Date: 7th September 2018 at 8:15am
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This weekend’s International schedule has halted any league fixtures involving Sheffield United. The Blades have seen a number of call-ups for players to their National Team but we cannot help but question why John Fleck hasn’t been called up to the Scotland side.

Our Northern neighbours have scheduled two fixtures against Belgium and Albania. Alex McLeish’s side host Word Cup 2018 Third Place side Belgium tonight in a Friendly before hosting Albania on Monday, 10th September in the UEFA Nations League.

A notable exclusion from the called up squad is Sheffield United’s John Fleck who must be wondering what he has to do to be called up. Since signing on a free transfer in July 2016, the Scot helped the Blades win promotion back to the Championship and last season was a strong physical presence as they finished mid table.

He has arguably been one of the better midfielders in the Championship and with the vast majority of the pool of players available for Scotland playing outside the top leagues in Scotland and England; we cannot understand why our midfielder hasn’t been selected.

To date the 27 year-old hasn’t played for the Scotland National Team but has played 17 times at Youth level for the Tartan Army. In September 2006 he capped the Under-16’s side which beat Jersey 11-0, with the midfielder netting an hat-trick.

McLeish has included Aston Villa midfielder John McGinn, who was skilfully uphanded in the middle of the park last Saturday as Mark Duffy charged onto score the Blades second goal in their 4-1 win. Former Blades Kevin McDonald (Fulham) and Matt Phillips (WBA) have also been included.

The full call-up selection was posted on their National Teams twitter account;

In an online article in October 2017, Scottish newspaper the Daily Record reported that Fleck would make an ideal replacement for Celtic’s Scott Brown. And only last week the Sheffield Star posed the same question!

In the past he has been kept out of the National squad by Sheffield Wednesday’s Barry Bannan, but he too hasn’t been selected this time around.

Considering he plays in England and has almost chalked up a century of appearances for Sheffield United we cannot understand why he hasn’t been selected. Having said that Fleck is a prominent figure in the side, and is noticeable when he is absent. United have three tough fixtures ahead of them with an away tie at Bristol City next Saturday. Chris Wilder will be keen to keep a fully fit and fresh squad at Ashton Gate and in the forthcoming fixtures to follow. With Fleck not playing for his Country it would reduce the risk of him being injured and being absent for these games!

 

4 Replies to “Midfielder Absence Is Blades Gain”

  • As a BLADES fan im absolutely disgusted by the treatment dished out by Alex McCliesh not calling John Fleck up for international duty. He’s proved with his excellent performances with the BLADES going back to getting promoted from league one, and further more how he’s adapted to playing his football in the Championship. It’s all wrong, bang out of order on the selection process for international football for Scotland. It’s fair to say that Barry Bannan is good but i do think that John Fleck is better than him many might say that, im only saying that because im a blades fan but theirs got to be some Sheffield Wednesday fan’s out their asking themselves the same question and saying that John Fleck is as good or better than Barry Bannan. I just can’t get my head around it all, going with McGinn is totally wrong aswell last Saturday’s match against Villa proved that John Fleck played their (villa’s) midfield out on sheer class. And to not select John Fleck is unbelievable. In a way leaving him out of the Scotland squad means he’s fit to play for the BLADES in the important matches coming up without getting any injuries but if you ask John Fleck personally i think that he’d say playing for my country is a dream come true and i bet he’s gutted at not being selected. Scotland needs a quality manager who’s willing to look and watch all the scottish player’s playing their football in the Premier League and the Championship, everyone of them, and give them a fair all-round chance of playing for their country. Alex McLeish is an idle bastard who will not go to or send scouts to matches and look at all the possibilitys of every player to be selected. The way McCliesh is going about thing’s and not selecting certain excellent and exciting player’s to play for their home-town country is all wrong. I say this to the Scottish Football Association to sack Alex McLeish for not doing his job in a right and fair way by not selecting certain excellent professional scottish football player’s. To not select certain Scottish player’s for international duty could make the country miss out on qualifying for the the world cup for instance just gone, who’s to say that one certain player could get a golden goal in a match to see them qualify for tournaments and not miss out by not selecting player’s who’s got the ability to do exactly that. Football is a crazy a game at times but if you select a top player it can get the country some well deserved football opportunities to progress in certain tournament s and not miss out by not selecting certain excellent professional player’s that can win you matches when it really counts. Alex McCliesh out not worthy for the job as Scotland’s manager end of.

  • Andrew you need to calm down mate.We all know that Fleck is probably the best or nearly the best mid fielder in the Championship.He is pure class and I am sure Fleck him self would love to be called up for Scotland but Scotland’s loss is the Blades gain.There is every chance he could come back from international duty injured and laid up for 3 months or how ever long.How we would miss him if ever that happened.No wonder national Scottish football is so poor if they keep selecting the same old players they will get the same old results which adds up to failure.It is simple really if you make the same mistakes over and over again you will get the same result time after time again and in Scotland’s case that means failure.Having played one of Scotland’s main mid fielder off the park last home match you would think it would be a simple choice regarding selection for Scotland but no doubt there would have been no one there from the Scottish hierarchy so the same old players get the same old nod and Scotland will get the same old result.

    • As a BLADES fan im absolutely disgusted by the treatment dished out by Alex McCliesh not calling John Fleck up for international duty. He’s proved with his excellent performances with the BLADES going back to getting promoted from league one, and further more how he’s adapted to playing his football in the Championship. It’s all wrong, bang out of order on the selection process for international football for Scotland. It’s fair to say that Barry Bannan is good but i do think that John Fleck is better than him many might say that, im only saying that because im a blades fan but theirs got to be some Sheffield Wednesday fan’s out their asking themselves the same question and saying that John Fleck is as good or better than Barry Bannan. I just can’t get my head around it all, going with McGinn is totally wrong aswell last Saturday’s match against Villa proved that John Fleck played their (villa’s) midfield out on sheer class. And to not select John Fleck is unbelievable. In a way leaving him out of the Scotland squad means he’s fit to play for the BLADES in the important matches coming up without getting any injuries but if you ask John Fleck personally i think that he’d say playing for my country is a dream come true and i bet he’s gutted at not being selected. Scotland needs a quality manager who’s willing to look and watch all the scottish player’s playing their football in the Premier League and the Championship, everyone of them, and give them a fair all-round chance of playing for their country. Alex McLeish is an idle bastard who will not go to or send scouts to matches and look at all the possibilitys of every player to be selected. The way McCliesh is going about thing’s and not selecting certain excellent and exciting player’s to play for their home-town country is all wrong. I say this to the Scottish Football Association to sack Alex McLeish for not doing his job in a right and fair way by not selecting certain excellent professional scottish football player’s. To not select certain Scottish player’s for international duty could make the country miss out on qualifying for the the world cup for instance just gone, who’s to say that one certain player could get a golden goal in a match to see them qualify for tournaments and not miss out by not selecting player’s who’s got the ability to do exactly that. Football is a crazy a game at times but if you select a top player it can get the country some well deserved football opportunities to progress in certain tournament s and not miss out by not selecting certain excellent professional player’s that can win you matches when it really counts. Alex McCliesh out not worthy for the job as Scotland’s manager end of.

    • ian your right mate it would be bad for Flecky and the club in general if he did get selected and come back to us injured. I’m just thinking out loud pal, watching that debacle against Belgium last night and the end result says it all, im glad Flecky didn’t play to be honest as anything could have happened like chasing the ball down like he does so well could have ended in tears for him, going in for a tackle could have been 3 month out like you said or longer depending on the injury so it is our gain keeping him fit and ready for sheffield United. But surely at some point in his career he deserves a good fair crack to play for his country that’s got to come soon rather than later, he’s only played at youth level for Scotland. It’s crazy though what has he got to do to even get watched playing, someone could have been a the Lane last Saturday against Villa to watch him play the way he outclassed Villas midfield with a fellow Scot in McGinn and play alot better than him and McGinn get the call-up it’s just a bad call by the player selecting process for Scotland. I bet other Scotland manager’s in the past would certainly pick Flecky looking at how good he’s been playing leading up to us winning the league one title. And like i said yesterday adapting so well in the Championship and i do believe we’ve got the best midfield in the league when Couttsy gets back in the first team, with Norwood Flecky Duffy and Couttsy it’s got to be the seen as the best on quality even Woodburn i forgot about him so looking at other team’s midfield ours stands way out in front. Your right in saying the call-up will come for Flecky but im with you ian leauge football is more important and getting promoted comes first my friend.

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