Norwich City defender Grant Hanley might have turned out for Scotland against Israel at Hampden Park tonight but for the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Tartan Army were supposed to be undertaking their biggest match for more than 20 years in the form of a Euro 2020 play-off semi-final – but the ongoing global health crisis has seen it and many other events across the world become postponed.

Hanley stood a very good chance of being recalled by Steve Clarke having been in fine form for Norwich in the Premier League.

Hanley has overcome fitness issues this season (Photo by Stephen Pond/Getty Images)

The 28-year-old missed around two months of the season in late 2019 due to a groin problem, but has been a constant in Daniel Farke’s side since returning in December.


Today, Hanley will be taking steps to keep up his fitness at home when it might have been so different, and the Canaries captain has opened up about the possible missed opportunity.

He said (Daily Record): “Obviously, I haven’t been in a squad for while, but you could sense the feelings of positivity growing. It was a chance which I got the feeling we were getting ready to take.

“I was hoping to help and play a part. It can come across as a bit of a cliche, but playing for country is what you grow up wanting to do.

Hanley’s last Scotland cap came in March 2018 against Costa Rica (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

“I’m not saying that I am getting close to finishing when I say this, but as you get older, you do appreciate it more and more and you have to try and take every chance that comes your way.”

It’s a great shame for Hanley, who might well have had a role to play given the injuries suffered by Hearts’ John Souttar and Aberdeen’s Scott McKenna.

No one knows when the play-off semi-final will take place, but it’s certainly the least of anyone’s worries right now. All Hanley can do is follow the guidelines like everyone else and hope he’ll be in a position to earn a recall later down the line.

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