ST MIRREN academy graduates Kenny McLean and John McGinn represented Scotland in the 1-0 friendly defeat to the Netherlands at Pittodrie on Thursday.

Both midfielders played the full game, facing the likes of Manchester United star Daley Blind, Roma midfielder Kevin Strootman, Liverpool’s Georginio Wijnaldum and goalscorer Memphis Depay.

Hibs midfielder McGinn, brother of Saints skipper Stephen, earned his fifth cap having featured heavily in squads for former boss Gordon Strachan, although the 23-year-old had often been an unused substitute.

Aberdeen midfielder McLean was making his second Scotland appearance after earning his first cap in a friendly against the Czech Republic in 2016.

The 25-year-old made over 100 appearances for Saints before moving to Pittodrie in 2015. The Buddies were dealt a blow in October when Dons boss Derek McInnes revealed McLean did not want to sign a new deal with the club.

His existing contract runs out at the end of the season meaning he will be able to leave on a free in the summer, St Mirren had been due to pocket 10 per cent of any fee Aberdeen received for the sale of McLean but will now get nothing.

McGinn left St Mirren the same year as McLean after 87 appearances, Saints are due a reported 33% of any fee Hibs might receive for selling McGinn above £100k.

Scotland’s caretaker manager Malky Mackay said: “I’m very proud of the players. To end up with 18 shots at goal against the Netherlands, who are a team that keep the ball so well, and for us to handle that the way we did, I’m so proud of them.

“They are a young group who are growing and growing and I can see it in their eyes that they are the future of Scottish football.”

Meanwhile St Mirren’s Lewis Morgan, Saints loanee Liam Smith and former Buddies Stevie Mallan and Ryan Hardie were in action for the Scotland under-21s as they drew 1-1 with Latvia at McDiarmid Park on Friday night.

The young Scots dominated the Euro qualifier in Perth but needed a 90th minute penalty from former St Mirren loanee Hardie to salvage a draw.

The hosts fell behind moments before the break. Latvia saw a man sent off for a reckless challenge and Scotland continued to press forward, getting their rewards when Ryan Hardie scored from the spot to take a point from proceedings.

Morgan looked lively as did Oliver McBurnie, both had chances to open the scoring.

Morgan is a man in form for club and country and he went close from distance after 34 minutes.

On the stroke of half-time Latvia took the lead when a Jurkovskis header bounced high off the crossbar giving Uldrikis time to position himself in the box to slot beyond the scrambling Ryan Fulton.

Mallan hit the roof of the net with a rasping free-kick from 25-yards in the second half.

Morgan was a constant threat for Scotland and with Latvia camped in their own half, he nearly scored after 76 minutes but the visitors still held strong.

Scotland were awarded a penalty for a foul inside the box and Hardie to smash the ball home to equalise.

Scotland face Ukraine in Perth on Tuesday (after The Gazette goes to press), kick-off 7.30pm.