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Macca targets Scotland return
Craig Mackail-Smith wants to win back his Scotland place by staying on the goal trail with Albion.
The Seagulls’ top scorer is sorry Craig Levein lost his job but eager to impress his Scotland successor.
Mackail-Smith has represented his adopted country six times but has not featured for them since a 5-1 friendly defeat in the USA last May.
Injury sidelined the Watford-born marksman from Levein’s plans at the beginning of the season and he missed out on a recall before Levein paid the price for Scotland’s poor start to their World Cup qualifying campaign.
Mackail-Smith, below, who qualifies through a grandparent, said: “I really appreciate him giving me the opportunity to play for Scotland. He was a fantastic manager while I was there. It’s a very difficult job. You are based solely on results and don’t have much time.
“The qualifying campaigns don’t last long and you want to be in those tournaments. That is just the way it panned out, he didn’t get the results he needed.
“Now a new man is going to come in and I have to do the best I can for Brighton, score goals and make sure I put myself in contention for the squad.
“I loved every minute of the games I have been involved in and I want to get involved in more, play more qualifying games and hopefully get to a major tour nament with Scotland.”
Mackail-Smith, 28, has bagged 11 goals for Albion this season, which already equals his tally for club and country last season.
He scored the only goal against this Saturday’s visitors Derby County at Pride Park last season and lifted his career tally in the Football League to 100 in the Seagulls’ latest Championship outing at Ipswich.