New Scotland boss Gordon Strachan insists that Darren Fletcher is still a key member of the squad.
The 28-year old midfielder will miss the remainder of the season for Manchester United after undergoing surgery on his problematic ulcerative colitis, which has troubled him for almost two years, but Strachan says he will be a vital Scotland player once he recovers.
"On behalf of the Scotland supporters, the national squad and backroom team, I wish Darren the best of luck in his recovery from the surgery that has been confirmed by his club," read a statement released by Strachan.
"I spoke with Darren on Tuesday and know that the decision to have the operation has been taken in the interests of his long-term health and with the full backing of the medical staff at Manchester United.
"Darren's commitment and pride in playing for his country is an example to any professional footballer, as has been demonstrated by his availability for the recent World Cup qualifiers and the international challenge match against Luxembourg.
"I'm sure I speak for all Scotland fans when I say I hope that the operation allows Darren to overcome his condition and resume his role as a major influence for club and country in his own time.
"In the meantime, I have stressed to him that, as captain, he remains an integral part of the international set-up and that he is welcome to join up with the squad at any time during his recovery."