Former Celtic captain Roy Aitken believes current skipper Scott Brown has still got too much to offer the Parkhead club to consider quitting for Australia.
Brown, 33, is out of contract at the end of the season and is wanted by Western Melbourne. He is free to talk to other clubs in January but Aitken – who quit Celtic in 1990 at 31 to sign for Newcastle – said he’d be surprised if Brown left.
“It will be Scott’s choice,” said Aitken. “I made mine after playing for 15 years and having been at the club for 18 years to go to Newcastle. It was just prior to the Italy World Cup and it felt like the right time for me to leave. I wanted to go out on a high.
“Things were changing at the club and it was time for me to take the family away from the goldfish bowl I’d been in for all those years. The negativity that was coming from different sections was starting to affect me so it was time to leave. I can’t answer for Scott. All I can say is that he’s playing very, very well, he’s in a terrific team and is doing a great job as captain, which he’s done consistently.
“He leads by example. He’s decided to step away from the Scotland set-up to give himself a little bit more of a chance with Celtic so that was a big step for him as well.
“Scott did that for the right reasons. Now it’s up to him to decide what his next stage is. I would be very surprised if Scott Brown doesn’t continue playing for another few seasons. I think he’s got too much to offer on and off the field because he’s a leader.”
Aitken was speaking after being inducted into the Scottish Football Hall of Fame along with Archie Knox, Ian McMillan and Julie Fleeting.