30 Apr Scott Brown leads Celtic by example like Henrik Larsson did, says John Hartson
Former Celtic striker John Hartson claims Scott Brown has the same inspirational qualities that Henrik Larsson exhibited in the green and white hoops.
The Parkhead skipper emulated Larsson on Sunday when he became only the second man to win the PFA Scotland player of the year award twice in the 40 years it has existed.
Brown had earlier helped Celtic to their seventh consecutive title and his eighth in total.
Hartson said: “Scott Brown, the way he has captained the team over the last two years, he has led by example.
“I’m not being disrespectful but I think he’s been the best player by a country mile.
“He’s pivotal to Brendan (Rodgers) because when Scott Brown plays, Celtic just seem to go up a gear. We had a player like that in Henrik. When Henrik played we all knew we had a chance. When Scott Brown plays, people look at him and he inspires others around him as well.
“I think he’s a natural leader. It’s not easy to lead. Leading is not about grabbing people by the scruff of the neck in the dressing room or headbutting the walls when you go out.
“Leading is doing it and people follow you. People follow leaders. He just goes and does it.”
Brown was not at the Glasgow dinner to collect the award as he had flown to Tenerife with his team-mates to celebrate their title success hours after a 5-0 victory over Rangers wrapped up the championship.
But he later thanked a number of people in a statement on the Celtic website.
“It is very humbling to be voted the player of the year and I would like to thank all my fellow professionals who voted for me,” he said.
“It’s been said before, but my team-mates, manager and backroom staff are a huge part of this award. Everything we do at Celtic we do together. We win, lose or draw together and we win this award together.
“Our fans have been a huge part of this. They have backed us brilliantly again and this award is for the whole club.”
Rodgers missed out on manager of the year to St Mirren’s Jack Ross but Kieran Tierney made it a Celtic double by claiming the young player award for a record third season running.
The 20-year-old also won goal of the season for a 40-yard strike against Kilmarnock
“Once again this season we have been a real team and fought for everything together so this award is for my team-mates too,” Tierney said.
“We have shown a real togetherness and across a really long season have given everything to bring our fans the success which their support deserves.
“Sunday was another great day for the club and one I will remember for a long time. It was a perfect example of the way we stay together as a team and give our all for the fans.”