Why Stephen Glass doesn't want Scott Brown to play for Celtic tonight

By David Walton

April 21, 2021

Aberdeen manager Stephen Glass has admitted that he doesn’t want Scott Brown playing for Celtic tonight, but only because of how good a player he is.

Brown will join up with Glass at Pittodrie this summer after his Celtic contract expires. The legendary Hoops figure will leave after a trophy-laden 14 years at Parkhead – joining up at Pittodrie as the club’s new assistant-manager in a player/coaching capacity.

Of course, the Celtic captain still has several games to negotiate before his time here is up. Trips to Pittodrie, Ibrox, and Easter Road all lie in wait before Brown’s contract is up – the first of those coming tonight.

But Glass has stated he doesn’t want his future colleague to play in the game. Not because of the awkwardness of the situation however, but because he feels Brown remains one of Celtic’s best players.

“I would prefer he doesn’t play”

As quoted by the Scottish Sun, Glass said: “The reason Scott Brown is coming is because he’s a top, top professional. Top professionals go into games trying to win for their teams. So I have no doubt that, if Scott plays, he will be doing everything he can with no concern he is coming to Aberdeen next year. And that’s the reason why we want him at the club.

“None of our players expect anything different, none of his team-mates expect anything different. Scott will be coming up here, playing or not playing, determined that Celtic win.

“I would prefer he doesn’t play, purely for the fact that I don’t want the best Celtic players to play, not because he is coming here next year. I won’t speak to him until after the game, out of respect for him, out of respect for John (Kennedy), and so I can go into the game knowing I have not tried to influence anything in any way, shape or form as well.”

Stephen Glass comments unsurprising, but no reason for Celtic to play Brown

You would expect this kind of diplomatic answer from Glass. He seems an impressive figure, and has handled himself well in the media early on in his Aberdeen career.

However, there really is no reason for Celtic to play Brown tonight. Considering there’s nothing left to play for, there’s no valid excuse to throw him in to what will still be such an awkward situation.

Picture it. A 50-50 ball in the middle of the park between Brown and Lewis Ferguson. Both go in wholeheartedly and the latter comes off worse. Perhaps even needs to go off injured. Does that ingratiate Brown into the hearts of Aberdeen fans early on? It does anything but. Sure, this scenario is a stretch, but it can easily happen.

Celtic captain Scott Brown in action v Rangers / (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

More importantly from a Celtic perspective, we should be placing our concentration on the talent that is scheduled to be here next season. The likes of Ismaila Soro and co deserve more game-time. With some big high-profile matches still to be played, it would allow players such as the Ivorian to get used to our toughest domestic fixtures.

The Aberdeen-Brown subplot is an interesting one. Had we won at Ibrox on Sunday you could easily have seen the reason for playing him too. But his performance combined with what’s happening in the long-term future should make Kennedy think twice about starting him.

Let’s see what happens tonight!

In other news, Kennedy has explained what his first meeting with Dom McKay will be about.