Ritchie asks to be left out of Scotland squad for ‘private reasons’

Newcastle striker Matt Ritchie asks to be left out of Scotland squad for ‘private reasons’… but Alex McLeish insists he has not retired

  • Matt Ritchie is not in Scotland’s squad for the November international break   
  • The Newcastle winger has asked to be left out for ‘private reasons’
  • McLeish is happy to accommodate Ritchie’s request despite planning to pick him
  • Scotland face Albania and Israel in crucial UEFA Nations League games

Newcastle winger Matt Ritchie has asked to be left out of the Scotland squad for the foreseeable future.

The 29-year-old has won 16 caps for the country of his father’s birth but has spoken to boss Alex McLeish and requested a break for ‘private reasons’.

‘Matt wanted to be left out for the foreseeable future,’ said McLeish.

Matt Ritchie has asked not to be named in the Scotland squad for the foreseeable future

Matt Ritchie has asked not to be named in the Scotland squad for the foreseeable future

‘It’s private. It’s not something for me to discuss. He had injury issues as well and, again, there is management of his injuries.

‘I wanted Matt to come in, but he has asked to be left out at the moment. 

‘He has not retired or anything. You don’t know everyone’s private life so you have to respect that.

Boss Alex McLeish believes it is right to accommodate Ritchie's request but he isn't retiring 

Boss Alex McLeish believes it is right to accommodate Ritchie’s request but he isn’t retiring 

‘I think if you spoke to the people concerned you would be accommodating as well.’

Ritchie – who has missed just one game for Newcastle this season – will sit out of this month’s Nations League double header against Albania and Israel but could yet return when international football resumes in March.

 

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