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PersonalFullname: Scott Brown
aka: Broonie, Broonaldo
Born: 25 June 1985
Birthplace: Dunfermline, Scotland
Signed: 29 May 2007 (£4.4m)
Position: Midfielder (Central/attacking, Right-side)
Debut: Celtic 0 - 0 Kilmarnock, SPL, 5 August 2007
Squad no: 8
International Caps: 43 [Up to 01/06/2015]
International Goals: 4
- In Jan 2009, Scott Brown was highlighted as "One to watch" for the year by FIFA! (link)
BiogCeltic beat rivals Rangers to the capture of highly-rated Hibs midfielder Scott Brown in May 2007.
After the Ibrox club had signed Kevin Thomson, Brown’s midfield partner with the Edinburgh club, in January it was wrongly assumed by the media and the Rangers support that the Scotland international would soon follow his friend south of the Clyde. The arrogant Rangers support were so confident Brown was theirs – after being assured it was a ‘done deal’ by Clyde FM pundit and ex-Ger Derek Johnstone – they even taunted the Easter Road support with a chorus of "Scott Brown, we’re gonna take Scott Brown…".
But on May 16th the Bhoys paid a reported £4.4 million to beat Rangers, Tottenham and Everton for Brown’s signature. Ironically, just three days after the move was agreed Brown scored against the Hoops in a league match at Easter Road. The transfer was a record fee between Scottish clubs and an accurate reflection of the then 21-year-old’s growing reputation.
It would however prove to be a difficult first season at Parkhead for Brown. Tenacious, a strong runner and with undoubted ability Brown certainly certainly showed glimpses of the attributes which made him the most sought after Scottish midfielder in years. But despite some great showings, inconsistency and a lack of discipline would mean the player never really hit the heights expected. Consequently he lost his place in the side during the title run in following a suspension due to his high number of bookings.
That didn’t stop a delighted Brown joining in the Championship celebrations at Tannadice but the player’s joy hid a personal sadness which would put any footballing issues into perspective. Just days after the title party it was announced that Scott’s younger sister had passed away following a battle with skin cancer. It says everything about Brown’s strength of character that he was able to produce the standard of performance he did while having to deal with such sad circumstances off the pitch.
The following campaign (2008/09) saw Celtic relinquish their hold on the title but for Brown the season was not a total disaster as he picked up the SPFA Players' Player of the Year. Showing much more consistent form, Brown's energetic performances were to be one of the few highlights of a dire league campaign for the Bhoys.
In the summer of 2009 Brown would be frequently linked in the press with a big money move to Tottenham Hotspur but despite the persistent rumours the player would remain with Celtic, who were now managed by his former Hibs boss Tony Mowbray. Injury would effect Brown's preparation for the start of the 2009/10 season but he was soon back at the heart of the action for club and country and on September 5th Scott would net his first international goal in Scotland's 2-0 World Cup qualifier win over Macedonia at Hampden.
However, the season would turn into a disaster for the Bhoys and by early spring Celtic were out of the title race and Mowbray out of a job. The Celtic fans were disgusted by the team's abject performances during a dire trophyless campaign which saw them thrashed 4-0 by St Mirren in the SPL and humiliated by Ross County in the semi-final of the Scottish Cup.
Brown would not escape criticism with some in the support believing the player now represented poor value for money and had brought only an undisciplined and reckless energy to the team. Others though stood firm in their opinion that Brown was a key man for Celtic and gave the team much need tenacity and thrust. New Hoops manager Neil Lennon showed where he stood in this debate when he awarded Scott the Celtic captaincy.
Although disrupted by injury the 2010/11 campaign was a good season for the midfielder. His early season form - when he was often played wide right - was good but then a lengthy injury lay-off followed.
His return to the side in December certainly saw an improvement in the Hoops results, although he missed the New Year victory over Rangers due to a harsh suspension for a red card in a clash with Motherwell. However, he didn't let this get to him and his return to the side saw him link with the returning Kayal to form an incredibly well functioning and effective midfield.
In the Scottish Cup tie at Rangers on February 6th, Brown scored with a sublime curling shot from outside the box to give the 10 men of the Hoops (who had keeper Forster sent-off in the first half) a richly deserved 2-2 draw. If his goal was memorable, his celebration was unforgettable as, with arms out-stretched he cooly turned and faced up to the spitting mad El Hadji Diouf.
The celebration quickly became an iconic moment in Celtic history and inspired the comical and wonderful "Let's all do the Broony!" chant!
Scott would finish the season lifting the Scottish Cup at a rain soaked Hampden. It was a fitting end to a fine season for both player and his team. But with just a year remaining on his contract there remained a question mark over Brown's long term fate. His contract negotiations became protracted and despite the many "he will sign soon" etc articles, the situation reflected poorly on Celtic and Scott Brown. The summer passed with a new contract not signed by our captain, and increasingly many were expecting that it was a case that he was to leave on a free to grab the money! "Celtic should have sold him" to safeguard some money was a common opinion. This carried on, and it was not until Dec 2011 that he signed a contract (and this was after more delays that Celtic would not pay any extra to his agent). Scott Brown didn't necessarily come out it too well and the support seemed to be divided between those who thought he should move on and those who were happy he was staying. He had been injured of late prior to his new contract and so had a lot now to prove. Some cynics would even argue that he signed as there was actually no concrete interest fron other big clubs to sign him (but we'll never know).
Scott Brown had though much turned a corner. He had become pivotal to the first side adding some steel and graft, making those challenges others would avoid and niggling the opposition players to gain a psychological edge. An important player and the leader on the pitch, his worth was felt most when he was out the first team side (due to injury or whatever else). There was nobody else who could replace him for what he could do. He controlled matters on-field and was a tension reliever for the rest of his team-mates with his humour and ability to take the heat off them onto himself.
Winning the league title in 2011/12 as captain was definitely a high point. Lifting the trophy meant much to him. He may not have come as a Celtic fan but he had definitely grown into becoming one. This title win was the least he deserved. The support was fully behind him and was hoping for more. We were seeing the man maturing into what we bought him for.
Sadly, his injury situation was to worsen. He was diagnosed with a degenerative hip injury in August 2012. The manager stated that for his sake he would mostly rest him and consider him only for the Champions League matches. A bitter blow for the team captain that he would not play a major part domestically. He had to have an injection to help him get through the Champions League qualifiers and obviously this is not ideal for any player, his personal long-term health is more important than anything else. However, thankfully he seemed to manage most games without needing to sit on the sidelines and played more than enough matches for people to not even realise his health situation.
The biggest problem for Scott Brown that as much as most Celtic fans would agree that we are a better side with him than without, throughout his time the curious point is that many of our best moments actually came when he was absent. When Celtic won the league title against the odds in 2007/2008, he was Paul Harley & Barry Robson were played ahead of him. When Celtic beat Barcelona in 2012, he was not in the side, when Celtic won our first game against Rangers in a New Years derby in 2011 since 1985, he was absent, and when Celtic beat Ajax 2-1 in 2013 he was suspended. This can't be dismissed. These were high profile matches. Notably, his idiocy against Barcelona in 2013 in the 1-0 defeat for an innocuous flick at the grounded Neymar, lost us the game when we were in the running for at least a draw upto that point in the match. It all can't be ignored.
Playing Career[Table to indicate clubs played for, including dates, transfers and fees where known [e.g. soccerbase table]]
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Honours with CelticLeague:
- 2008, 2012, 2013
- 2011, 2013
SPFA Players' Player of the Year:
| MOTM Winners 2007-08|
|25-Aug-07||Celtic 5-0 Hearts||SPL|
|02-Sep-07||St Mirren 1-5 Celtic||SPL|
|24-Nov-07||Celtic 3-0 Aberdeen||SPL|
|MOTM Winners 2008-09|
|10-Aug-08||Celtic 1-0 St Mirren||SPL|
|30-Sep-08||Villarreal 1-0 Celtic||Champions League|
|18-Oct-08||ICT 1-2 Celtic||SPL|
|25-Oct-08||Celtic 4-2 Hibs||SPL|
|Oct-08||KDS Player of the Month for October '08|
|08-Nov-08||Celtic 2-0 Motherwell||SPL|
|Nov-08||KDS Player of the Month for November '08|
|03-Jan-09||Celtic 2-2 Dundee Utd||SPL|
|10-Jan-09||Celtic 2-1 Dundee||Scottish Cup|
|18-Jan-09||Aberdeen 4-2 Celtic||SPL|
|15-Mar-09||Celtic 2-0 Rangers aet||CIS League Cup Final|
|2009||***KDS Player of the Year 2008-09***|
|MOTM Winners 2009-10|
| May-10 || Joint KDS Player of the Month for May '10|
| 25-Sep-10 || Celtic 2-1 Hibernian || SPL Game 6|
QuotesBut what of the done deal at Rangers that was alleged by various radio stations?
"It just shows you radio stations talk just as much crap as you do. Everyone was saying I had signed for Rangers when I was sitting in my house. They said I was at Murray Park."
Scott Brown to a laughing press pack at his unveiling (2007)
"Some people want to change him but that's just nonsense. You will never do that, it's impossible. He is a character and that's the way he plays, he's in your face and he can't keep his mouth shut at times but he is such an endearing boy when you work with him and, okay, he has other parts to his character that are a little bit, well, different but he is a great boy to work with, a great boy to have around and he is a great example. You talk about us having a core of players and he is one of them."
Craig Levein (Scotland manager) laughs at the idea that a certain amount of mellowing would do Brown more good (2010)
The attributes that make the Scotland midfielder a fit for the Celtic captaincy may sometimes escape outsiders but Izaguirre is gushing over what Brown brings to the squad dynamic. Sharing hour upon hour of gym-time with the fun-loving Fifer, who was building up his fitness following ankle surgery, has the full-back beaming from ear to ear.
“He is crazy, crazy,” says Izaguirre, the phrase the only one he provides in English in the course of an interview otherwise conducted through a Spanish interpreter. “Scott Brown, Kelvin Wilson, Mark Wilson, we were all in the gym together most days and we got support from each other. Spending time in the gym with Scott was crazy. He is very funny, but I think he is a very good captain, he gives us all a lot of support.
“He is always a happy person and is one of a kind in a way. He is always first into training and first to show the rest of the team the way. He supports everybody, and the experience he has of playing here with Celtic and knowing other big players helps. The leadership he shows and the charisma he has is contagious in a way.”
Emilio Izaguierre on Scott Brown in interview with The Scotsman (Jan 2011)
"It was nice to have Broony back and his madness about the changing room as well. You can come into training cheesed off and Broony puts a smile on your face. He gives us energy & it runs through the team."
Kelvin Wilson (May 2013)
Interviewer: "So what's the difference between Scottish Premiership and League One."
Scott Brown: "I don't know. I haven't played in League One...If you come along and watch us or watch them (Sevco) on telly you will see there's a big difference."
Scott Brown (2014)
"Scott is a leader and it is fantastic to have him back. In the first 10 I just had to start laughing. He was tackling the whole pitch."
Ronny Deila on Scott Brown (2014)
“Someone threw a pie at me and I was going to eat it but it fell out of my hands. That’s probably just as well because the gaffer wouldn’t have liked it – there’ s too many carbs in it."
Scott Brown after match v Aberdeen where one of their fans threw a pie at him after he scored (May 2015)
"I enjoy playing with Scott. He does all the ugly side of the game which sometimes he doesn't get credit for.
"But you definitely see it when you play alongside him. Anyone partnering Scott knows the job he does and how valuable he is to this squad.
"He is definitely good enough to be playing somewhere like down south. We've seen it at international and Champions League level what a top-class player he is.
"Does he get the credit he deserves? I don't know. When you play alongside him and watch him closely you can see the job he does."
Charlie Mulgrew on Scott Brown (2015)
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