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ECK BACKS GRIFF

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LEIGH GRIFFITHS will be welcomed back to the Scotland international fold, admitted boss Alex McLeish.

The Celtic striker has taken a break due to “personal issues”.

Griffiths, 28, was included in the international squad for the games against Israel and Portugal in October, but pulled out to work on his fitness.

McLeish had previously left the frontman out of the starting line-up for the opening Nations League match against Albania, but the former Rangers manager insists there is no animosity between the pair.

The Scots gaffer said: “I told him a couple of weeks ago people were trying to drive a wedge between us.

“I said: ‘Look, there are no guarantees and I’d say that to anybody Leigh, but if you are playing at your top level then, of course, there is going to be a great chance you wear a Scotland jersey again’.

“It was an adult conversation. It is sad to see he has some problems at the moment and I hope he makes a full recovery.

“We are a small nation, we don’t have a lot of striking choices and if he’s at his best then he is up there with our best finishers in the country.”

Griffiths started his last game in the 6-0 win over St Johnstone in October and made a brief comeback against Hamilton Accies where he scored with a free-kick in the 3-0 win.

However, he is now on the sidelines for an indefinite period with Brendan Rodgers set to splash the cash in next month’s transfer window to give him attacking options.

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Editor

Acclaimed author Alex Gordon wrote the biography of Scotland international legend Denis Law, entitled 'King and Country'. He is a former columnist with World Soccer magazine and Scottish correspondent of respected European journal L'Equipe.

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