Heart of Midlothian boss Steven Naismith has offered a firm verdict on the debate over Lawrence Shankland's spot in the Scotland squad.

The striker played in both March friendlies for Steve Clarke's side as the national team lost to the Netherlands and Northern Ireland.

Shankland started in Amsterdam and stepped off the bench at Hampden in Tuesday's defeat to Northern Ireland.

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Despite not managing to get on the scoresheet, Naismith reckons the striker has done enough to warrant inclusion in the squad for the Euros in Germany this summer.

The Tynecastle boss hailed Shankland as Scotland's "most natural" finisher and pointed to his Hearts form for reference over his goalscoring capability.

"He is the guy who always gets chances," said Naismith on BBC Scotland. "I know it first hand from him being in the team for us at Hearts.

"He will take his chances and for me the debate was 'is he worth being in the Euros squad'?

"I think he will be in the Euros squad, I think he is an asset for us. There's a lot of football to be played and the three strikers have different traits. But the most natural finisher is Shanks, for me."

Shankland hit the crossbar against the Netherlands and was unfortunate to see a late effort against Northern Ireland blocked.

But Naismith is confident that the striker was doing everything right even if it didn't result in an equaliser.

He said: "As an instinctive finisher he has done everything in terms of getting it out his body and and getting the shot off.

"It's on target, but it's that compact and that many bodies in the way it hits a defender and is cleared.

"The biggest thing for the squad is that's the last impression you have given Steve Clarke. From now to the summer, they have to perform because competition for places within the squad is massive. That is what the manager will lean on.

"Overall, we are in a much better place than we have been for many years."