‘Long may it continue’ - Hanley pleased with City form and proud of Scotland recall
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Grant Hanley is proud to have earned a return to the Scotland squad and is determined to keep working his way back towards top form for Norwich City.
The 28-year-old has 29 international caps but the last of them came in March 2018, with injury issues causing him to pull out of squads since then. He was due to be in Steve Clarke’s squad in March prior to the season being halted for three months due to Covid-19 and then missed three months with a hamstring injury suffered in June, ahead of the Premier League season resuming.
After returning to fitness with the Canaries back in the Championship, Daniel Farke’s captain missed the first three games of the campaign but has played every minute of the current six-game unbeaten run.
“It feels like a long time since I’ve played for my country and that’s something you want to do, you want to play for your club and your country,” said Hanley.
“I’m just happy to get a run of games here at Norwich and I feel like I’m getting back up to speed. To get called up to my national team, I’m proud of that as well.”
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The former Blackburn and Newcastle centre-back, who was runner-up in the Player of the Season voting behind James Maddison in 2018 at the end of his first season with City, has relished the busy recent spell.
“I’m enjoying it, it’s going well,” he continued. “We’re footballers and at the end of the day you want to play games.
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“So long may it continue, I’m just trying to keep my head down and working hard to improve and stay in the team.”
MORE: City skipper focusing on the positives after frustrating draw with MillwallCity team-mate Kenny McLean is also in the Scotland squad, having scored the decisive penalty in a shoot-out victory over Israel at Hampden Park last month, setting up a European Championship play-off final in Serbia on Thursday, November 12 (7.45pm).
That attempt to qualify for a first major tournament since the 1998 World Cup is followed by Nations League games in Slovakia on Sunday, November 15 and Israel on Wednesday, November 18 (7.45pm) - with the Scots top of Group B2 after three wins on the spin.
“Oh yeah, he scored the penalty didn’t he?!” Hanley joked, pretending he’d forgotten McLean’s big moment. “It’s been a long time coming, the chance to get to a major tournament, so I’ll definitely look forward to that.”