Rangers goalkeeper Jon McLaughlin’s hopes of turning out for Scotland at the European Championships look to be fading due to his lack of playing time at Ibrox.
McLaughlin joined the Gers in June 2020 following a stint at Sunderland and made a superb start to life at the club.
With Allan McGregor struggling with niggles, the 33-year-old played a prominent role during the early stages of the season, turning out in seven Premiership matches in a row across August and September.
Remarkably, it was only in his seventh league outing that he conceded his first goal, in a 2-2 draw at Easter Road. Yet, it was enough to see him lose his place in the side, as McGregor slotted back in as no.1.
Opportunities have been few and far between ever since, with just two further Premiership outings and solitary appearances in both the Europa League and the League Cup.
McGregor recently made his 400th appearance for the club and has been in excellent form, while the importance attached to each fixture ensures there’s been little room for rotation.
It’s now been over a month since McLaughlin’s last appearance, away at Lech Poznan, and it’ll be hard to argue that he deserves a place in the Scotland XI if he has barely featured at club level.
David Marshall is very much Scotland no.1 right now following his heroics in Serbia, while Craig Gordon is performing week in week out for Hearts, albeit in the Championship.
Even Rangers loanee Robby McCrorie, who is currently out of favour at Livingston, has made more league appearances than the Gers no.2 this season.
The experienced McLaughlin is a brilliant back-up option for Steven Gerrard, who is safe in the knowledge that if McGregor picks up an injury during the run-in, his side won’t be significantly weakened.
Yet, after a headline-grabbing start to the season, there’s likely a sense of frustration right now for a player who could still make Steve Clarke’s squad for the Euros but who looks very unlikely to feature at the tournament.
McLaughlin is set to take a spot on the bench again, but many Rangers fans are hoping a different Scotland international returns to the starting lineup against Ross County on Saturday after a long absence.