Still Too Wet Behind The Ears

Last updated : 16 August 2010 By Ed_Scottishfitba

Arvydas NovikovasIf Hearts' Arvydas Novikovas wants to progress at international level to the A squad, he must start establishing himself as a first-team regular with Hearts this season. So says Lithuanian national coach Raimondas Zutautas whose side will be hosting Scotland in the EURO2010 qualifiers in Kaunas next month.  Zutautas is weighing up the form of players at his disposal and is likely to call up Marius Zaliukas despite the Hearts defender's non-appearance for June's Baltic Cup competition. However, Novikovas looks likely to miss out on a call despite earning his first full international cap in May against Ukraine. He will make the Under 21s but could earn promotion if he plays regularly in Scotland.

Zutautas said: "We have enough players with more experience who are playing in the Russian league in his position. It's too early for Novikovas to be in the first XI. If he continues to play he can be in the team in one year or two years because he is one of the best young players. It will help him if he is going to play at Hearts, but not sit on the bench. If he doesn't play it is better for him to find another club where he can play."

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