Stuart McCall has thanked the Scotland supporters, players and staff for making his time as national assistant coach one of the proudest of his career.

Gordon Strachan’s assistant yesterday confirmed his return to club management at Bradford City, whose League One status renders Stuart unavailable to continue his international commitments.

He joined the national coaching team alongside Mark McGhee in 2013 whilst manager of Motherwell and the former international midfielder wished Scotland the best of luck when the FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign gets under way in September against Malta.

“Firstly, I would like to thank Gordon, Mark, the playing staff and the backroom team for making my time as assistant national coach so enjoyable,” he said. “While I am as disappointed as any fan that we did not qualify for the Euros I remain convinced that we have enough quality, determination and experience to reach the World Cup finals in Russia in 2018.

“It has been an honour and a privilege to serve my country and I would like to thank the Scottish FA for that opportunity, as well as my previous clubs, Motherwell and Rangers, for enabling me to assist Gordon and Mark.

“I’ve never hidden my desire to return to club management and I am delighted to be back at Bradford, a club that is dear to my heart. The programme of fixtures means I can no longer continue to work with Scotland but I spoke to Gordon when the opportunity arose and, as you would expect, he was terrific, fully understood the situation and wished me the best of luck.

“I will miss working with the players and staff and will join the thousands of fans supporting the team when the qualifiers begin in September.”

Gordon expressed his thanks to Stuart for his efforts. “I am delighted for Stuart and I know he will do an excellent job at Bradford. He was a really valuable member of the team and will be missed: not only was an excellent coach, but he was popular with the squad and backroom staff and had a passion and infectious enthusiasm about playing his part for his country.”