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Scotland should recall Barry Ferguson - James McFadden

Barry Ferguson and James McFadden celebrate with Birmingham
Ferguson and McFadden have teamed up well at St Andrews

Forward James McFadden has urged the new Scotland manager to recall his Birmingham City team-mate, Barry Ferguson, to the international fold.

Ferguson has not been considered by his country since a late-night drinking session while George Burley was boss.

The midfielder has been in good form since joining Birmingham from Rangers.

"Hopefully the new manager, whoever it is, wants to pick him again and I'm sure, if he is asked, he'll go back and play for his country," said McFadden.

Scotland are seeking a new manager after Burley was sacked in November after a 3-0 friendly defeat by Wales that followed the failure to qualify for the World Cup finals.

And the Scottish Football Association has said Burley's successor can recall Ferguson if he desires.

McFadden believes that would be a wise move.

Barry has got a new lease of life and I think he's started to enjoy his football again

Birmingham and Scotland forward James McFadden

"Should he be picked by Scotland? He has great quality and obviously you're going to miss players like him," he said.

Ferguson has been capped 45 times for Scotland and had been captain until the infamous incident in April.

He and Rangers goalkeeper Allan McGregor were told they would not be chosen again by Burley after they made V-signs while sitting in the stand at Hampden during the World Cup qualifier against Iceland.

They had been dropped from the team after days earlier being involved in a drinking session at the team hotel following a defeat by the Netherlands.

Rangers stripped him of the captaincy, fined him two weeks wages and the former Blackburn Rovers midfielder left for a second spell in the Premier League in England.

The Birmingham forward believes Ferguson has recaptured his best form since making his £1m summer move to St Andrews.

"Barry has got a new lease of life and I think he's started to enjoy his football again since coming to Birmingham," added McFadden.

MY SPORT: DEBATE

"There was immense pressure on him at Rangers to perform every week. If they lost, it was his fault and, if they won, it was his good play.

"Since he's come down here, he's managed to relax and enjoy his football again and he's been different class for us - but then his quality has never been in doubt."

Birmingham manager Alex McLeish last week cautioned Ferguson against a return to international football.

While the former Scotland manager said he would not stand in the player's way should he wish to play again for his country, he said that Ferguson was aware of the difficulty of coping with the intensity of England's top flight and an international career at the age of 31.



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see also
McLeish not ruling out Scots raid
09 Dec 09 |  Birmingham
Scots end Gers pair's cap career
03 Apr 09 |  Internationals


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