Stark ready to 'experiment'

  • Last Updated: November 12 2012, 15:43 GMT

Scotland caretaker-manager Billy Stark has added an element of "experimentation" to his squad for the friendly in Luxembourg after being hit by nine withdrawals.

Billy Stark: Nine withdrawals

Stark has handed debut calls to Kilmarnock midfielder Liam Kelly, Hibernian striker Leigh Griffiths and Inverness midfielder Andrew Shinnie ahead of Wednesday's contest.

Huddersfield left-back Paul Dixon, who played in the opening World Cup qualifiers against Serbia and Macedonia, and St Mirren goalkeeper Craig Samson return to the squad.

The Scottish Football Association revealed that Cardiff goalkeeper David Marshall (groin), Sunderland pair Phil Bardsley (hamstring) and Steven Fletcher (ankle), Wigan midfielder Shaun Maloney (abdominal), midfielders Charlie Adam and James Morrison (both groin), Blackpool winger Matt Philips (toe), Aston Villa midfielder Barry Bannan (knee) and QPR forward Jamie Mackie (ankle) had all pulled out.

Stark said: "Obviously at this stage of the season, with players playing weekend and midweek, niggles and strains and withdrawals are to be expected.

"This match gives us an opportunity to look at players who maybe have not had experience of the international set-up but who have been in tremendous form at their clubs."

Griffiths netted his 12th goal of the season as Hibs beat Dundee United 2-1 to go top of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League on Sunday, while Shinnie has six SPL goals and five assists.

Stark said: "Leigh has been excellent for Hibernian and scored again (on sunday). I know him from the Under-21s and he is a talented player.

"Liam has been terrific for Kilmarnock and it is fitting that he gets an opportunity, while Andrew has been a real inspiration behind Inverness' success so far this season.

"I wanted to keep the Under-21 squad as settled as possible because they have a tough game against Portugal and I know what the more experienced players who have not made the squad are capable of at this level, so there is an element of experimentation to the additions."

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