JORDAN RHODES believes his Scotland Under 21 involvement can only benefit himself and Town.
While his teammates prepare for Saturday’s home League I clash with Stevenage, the striker is in Luxembourg ahead of his adopted country’s latest European Championship qualifier tonight.
The 21-year-old, who qualifies for Scotland through the five-year schooling rule, is desperate to add to his three caps so far as Billy Stark’s side, who also have a home clash against Austria on Monday, aim to build on their opening goalless home draw with Bulgaria in Group 10.
Rhodes, whose double in the 4-0 win at Brentford took his season’s haul to six and club tally to 51, doesn’t like missing club matches.
But he explained: “Being involved at this level provides great experience and the chance to mix with some top young players.
“Danny Wilson, of Liverpool, has been called up for these games, and it’s been good to meet him and the rest of the lads.
“We train under the supervision of Billy and (former Aberdeen and Manchester United goalkeeper) Jim Leighton, so we’re not missing out on any work, and it’s great to pit yourself against players from the continent.
“You never stop learning in any job, and being with the Under 21s can only help improve me as a player, which in turn helps the club.”
The likes of Aston Villa midfielder Barry Bannan and Blackburn striker David Goodwillie have moved up to full international level in recent times, but Rhodes, signed from Ipswich in 2009, is happy to focus on the job at hand.
“You never look further than the next match, and for me, that’s Luxembourg,” he added.
“If I’m lucky enough to be selected, I just want to work as hard as I can to help the team to victory.”
Rhodes and defender Jamie McCombe, who completes a three-match ban, are definitely ruled out against Stevenage.
Lee Clark is running checks on Oscar Gobern (dead leg) and Liam Cooper (back), who were both injured in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy derby against Bradford, which Town lost on penalties.