Sunderland given selection boost as Jon McLaughlin is replaced in Scotland squad

Jon McLaughlin has been replaced in the Scotland squad
Jon McLaughlin has been replaced in the Scotland squad
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Jon McLaughlin has been replaced in the Scotland squad by Kilmarnock goalkeeper Jamie MacDonald.

It means that the 31-year-old looks set to be available when Wycombe Wanderers visit the Stadium of Light next Saturday.

McLaughlin has established himself as Scotland's third choice goalkeeper after a string of impressive performances for the Black Cats this season.

However, his selection posed a problem for Sunderland who were eager not to face another fixture postponement or be without a talismanic performer for a key league game.

Speaking recently, McLaughlin said it would be important to ensure all parties are comfortable with a decision on his involvement.

"It’s difficult to balance it," he said.

"That is the problem of this division, you don’t get the international breaks off.

“At the end of the day, this [Sunderland] is who pays the wages and this is where your real job is.

“Of course, it is fantastic to be called up for your country, you want to go there and be involved and do what you can.

“If you’re not playing, playing more of a supportive role if you like, and you’re going to be missing key games, then there is a decision to be made there.

"I’ll respect the decision of the Scottish FA and the club.

"You need to have the conversations and make sure everyone gets the best result. Yourself, your country and the club. We’ll see what happens with that.”

Tom Flanagan has been selected for Northern Ireland's fixtures against the Republic of Ireland and Austria, meaning that at this stage, he is not likely to be available for the Wycombe visit.

One player who has unexpectedly not been called up is Bryan Oviedo, who was not named in the Costa Rica squad for their upcoming clash with Peru.

Oviedo has lost his place in the Sunderland starting XI after picking up a red card against Peterborough United last month.

In his place Reece James has been an impressive figure in a defence, including McLaughlin and Flanagan, that has picked up four league clean sheets in a row.

Reports in Costa Rica have suggested that it is due to an injury.

Jack Ross last Saturday confirmed that the 28-year-old had missed the 2-0 win over Plymouth Argyle with a calf problem.