SCOTT BROWN is an unlikely goal hero, but the Celtic skipper came to the rescue when the champions were deadlocked 1-1 by Hamilton Accies this season.
On the Wednesday evening of February, the fans at Parkhead could hardly believe what they were witnessing.
It looked as though everything was going according to script when Ryan Christie, with his 17th strike of the campaign, rifled the side into the lead in the 13th minute. But it remained that way until a minute from time when Marios Ogboe levelled.
Two points were drifting towards oblivion as the Lanarkshire outfit retreated into defence in depth as they sensed a glorious stalemate at the home of the champions.
Brown had other ideas, though, and once again displayed the leadership qualities that persuaded Gordon Strachan to splash £4.4million – then a record transfer fee between Scottish clubs – to sign him from Hibs in 2007.
The influential 34-year-old former Scotland international captain surged into attack to pick up a pass and race into the penalty box before slotting an angled drive wide of keeper Luke Southwood. It was a crucial goal on a night when the champions moved two points ahead of Steven Gerrard’s Ibrox outfit who had been held to a 2-2 draw with Aberdeen at Pittodrie.
Including his points-clinching effort against Accies, the team’s stalwart has claimed five strikes in this campaign – two against Hibs in the 5-2 Betfred League Cup semi-final win in December, one against Livingston in the 4-0 home victory the previous month and a close-ranger flick against Clyde in the 3-0 Scottish Cup victory at Broadwood in January.
Brown, speaking to the Celtic View, admitted: “I’m just happy to score whenever I can. The last couple of seasons, I’ve mostly sat in front of the back four trying to take the play, break it up and cover as my team-mates move forward. Sometimes, though, whenever the chance opens up, I’m happy to take the ball forward.”
The veteran Hoops campaigner is one of 10 performers in the running for the Dafabet Celtic Player of the Year Award.
You can vote HERE to nominate your choice for the honour.
TOMORROW: The Broony Files.