Football: Brown set to bring in five new faces

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The Independent Online
Craig Brown is ready to hand out Scotland caps to five players over the next 10 days. David Weir of Hearts, the Wimbledon pair Brian McAllister and Neil Sullivan, Christian Dailly of Derby and David Hopkin of Crystal Palace are all set for international debuts.

They will feature either against Wales at Kilmarnock next Tuesday, 27 May, or in Malta as Brown's side plays two friendlies before their next World Cup qualifier, in Belarus on 8 June.

Brown has been stripped of five regulars through the absence of defenders Colin Hendry, Colin Calderwood and Alan McLaren, Blackburn midfielder Billy McKinlay and Bolton striker John McGinlay.

Brown said: "These two friendlies against Wales and Malta give me a chance to look at some people and the most important thing is to find a defensive set-up for the trip to Belarus.

The squad dispersed from Largs, on the Ayrshire coast, yesterday, after three days of training and will reassemble on Sunday. Next Tuesday's meeting with Wales at Rugby Park, Kilmarnock, is the first between the countries since 1985.

Aime Jacquet, the French coach, still looking for the right World Cup attack, has named Chelsea's Franck Leboeuf and Arsenal's Patrick Vieira in his squad of 22 for next month's Tournoi de France.

Jacquet, whose main preoccupation since a sterile Euro 96 campaign in England last year has been a shortage of goals, has also picked five strikers for the four-team event from 3 to 11 June. They are Patrice Loko, Christophe Dugarry Marc Keller, Florian Maurice and Nicolas Ouedec.

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