Driver cleared for Scotland
Hearts' Andrew Driver has expressed his delight at being given the all-clear to play for Scotland.
Last Updated: 09/06/10 3:37pm
Hearts winger Andrew Driver has expressed his delight at being given the all-clear to play for Scotland.
The England-born winger was schooled in Scotland, but missed out on playing for the Tartan Army after falling two months short of the eligibility criteria agreed between the four Home Nations.
Following a fresh campaign by Scotland boss Craig Levein to change the eligibility criteria Fifa have now approved an amendment clearing Driver to represent his adopted country.
Although Driver played for England Under-21s at last summer's European Under-21 Championship he always maintained his desire to turn out for Scotland.
The 22-year-old insists he never gave up hope of wearing the famous Scotland jersey and is now looking forward to helping the nation qualify for Euro 2012.
"I am thrilled to finally get the all-clear to play for the country I have pledged allegiance to," he told the club's official website.
"Although I was disappointed when it turned out I didn't qualify through the original criteria, I never gave up hope.
"Craig Levein has kept in constant contact since then and I was encouraged when he told me there was a chance the wording would change and that I might yet play for Scotland.
"I am going on holiday now and this will make the summer all the more enjoyable.
"It has given me extra motivation to get back to my best form at Hearts next season and if I can show the manager that I am back to my best, it would be tremendous to be chosen to play a part in the qualifiers for Euro 2012."
Scotland boss Levein also spoke of his satisfaction at the change, saying: "Obviously I am delighted with the final outcome from Fifa.
"When Andrew's name was first thought to be eligible to represent Scotland, it flagged up an anomaly in the original wording of the ruling. The Scottish FA - and the other Home Nations - all agreed that the wording needed to be looked at and this is why we pursued the change.
"It is great news that as a result of this necessary change, Andrew is now eligible under the new criteria and hopefully if he can get back to the form he showed the season before last, he is a player we can look to introduce to the squad for the Euro 2012 qualifiers."