ANDY ROBERTSON says that Scotland’s players are committed to the cause despite the latest raft of call-offs from Steve Clarke’s squad.

The Scotland captain has been forced to withdraw from the squad to face Cyprus and Kazakhstan through injury, as have Scott McTominay and Ryan Fraser, while Arsenal’s Kieran Tierney was also unavaialble for selection. Graeme Shinnie and Lewis Morgan have been drafted in.

Despite being unfit to play, Robertson will spend the next few days with his teammates at their Oriam training base in Edinburgh, feeling it was important to send a clear signal about his commitment to the cause.

“I understand our nation’s call-offs are scrutinised a lot more because since the manager has come in there’s been quite a few call-offs in every squad,” Robertson said.

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“But the lads unfortunately have to listen to their bodies and sometimes their clubs.

“It’s not from a lack of trying from the lads but in terms of injuries it’s never easy and when you do have a small injury then sometimes you need to rest it. “These decisions are made but it doesn’t make it any easier - we all want to play for our country and I know that from in the squad, but I can see why the perception is maybe like that from the outside.”

The Scotland captain says he is hurting after being forced out of the games with a long-standing ankle issue, which was exacerbated in Liverpool’s win over Manchester City on Sunday.

“It’s a big disappointment for me,” he said. “I don’t care what game it is, I want to play and my track record in the last five years has shown that.

“I’ve had to be selfish for the first time in my career. It hurts as captain to miss out. But I wanted to come up and see the lads and be around the place until they go.”