The 26-year-old made his first Scotland start since the Wembley defeat to England in November 2016 as Scotland lost 1-0 to Costa Rica in McLeish's first match back in charge on Friday night.

The centre-back started the first four matches of Scotland's failed World Cup qualifying campaign but his only appearance last year was as a second-half substitute for the injured Charlie Mulgrew in a 2-0 home win over Malta.

Hanley, who has made 28 appearances for Norwich since moving to Carrow Road at the end of August following a frustrating year at Newcastle, said: "It was great to be back out there.

"Obviously I missed out on the last squad which I was gutted about. But I can understand that, I wasn't playing, I hadn't played a game for a while.

"So for me it was a huge boost to get back in the squad and to get some minutes under my belt, I was really pleased with it."

Hanley now turns his focus to tomorrow's friendly in Budapest against a Hungary side which lost 3-2 at home to Kazakhstan on Friday.

He said: "The most important thing for us is to stay focused on ourselves, keep working hard and keep taking on board the new ideas from the new manager and staff."

Hungary vs Scotland

International Friendly

Groupama Arena, Tomorrow, 7.00pm

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