LEIGH GRIFFITHS had to wait until the 62nd minute to make an appearance for the Scotland international team in the 1-1 draw with Canada at Easter Road tonight.

The Celtic striker came on in an effort to pep up Gordon Strachan’s side as they limped to a drab stalemate in their warm-up for the crucial World Cup qualifier against Slovenia at Hampden on Sunday.

There is every chance Griffiths, who was an unused substitute at Dundee on Sunday, might be on from the start at the national stadium with the Scottish side toiling for pace up front.

The Hoops hitman, in fact, came so close to setting up the winner in the fading moments when he flashed over a left-wing cross for fellow-sub Jordan Rhodes smack in front of goal.

Amazingly, the Sheffield Wednesday attacker miscued from two yards and the chance was lost.

Strachan was as good as his word with the other five of the Celtic contingent – Craig Gordon, Kieran Tierney, Scott Brown, Stuart Armstrong and James Forrest – in the stand watching the encounter along with around 9,000 Tartan Army fans.

It was never going to be a spectacular, but the Scots were jolted out of their early lethargy when Falkirk’s Fraser Aird fired the Canadians ahead.

In the 11th minute, left-back Lee Wallace made a mess of dealing with a left-wing cross as he knocked the ball against a startled Charlie Mulgrew.

It fell perfectly for Aird who steered an unstoppable effort wide of the helpless Allan McGregor.

Scotland levelled, though, through Steven Naismith shortly after Robert Snodgrass had hit the upright.

In the 35th minute, Fulham debutant Tom Cairney had his shot deflected by the Norwich City forward past keeper Simon Thomas.

Chris Martin looked slow and heavy in attack and the Scots fans might have expected the introduction of Griffiths at the interval.

However, he had to wait until after the hour mark before coming on for his 11th cap for his country.

Now all eyes are on Hampden at the weekend as Strachan’s men once again walk the World Cup tightrope.

Anything less than three points will see Scotland kiss goodbye to playing in Russia next summer.


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