Celtic star: It won’t be long until fan attacks player with weapon

Scott Brown has expressed concerns over players being attacked by pitch invaders carrying weapons following the confrontation between a Hibernian supporter and Rangers captain James Tavernier at Easter Road on Friday evening.

Celtic captain Scott Brown. Picture: SNS
Celtic captain Scott Brown. Picture: SNS

The Celtic captain branded the incident a “disgrace” and backed Hibs chief executive Leeann Dempster’s view that the perpetrator “is not really a fan” but “a hooligan”.

Speaking after his side’s scoreless draw at home to Aberdeen, the 33-year-old said the warning signs must be acted upon. Brown has personal experience of a fan attack after a Rangers supporter attempted to get to him during Celtic’s 5-1 win at Ibrox in April 2017.

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“You just don’t realise it is happening when someone runs up to you,” he said. “Lucky enough they don’t have something to hit you with because that is going to be the next thing – someone is going to run on the park and hit someone with something. We have got to make sure that doesn’t happen.

“Usually it doesn’t happen that often in Scotland. Our football couldn’t be in a better place right now. We have done well in the Champions League and the Europa League and we just need to get back to focusing on the football instead of individuals killing the game and making it more about them than it is about the teams.”

Meanwhile, caretaker boss Neil Lennon admitted his team had suffered a comedown on the back of recent events as they dropped their first Premiership points at home this season.

“It felt a little bit flat and leggy, but I understand that,” said Lennon, taking charge for the first home game of his second spell following the wins away to Hearts and Hibs.

“They didn’t have time to adjust last week, and it always felt there would be a bit of a lull and you saw that here. It was more psychological than anything, they just lacked that bit of pizzazz in the final third. But we’ve had three really diffusely games to negotiate in ten days and we’ve come out of it unscathed.”