'I'm not that confident' - Miller and Levein identify key flaw in 'electric' Celtic talent

Willie Miller and Craig Levein have both questioned whether Celtic forward Leigh Griffiths has what it takes to lead the line as a lone striker for Scotland.
Leigh Griffiths. (Photo by Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images)Leigh Griffiths. (Photo by Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images)
Leigh Griffiths. (Photo by Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images)

The Parkhead hitman has been involved with Steve Clarke’s squad throughout a historic international break, but has spent most of his time watching from the sidelines.

The national boss has instead opted to go with Lyndon Dykes or Oli McBurnie as an attacking focal point, with Griffiths introduced late on against both Serbia and Slovakia.

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In Sunday’s UEFA Nations League clash against the latter, Clarke chose to bring the 30-year-old into the game with his side trailing, playing him alongside Sheffield United striker McBurnie in a conventional front two.

Griffiths was deployed in a similar role in Belgrade on Thursday evening, and both Miller and Levein are in agreement that he needs support to get the best out of him.

Speaking on BBC Sportsound, Miller said: “He’s a player that excites.

"I can go way back to when the Celtic weren’t happy about Leigh Griffiths coming to Celtic Park, and at the time, my comments were: ‘This guy’s a goalscorer’. He is. He’s a predator, he gets himself into those positions, but I think he needs that support of a big striker beside him.

"I’m not that confident if it was just him on his own.”

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Levein added: “I agree. I just don’t think he’s the type of player who will run the channels for 90 minutes.

"I think he’s sharp, and around about the penalty box, he’s electric. He's very clever and his movement is excellent. Also, he anticipates, and that’s why he’s such a good goalscorer.

"When Scotland are defending deep – and at times defenders need to make clearances – who would you have running into the channels, Lyndon Dykes or or Leigh Griffiths? That’s not Leigh’s game.

"Don’t get me wrong, he will try. But when the ball goes forward and I see Lyndon Dykes up front, as a midfield player I’m 100% making a run thinking I have chance of scoring a goal.

"I’m very happy that Leigh Griffiths is in the squad, but what I think we’ll see is what we saw tonight. If we’re behind in a match then he will come on, we’ll go 4-4-2, and we’ll rely on him.”