A Wright surprise

SCOTLAND hopeful David Wright today admitted he was surprised at the behaviour of Scottish captain Barry Ferguson and keeper Allan MacGregor.

Derek Davis

SCOTLAND hopeful David Wright today admitted he was surprised at the behaviour of Scottish captain Barry Ferguson and keeper Allan MacGregor.

He also feels the action of national team boss George Burley worked out well for everyone after their 2-1 World Cup qualifying victory over Iceland.

Burley dropped the duo after they were involved in a drinking session late Saturday night that carried on until almost lunch-time on Sunday.


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Wright said: “It was a must win game for him and the pressure is off - until the next time.

“If George thought that was the right thing to do then he did it and it turned out very well for him as they won 2-1. It might have been a different had they not won and people thinking Ferguson being in there might have changed things but it didn't matter in the end.”

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Wright admits he would not be able to handle a heavy drinking session so close to an international but believes each to their own.

He said: “It did surprise me because they are very experienced players. But if they can do that and still perform to their best then good. They know their bodies better than anyone else.

“It is not something I would do because I know I could not perform to my best.”

The Scottish FA are looking to draw up a code of conduct to ensure there is no repeat of this week's actions.

SFA chief executive Gordon Smith backed Burley but put in place plans to avoid further embarrassment in the future.

Smith said: "I have met with George Burley and we have spoken about the events of the past few days.

"I fully support George's decision, which was obviously taken with the best interests of the team and the country in mind.

"He knew how vital it was to win on Wednesday and the action he took was deigned to ensure that we got the three points.

"What is clear, though, is that this type of incident must not be allowed to happen again.

"George, like any other manager, relies on his players to act in a responsible manner while they are representing their country.

"We will be issuing players with a code of conduct and will be tightening up arrangements within the team hotel.

"Where any player does not meet the standards required of a Scotland international, they will be dealt with swiftly and effectively.

"Everyone is right behind George and the team as they aim to take us to the World Cup.

"The incidents leading up to the Iceland game were unfortunate and could have been a distraction ahead of the match.

"Thankfully, it was dealt with quickly and the players were able to concentrate on the task at hand and secure the win.

"We now consider this matter to be closed.'

Wright still hopes to win an international call up for his country after being eligible through his mum who is Scottish, but an injured hamstring ended any outside hope of a call-up this time round.

He said: “George was at the Wolves games and picked his squad after that and then was at the Watford game where I came off, but I don't think it affected it anyway.”

derek.davis@eadt.co.uk

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