Dundee’s Craig Wighton admits he was absolutely delighted to be selected for the Toulon Tournament with the Scotland Under-21s even if it meant he had to sacrifice a holiday with his mates.
The Dark Blues front man confessed it was a big surprise to receive the call-up to Scott Gemmill’s squad who are in Group B along with Togo, France and South Korea.
The 20-year-old had suffered what was feared to be a season-ending cruciate injury last July but he worked tirelessly to recover in time to feature for Dundee in the campaign conclusion, starting the last five matches of the campaign.
Now, Wighton is desperate to play his part for the Under-21s with their opener against Togo taking place on Sunday at the Stade de Lattre in Aubagne.
He said: “I was delighted and surprised to get the call-up, to be honest.
“I got a text just over a month ago from Kirsty at the SFA. She was asking all the lads if we had any holidays.
“I wasn’t sure why I had been sent that as I hadn’t played much.
“Then the day the squad was going to be announced, Tommy Young (club press officer) came into training and told me he had received an email saying I was involved.
“I was absolutely delighted and it was a really positive way to end what has been a frustrating season for me.
“I did have a couple of holidays lined up but I will just have to take one with my girlfriend when the tournament is over.
“I go away from the 14th to the 21st and then we are back in at Dundee soon after that.
“I won’t get much time but I have had enough time off this season anyway.
“I have had to cancel a break with my mates but it is just one of those things. I would rather be over there playing.
“I am really looking forward to it and maybe getting a bit more game time after missing so much.
“Hopefully I will still be fit once I am back in at Dens and I can kick on again.”
Wighton played his part in the Toulon Tournament last year, helping the Under-21s make a piece of history when they became the first Scottish side to beat Brazil.
They also defeated the Czech Republic in the third-place play-off with Wighton netting the second goal in a 3-0 victory.
Now, he is hoping to experience similar success this time round.
He said: “We were there last year and had a really successful time, obviously beating Brazil.
“So it is great to look forward to the tournament again.
“The squad has a lot of young boys in it so it will be great for them to be involved.
“There is a good mix from lads who were there last year and now the younger ones who have been doing really well.
“We are in a group with Togo, South Korea and France so it will be really tough.
“But last year was tough as well. We lost the first game to the Czech Republic so we knew we had to win the next two and we went and did that.
“We will be looking to do the same this time.”