David Bates is determined to stay in the Scotland side after helping the team to a Nations League play-off semi-final.
The Kirkcaldy-born 22-year-old was at the heart of the backline as the Scots beat Israel 3-2 at Hampden on Tuesday night to finish top of League C1.
It was the Hamburg central defender’s second cap for his country as he only made his debut for Alex McLeish’s men in Albania on Saturday.
Bates could be up against it to keep his jersey if missing men Charlie Mulgrew, John Souttar, Christophe Berra and Mikey Devlin all declare themselves fit next time around.
However, Bates hopes he has done enough to stay put on merit.
He said: “Hopefully, I can remain part of the manager’s thoughts now.
“I will just go back to Hamburg and keep playing well then see what happens when the next squad is announced.
BLACK FRIDAY OFFER: Two years of unlimited access to The Courier Digital — at better than half price!
“I am enjoying my football so I need to be playing well for my club to stay in the plans for the future.
“The manager has been good to me.
“He spoke to Scott McKenna and I about what he was looking for from the central defenders.
“He was a very good centre-back in his day so he knows the position well and what’s required for it.
“So he has been good to work with and I would like to keep it going.
“We are a young side, a very positive side and I think in the last two games we demonstrated that.
“I think topping the group shows everyone we can do it.
“We have played very well,” added the former Raith Rovers, Brechin and Rangers man.
“We have had to dig in at times and get through it but we managed it.
“The Nations League has been important for us and we are just two games away from the Euros now.
“Everyone knows we can improve further from here and hopefully we will kick on now.”
Bates, understandably, had plenty of praise for Scots goalkeeper Allan McGregor, whose late wonder save from Israel’s Tomer Hemed got the team over the finishing line.
He added: “My heart stopped when they went through in the final minutes but Allan is a very good goalkeeper and he made the save.
“He is good to play in front of because he is always talking and he was a big help to Scott and I throughout the game.
“In fact, he is a brilliant keeper.
“You have seen that for Rangers this season.
“All in all, it was a good night.
“The boys showed loads of character to come back from losing the opening goal and I think we showed the quality that we have.
“The last two games we have played well, we dominated against Albania and against Israel we scored three very good goals.”