JASON SCOTLAND has been ordered to forget about sipping champagne at a World Cup qualification party and instead head to Perth to prepare to face Clyde.
Trinidad and Tobago has gone World Cup crazy after the St Johnstone striker and his fellow Soca Warriors reached the finals for the first time in their history by beating Bahrain on aggregate in a play-off on Wednesday.
A public holiday has been declared on the islands and the country’s prime minister Patrick Manning last night hosted an official reception for the players after they were paraded through the streets of the capital city Port of Spain.
However, Scotland was told by Saints boss Owen Coyle to skip the shindig and make his way back to McDiarmid Park.
“I phoned Jason just after the final whistle and congratulated him,” said Coyle.
“I told him we were all delighted and proud of him and he was as high as a kite.
“It is a good boost for the club that a St Johnstone player will be in Germany next summer.
“But the very fact that we pay his wages means we need him back here ahead of the Clyde match.
“Their prime minister has asked them all to go back to Trinidad to attend a reception and I can understand their euphoria at having reached the World Cup for the first time.
“But we need Jason here and I have told him to come back.”
Saints have already missed the services of Scotland for the match against Dundee last weekend and need all hands on deck as they suffer from injuries and suspension.
Out for the home clash against the Bully Wee tomorrow are Scott Paterson (dislocated knee), John Henry (sprained ankle) and Simon Mensing (banned).
On the plus side, defender Kevin James and goalkeeper Kevin Cuthbert may train today.
However, Coyle was being cautious, saying, “They have a chance but it is no more than that.”
Another T&T player who will not be celebrating is Rangers defender Marvin Andrews, who said, “A lot of the players were going back to Trinidad—the celebrations will be wild back home—but I have the Celtic game to consider.”