Matt Ritchie has been forced to pull out of the Scotland squad due to injury.

it was only yesterday (Tuesday) when it was announced the Newcastle winger had been called up.

However, instead of flying off, instead Matt Ritchie will stay behind and receive treatment on a knee injury in Newcastle.

Scotland are playing a part in the World Cup preparations of both Mexico and Peru, so it would have involved plenty of travelling as well.

So long as it is only a precaution and nothing serious, probably for the best if Matt Ritchie misses these meaningless friendlies.

With his relentless running, he puts in at least as much effort as any other Newcastle player, plus no NUFC player has started more Premier League games than Ritchie this season.

Both he and Jamaal Lascelles started 32 PL games each, whilst Matt Ritchie came off the bench in another three.

An indifferent first half of the season for the Scottish international has been followed by a great run-in to the season, where he was a key part of the run of wins that took Newcastle to early safety.

A well earned rest awaits him now.

Newcastle United Official Announcement – Wednesday 16 May 2018:

‘Matt Ritchie has today been withdrawn from the Scotland squad due to a knee injury.

He is now receiving treatment back in Newcastle with the club’s medical staff.’

Newcastle United – Tuesday 15 May 2018:

‘Matt Ritchie has been named in the Scotland squad for their upcoming fixtures against Peru and Mexico.

The Newcastle United winger, 28, has been selected in Alex McLeish’s 24-man squad for the International Challenge matches.

They are set to face Peru at the Estadio Nacional in Lima on Tuesday, 29th May, with kick-off set for 8pm local time (2am BST).

And McLeish’s men follow up that game with a clash with Mexico at the Estadio Azteca in Mexico City. That game is set to kick-off at 7pm local time (1am BST) on Saturday, 1st June.

Ritchie currently has 16 caps and three goals for Scotland, after making his international debut in March 2015.’