Why an Aberdeen move for Celtic's squadfather Scott Brown doesn't square

Maybe the cynicism is misplaced, but there seemed a handy degree of promotion for the named parties in the arresting report that Stephen Glass had lined up Scott Brown as his playing assistant should he land the vacant managerial position at Aberdeen.

Celtic's Scott Brown noises up Aberdeen's Lewis Ferguson at the 2018 League Cup final - one of many such teasing moments the long-time pivotal Parkhead figure has indulged in against a Pittodrie side it has been reported he could join in the summer. (Photo by Craig Foy/SNS Group).
Celtic's Scott Brown noises up Aberdeen's Lewis Ferguson at the 2018 League Cup final - one of many such teasing moments the long-time pivotal Parkhead figure has indulged in against a Pittodrie side it has been reported he could join in the summer. (Photo by Craig Foy/SNS Group).

It intimated that Glass, one of the leading candidates to succeed Derek McInnes, has pulling power and bold plans he could bring to the Pittodrie club. Attributes to mitigate the 44-year-old’s top tier frontline experience being limited to a recently ended six-month stint as interim head coach at MLS club Atlanta United, with which Aberdeen have a ‘strategic partnership’.

When it comes to Brown, the revelation would have offered up gentle reminders to current employers Celtic with whom he has been a trophy-snaffling powerhouse for 14 years. The 35-year-old has no intention of retiring from playing when his current contract expires. Glass’s proposal implied that one of the big-hitting clubs in the Scottish game considers the combative midfielder has plenty to offer, not just still on the pitch but now also behind the scenes.

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Brown has been coy about what his future holds beyond this disintegration of a season for the Parkhead club. Celtic’s reset then will result in them being helmed by a new chief executive - Dominic McKay taking over from Peter Lawwell at the end of June - a newly-created director of football and, most importantly of all, a new manager. A one-year contract extension is already on the table for Celtic’s squadfather. The prospective Aberdeen offer suggests it is the very club with which Brown is embedded that ought to make him a link man between the dressing room and the new management team employed to direct operations within that.

Brown’s loss would be felt immeasurably at a juncture when a degree of continuity is imperative. It is no small matter that he commands enormous respect from the entire current Celtic playing pool. For all there will be extensive personnel changes in the summer, the onus for revitalising the Glasgow club’s on-field fortunes will fall on the core of that group.

Even if he does not possess the mobility of old and can no longer be a 50-games-a-season player, Brown has demonstrated he can still anchor Celtic effectively domestically when called upon. The veteran has done so across the eight-game run he is currently on...when he was supposed to be playing permanent second fiddle to the unpolished Ismaila Soro.

On top of all this, it is simply hard to envisage Brown in the red of Aberdeen snarling his way through games against Celtic. It just doesn’t compute. Of course he loves egging the pantomime villainy. But beyond Rangers and Hearts, the enmity for the former Hibs man is greater in Aberdeen circles than anywhere else in Scotland. Assured by his three-finger taunting of the Pittodrie support at Hampden the very instant Celtic’s unbeaten treble was sealed with an added-time winner in the Scottish Cup final of May 2017, and his goading of Lewis Ferguson at full-time of the League Cup final in December 2018 as his team racked up a seventh straight trophy. Among many other wind-ups that seemed to suggest particular antipathy for Aberdeen from Brown. It would be no surprise were he is adding to such moments next season.

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