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Scotland boss Levein refuses McCarthy switch poser

Scotland head coach Craig Levein has refused to be drawn on speculation linking James McCarthy with an international u-turn.

Glasgow-born McCarthy has played for the Republic of Ireland but not yet in a competitive international.

But Levein batted back suggestions that the Wigan player was going to commit his international future to Scotland.

“I don’t want to speak about it,” Levein said after the 3-0 win over Northern Ireland.

This should be about recognising the efforts of the players that played for Scotland tonight (against Northern Ireland).

“Other stuff I can talk about when we are away from a match situation.

“This is for talking about the players who played for Scotland tonight.”

Republic of Ireland coach Giovanni Trapattoni insisted the 20-year-old is still in his plans after the player withdrew from the squad to face Wales on Tuesday.

“All Irish players are in our future,” said the Italian.

“We look at the new young players and McCarthy can play in the future.”

McCarthy’s Wigan team-mate James McArthur says he would like to see his fellow Hamilton youth graduate join him in the Scotland squad.

“I don’t really know anything about it,” said McArthur after scoring in the Scots victory against Northern Ireland.

“All I know is that he picked up an ankle injury after getting a kick on it. I was led to believe that is why he wasn’t in the Republic of Ireland squad.

“But you never know, things happen behind the scenes that you don’t know about.

“I have spoken to him about it many times but I can’t really comment on it, it is James’ decision. You would need so speak to him.

“I would have him playing for Scotland every day of the week but it is up to him.

“He is a top midfielder and the more who come in to the Scotland squad the better.”