Glasgow Warriors head coach Danny Wilson has backed youngster Rufus McLean to make the step-up if he is a shock selection at lunchtime today in Gregor Townsend’s Scotland team to face France in Paris on Friday night.

The 21-year-old winger has played only six professional matches since making his Warriors debut in mid-January but has taken it all in his stride with his impressive performances earning a call-up to Townsend’s training squad ahead of Scotland’s game against Ireland earlier this month. He did not make it into the match-day squad for that match, or for the Italy game six days later, but he has continued to impress when released back to play at club level and with Sean Maitland out the squad this week he has now moved a step closer to a first cap.

Duhan van der Merwe and Darcy Graham are most likely to start, but if McLean does get the nod then Wilson has no doubt that he would be up to the challenge.

“Playing France in France would be a hell of a baptism of fire when you consider that French team and the power that they have, but Rufus is a good young pro who is working hard,” said the coach. “In an ideal world, he gets more chances and games to learn – he’s still a very young man and his first opportunities have only been midway through this year – but he’s in form, so who knows? I would certainly back him to go in and do a good job if called upon. “He’s really quick, as we know, but it’s not all about the gas because he’s got good game sense too. He defends well on the wing and knows when to step in and cut things off. “If he’s good enough he’s old enough, and it’s great that he’s getting that exposure with Scotland. He’s a potential superstar for the future, but he still has a lot of lessons to learn along the way.”

McLean’s involvement with Scotland this week means he is unlikely to feature for Warriors in their final match of the PRO14 season against Benetton on Saturday afternoon at Scotstoun. A bonus-point win in that match should be enough to secure fourth place in Conference A, which might be enough to qualify for next year’s Champions Cup if the tournament organisers decide to make it a 24-team competition next year. However, if they opt to make it a 20-team competition then Warriors will join Edinburgh in the second-tier Challenge Cup during the 2021-22 campaign.