In Focus: Brown extension of international career would be blow to Celtic

As reported by The Daily Record, Celtic midfielder Scott Brown is ready to extend his international career to another qualifying campaign, as long as Gordon Strachan isn’t given the boot by the SFA.

What’s the story?

The future look of the Scotland set-up isn’t yet known, with Strachan’s job yet to be discussed formally by the SFA hierarchy and some ageing players having not yet committed to another long and difficult qualifying gauntlet.

However, it seems that one scenario is emerging and that’s a continuation of the status quo with captain Scott Brown and Gordon Strachan remaining to lead the Tartan Army forward.

That’s according to The Daily Record, who say the Celtic legend is keen on staying on should his former club manager escape the sack.

A source told the paper:

Everyone expects Broonie to call it a day now that the World Cup has gone but the truth is he has loved every minute of being involved in this campaign and he is absolutely convinced that the team Strachan has put together will qualify for the Euros. As far as he is concerned the manager is the only man for the job and if Strachan does stick around for another campaign then he would love to be a part of it.

Given the up turn in form of the national team when he came back into the fold after initially retiring from international football, this could be seen as good news for Scotland, but what does it mean for Celtic?

Club vs Country

At 32 years of age, Brown is no spring chicken and continuing with double duties for club and country without the rest that an international break could offer him might not play out well moving forward.

The midfielder has defied all expectations to produce the best performances of his career over the last 18 months, after a period of playing with injuries and significant fitness issues. So far international football hasn’t fazed him, but with that injury history, how long can that continue?

Last season, the Hoops captain played more matches than any other outfield player, 54 in total, and this season that has continued, starting all but two of Celtic’s 18 matches so far.

Focusing on Brendan Rodgers’ Celtic project would likely allow him to perform to an even higher standard than he has already set and the last thing the Scottish champions need is for him to pick up injuries on international duty.