Craig Gordon assures him there's no need to rush the succession planning.

But despite compelling evidence to the contrary, Steve Clarke knows Scotland's ageless number one can't go on forever.

It's why he's even considering sending John Carver off to faraway lands, armed only with a sign that reads: 'Goalkeeper wanted, must have Scottish granny'.

The Scotland manager has tongue firmly in cheek as he grins at the prospect of his assistant embarking on some goalie globetrotting, but he's deadly serious about finding the heir to 39-year-old Gordon.

The veteran's two current understudies - Liam Kelly and Robby McCrorie - have a combined zero caps between them and although Clarke is adamant they're ready to step up, he's also taking a long-term view.

Wide-ranging overtures are being made to that end, he revealed, and it could be that the answer lies on some fledgling shot-stopper's family tree.

"I would like to find another couple of young ones," Clarke replied when asked if he's worried about the situation. “We’re looking all the time and exploring one or two avenues. Nothing real has come up at the minute.

"We're thinking of sending John to Australia, America and Canada to see if he can go around all the clubs and find somebody with a Scottish grandparent.

"It can be (that someone sticks their hand up). Maybe there's people in England we're not sure about in terms of nationality, that might suddenly find out they've got a Scottish grandparent, which would be lovely. Like I said, John's looking forward to his trips abroad - we just need to find the budget for it!"

Or maybe he just needs somebody to catch a break.

At 24, McCrorie has made only two appearances for Rangers, the last of which was over a year ago and he remains behind another of Clarke's regular picks, Jon McLaughlin, who himself is backup to Allan McGregor.

It was widely suspected McGregor would call time on his Ibrox career at the end of last season but his decision to play on did little for McCrorie's prospects, so perhaps there's an element of reassurance around Clarke's decision to keep involving him in international camps.

Regardless, David Marshall's retirement earlier this year leaves Motherwell's Kelly, 26, as the only keeper out with Gordon racking up regular club minutes.

You get the impression Clarke sees McCrorie as his most promising option but that frustrating lack of top-level experience makes it difficult for fans to regard him as anything other than an unknown quantity.

“Robby has got all the attributes to be a top goalkeeper but he needs game time to work on his decision making on the pitch," Clarke said. "He needs experience. Liam is playing every week for Motherwell and if he has to play, I’ve got no qualms about putting him in the team.

“I’ve also got Jon McLaughlin at Rangers but I want to keep young Robby involved because of his age. We’ll keep looking and working with what we’ve got.

“Big Craig has assured me he’s going to try and play until he’s 50."

Still pulling on the gloves after half a century may prove a tad ambitious even for the evergreen Hearts captain, but it's clear Gordon is desperate not to sign off from the international stage until he's experienced the thrill of a World Cup.

He has told Clarke he wants to stick around until Canada, Mexico and the US in 2026, which would at least buy his manager some time to shape what the future may look like.

Gordon would be 43 by the time the tournament rolls around - a mere two years short of becoming the oldest player to ever appear in a World Cup Finals - that honour belongs to Egypt's Essam Al-Hadary, who kept goal at the tender age of 45 at Russia 2018.

It's a lofty target for Gordon but, having suffered so badly with injuries earlier in his career, Clarke can tell he's desperate to play on and on.

The manager said: “When you look at Craig’s physical appearance, he’s physically fit and looks after himself.

“He had that long spell out in the middle of his career when he didn’t play so he’s determined to play as long as he can.

“After the disappointment of not getting to the World Cup, David Marshall decided that he was going to retire.

“But Craig was immediately on my shoulder saying: ‘Gaffer, I want to go to the next tournament’.

“He doesn’t just want to go to Euro 2024, he wants to go to the World Cup in 2026 if he can.

“That’s good news. Is it feasible? Craig will be 43 but he’s got his eye on it."

Immediate focus, however, is on Wednesday's friendly in Turkey, and it's clear both McCrorie and Kelly will travel in hope this could be their time to pick up that elusive first cap.

But will either of them get the nod?

"I could do that in every game," Clarke replied. "I have shown that it doesn’t matter the level of the game, if someone needs a cap then I will play them.

"Craig is the number one, we know that. I will have a chat with (goalkeeping coach) Stevie Woods and John and we will decide what the best way to go with the goalkeepers is."