The other day I wrote about Danny McGrain and his debut for Scotland and so I thought that could be a theme over the next few months or so. So today it’s Kenny Miller Time. Kenny started out as a Hibs player and he was capped at Under 21 level in March, 2000. He would gain seven caps as an Under-21 player, 4 of which would be gained as a Rangers player. He moved to Rangers in June, 2000 for £2m.
Craig Brown gave Kenny his first cap on 25th April, 2001 in Bydgoszcz, Poland where Scotland played out 1-1 draw in front of a crowd of 18,000. Craig was giving them out like confetti that night and Kenny was among seven new caps. Starting that night were Barry Nicholson of Dunfermline who would gain three caps in total, John O’Neill of Hibs who would have an International career totalling of 75 minutes, all in this game, which was twenty minutes longer than Charlie Miller of Dundee United would have as he was substituted in the second half too. Gavin Rae of Dundee would be more fortunate, carving out an International career of 14 caps. As for the subs; Andy McLaren of Kilmarnock would come on at half time replacing Billy Dodds for his 45 minutes of International fame, followed ten minutes later by Miller’s replacement; Steven Caldwell of Newcastle. Steven would win 12 caps in total. Finally with nine minutes remaining Kenny Miller would make his International bow replacing Scotland’s goalscorer Scott Booth. Within a minute, Tomasz Iwan was sent off for a second bookable offence for fouling Miller and that was that.
Had Kenny made a big impression, would he feature in Scotland’s World Cup campaign that year? The answer is no, in fact Brown would not play him again and it wasn’t until Hans Hubert Vogts took charge that he would return almost two years later.
By this time, Kenny would be a Wolves player and started the Euro Qualifier against Iceland at Hampden in March, 2003. If Kenny had felt he had waited a long time for a return to the Scotland team, he did not have to wait long for his first goal, coming just twelve minutes into the game. Scotland won 2-1 with Lee Wilkie hitting the winner in the second half.
Of course, Kenny went on to win 69 caps and scoring 18 goals (and truth be told probably missing a few sitters too) which came when playing for 7 different clubs; Rangers, Wolves, Celtic, Derby, Cardiff City, Vancouver Whitecaps and Bursapor. This must surely be a record; if not then playing in five different countries surely will be, with stints in Scotland, England, Wales, Canada and Turkey.