Smith fear for Scots' old guard
By Phil Jackson
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Walter Smith insists Scotland must reassess the state of some of their older players.
Walter Smith insists Scotland must reassess the state of some of the older players in their squad in the New Year.
A blend of youth and experience has seen the Scots claim top spot in Group B in their Euro 2008 qualifying campaign so far.
The former Rangers boss guided his team to a prize scalp against World Cup finalists France in October, and is hoping for more of the same when the internationals resume in March.
While Smith remains upbeat about the future of his squad, he has conceded some of the veterans may increasingly find themselves on the fringes, as he looks to youth in the long term.
"Some of our younger players like Andy Webster at Wigan - he's had an up-and-down period with his contractual problems - he's a younger one with a few caps and a bit of experience," Smith explained.
"Gary Caldwell, who is currently injured, is another younger player who can come in, and there is Stephen McManus.
"We have to hope the older players we've got can handle the situation, if they can't then we have to bring in the younger ones.
"Their experience has been vital to us - David Weir, Christian Dailly, Steven Pressley - they are all players who have played exceptionally well and in the couple of years I've been there have put in exceptional performances.
"We've taken good steps, but the group has already started, we're only a third of the way through and we face some very difficult matches."
The Tartan Army face Georgia at home in their next vital run out in the competition on March 24.