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Stark urges May to continue run

Scotland Under-21 coach Billy Stark has urged Stevie May to take his blistering goalscoring form into Thursday's match against Georgia.

Last Updated: 13/11/13 at 17:34 Post Comment    Bet with SkyBet  U21 Internationals. Click here to bet.

Stevie May: Has been backed to continue his form

Stevie May: Has been backed to continue his form

The St Johnstone forward has netted 11 goals for his club so far this term, including three in the last two games.

And Stark hopes he can continue his scoring run in the European Championship qualifier in Paisley.

He said: "Stevie is a young lad who has done exceptionally well.

"He was asked to go on loan to Alloa in the Second Division and he scored 20-odd goals.

"He then went out on loan to Hamilton in the First Division and scored 20-odd goals there.

"Now, the mantle has been thrown down for doing it in the Premier League. He's into double figures and we are only in November.

"He is consistently proving to people that he can handle it.

"His first international goal against Slovakia for us was a big thing as well and we are hoping he can keep going.

"We've got a lot of players who are scoring.

"If you look at the weekend, Andy Robertson, Callum Paterson, Stevie May and Ryan Gauld all scored.

"That gives you a lift. Scoring certainly doesn't do you any harm and it's good for the confidence.

"We've come to expect it from Stevie, that's the sort of spell he's having just now.

"We are hopeful he will continue that all season, particularly on Thursday night."

May's form saw him tipped for a call-up to the senior squad but Stark believes the player, who turned 21 this month, will benefit from staying with the younger side for now.

He said: "People talk about the big squad and that's maybe just somebody who sees him scoring goals and thinks he should be in there.

"There's a bit more to it than that. He's learning all the time.

"If he keeps the scoring rate that he's got going at the highest level, then he will be in with a shout I'm sure.

"We've had some boys - Grant Hanley, James Forrest, Jordan Rhodes - going up to the senior squad and you feel really pleased for them that they've made that step up.

"You would want all of them to do that.

"With Stevie I think, generally, he should get enough experience to stand him in good stead when he does go up to the big squad."

Scotland suffered defeat away to Georgia in their last outing but another home win would put them right back in the mix in Group Three.

Stark said: "We go into the game positively.

"In the last group, we built a bit of momentum because we were unbeaten until the last minute of the last game.

"With this group, we have had a defeat in Holland and now we have had a defeat in Georgia.

"But we have won the home games and I'm hopeful we've got that winning habit at home.

"If we can do that on Thursday night, it keeps us well in there for qualifying."

Bet with SkyBet  U21 Internationals. Click here to bet.

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