Scott Brown shouldn't regret Scotland retirement tonight; it allowed him to make Celtic history

By John Reid

November 12, 2020

In a few hours time, Scotland will play their biggest game in many years against Serbia in the Euro2020 play-offs. A win for Scotland would end a 22-year wait to qualify for an international tournament.

Four Celtic players could be involved in the game. Ryan Christie, Callum McGregor, Greg Taylor and Leigh Griffiths.

One Celtic mainstay that probably wishes he is playing in the game is Scott Brown. The former Scotland skipper announced his retirement from international duty in February 2018.

Would have relished play-off game

The play-off is the type of game that Brown would have relished. Nothing would have made him prouder than to have led Scotland to an international tournament.

However, Brown should have no regrets about his international retirement. Indeed, it could be argued that quitting Scotland has allowed the player to prolong his Celtic career.

Brown is currently 35-years-old. He retired from Scotland duty at 32, and since then has led Celtic to two league titles, and a ‘treble treble’, with the prospect of winning another treble only one game away. That history-making run might not have been possible if Brown had kept playing for Scotland.

If Brown had continued to play international football, he could have been more liable to pick up an injury due to the extra games.

Wear and tear would have increased

The amount of wear and tear on the player’s body would have increased, and it would have been difficult to recover from an international game then have to play a domestic game only 48-72 hours later.

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

Therefore, Brown should be content with how his international career played out. No doubt he is a bit annoyed that he didn’t get to play in an international tournament, but the same thing happened to an entire generation of Scottish players.

His achievements with Celtic in this trophy-laden spell should also please Brown. There is no guarantee he would have achieved so much with the Hoops had he not hung up his boots for Scotland.

In other news, Celtic should ask a bold question in the January transfer window.