Why Hearts star Lawrence Shankland hasn't had big transfer or Scotland chance and what stops him being £30m player

Lawrence Shankland of Hearts hasn't had his big move
-Credit: (Image: DeFodi Images via Getty Images)

John Collins says Lawrence Shankland's lack of mobility is what has stopped him from getting a big transfer and more chances for Scotland.

Despite heading to Euro 2024 off the back of 31 goals for Hearts, the striker was only used from the bench by Steve Clarke, who preferred Che Adams as his lone striker. In fact, the 28-year-old was only used for a total of 23 minutes across the three games as the manager seemed reluctant to even throw him on when in need of a goal.

Clarke has had plenty of his decisions scrutinised and his lack of use of a proven goalscorer has been one of the most prominent. But former international midfielder Collins has defended that and reckons he knows why Shankland has been left kicking his heels on the bench.

The Jambos skipper lacks a yard of pace and the ex-Hibs boss says that's what holds him back and it's also why he's not had a big move, admitting someone who bags that amount of goals would usually go for £30million.

Appearing on BBC Sportsound, he said: "The reason why he hasn’t played is because he’d be a lone striker and he’s not got the legs. His weakness is his legs. He’s successful in Scottish football because he gets the ball in and around the box to score goals.

“That Scotland team never got into the box. If he’s not in the box then he’s not serving the team. He can’t get the ball at the half way line and run away from somebody. He would be good if we were getting in the box and played with two wingers.

“He’s a finisher and he’s proved that. But there’s reason why he hasn’t been bought for lots of money and there’s no bids for him. Somebody scores 30 goals and that’s £30million. I think he’s a good sub (for Scotland).”

Kenny Miller disagreed, replying: "We have a guy who’d scored 33 goals and he only got 22 minutes. There’s a perception that Lawrence is just a goalscorer but for me he’s the best all-round striker we have.

“I’ve watched him a lot and if you get the ball to him, he’ll hold it up better than anyone else we’ve got. He’s just come to a Euros after scoring all those goals. We needed to get up the pitch and have someone capable of getting a hold of the ball and for me Lawrence is our best for that. What else we had didn’t work, so you are analysing it, and I think Lawrence is very, very clever.”