Former Hibs defender Rob Jones reflects on late Newcastle bid for Celtic's Scott Brown

By David Walton

September 23, 2020

Former Hibs defender Rob Jones has stated that Newcastle United came in with an “outrageous” offer to take Scott Brown a week after he had signed for Celtic.

The Hoops signed Brown back in 2007 for a record deal between Scottish clubs at £4.4million (The Guardian). Since then, the midfielder has gone on to become a Celtic icon – winning a ridiculous 21 winner’s medals in Glasgow.

However, it could have been all so different had Peter Lawwell and Gordon Strachan waited another week. That’s because Newcastle, a Premier League club at the time, came in with a late bid that could’ve seen the last 13 years pan out so differently.

Scott Brown has gone on to achieve extraordinary things at Celtic (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

Reflecting on the offer as well as the time when Rangers fans infamously sang about signing Brown, Jones said the following on the Football Daft podcast:

“We all knew he wasn’t going to Rangers. I think conversations had been had and questions had been answered with regards to what Scott Brown was doing. Remember, Scott Brown nearly went in the January window and he stayed until the end of the Cup final.

“But I knew Scott was going to go to Celtic.

“Newcastle came in at the last minute with an outrageous bid. I think he had only been at Celtic for a week and Newcastle offered to double his money to go there. But I think it was all done and dusted quite early.”

10 title shouldn’t make or break Brown’s legacy

Goodness knows how the last 13 years would’ve gone had Brown decided to head south instead. Would we have managed to build this incredible run of success over the last nine years? Would Celtic have been able to win so many domestic battles through the mentality that Brown is such a poster boy for?

Regardless, what mustn’t happen is this season defining Brown. If, for some reason, things don’t go our way this year, the captain deserves to be remembered for a lot more than losing the 10. We have to ensure that legacy remains in tact should the worst happen.

He also doesn’t deserve to be remembered as a player who struggled for form in his final year. Which is why it’s even more imperative that Neil Lennon manages him appropriately this season.

Celtic captain Scott Brown / (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

When all is said and done, we all hope that we’re celebrating what would be the most fitting send off for the captain. With his contract due to expire in the summer, it’s all set up for him to bookend his Celtic career with his greatest achievement yet.

Hopefully the prospect adds some extra motivation to both the player himself and the team as we continue to motor on.

We all know if we fail to win the league this season, there will be a big “what if?” hanging over the captain for eternity. But that pressure doesn’t seem to be holding the Hoops back so far.

Yet win or lose the title this season, we can all thank the heavens that Newcastle were just a touch too late in their bid for our legendary captain.