Adding Aberdeen’s Lewis Ferguson to the Scotland squad can soften the blow of losing Manchester United midfielder Scott McTominay, says head coach Steve Clarke.

The Scots boss – who has signed a new contract until 2024 – has confirmed the Manchester United player will miss World Cup 2022 qualifying matches against Denmark, Moldova and Austria next month due to injury. Ferguson comes in for the first time in his place and Clarke believes Scotland are well-covered.

Manchester United v Everton - Pre-season Friendly

McTominay is out as Manchester United look to fix his injury. (Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images)

McTominay can feature in defence and midfield for Scotland. Clarke explained: “Scott has had an ongoing issue for a little while now. Both the player and Manchester United have decided to get it fixed. It is a big blow to lose someone of Scott’s quality but I have five central defenders in the squad now – and Kieran Tierney too.

“There is cover in the midfield too with Lewis Ferguson. I have always liked Lewis and I have kept an eye on his progress. He has always done very well with Aberdeen. When I was Kilmarnock manager we rarely beat Aberdeen, they always had a little hoodoo over us and Lewis was a big part of that.

“I like what he gives box-to-box, he can do the defensive part and is a strong boy. I actually spoke to Lewis in the summer about keeping fit just in case we got some injuries or Covid issues during the tournament, I asked him to keep fit.

“So he is someone I have been thinking about for a little while and with Scott McTominay missing out it is a chance to put Lewis in.”

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