Bhoys make Brown plea
Celtic assistant manager Mark Venus has pleaded with Scotland not to pick Scott Brown.
Last Updated: 23/09/09 9:16am
Celtic assistant manager Mark Venus has pleaded with Scotland not to pick Scott Brown for next month's friendly in Japan if he is not 100 per cent fit.
Brown has been struggling with an ankle problem for the last few weeks and is set to see a specialist to determine the extent of the problem.
The 24-year-old is to be rested for Wednesday's Co-operative Insurance Cup game against Falkirk as Celtic look to avoid any risks with his long-term fitness.
Venus wants Scotland boss George Burley to adopt a similar policy when it comes to less important games.
"We know he's got a weakness in his ankle, an irritation in his ankle, which time and a bit of rest might help," said Venus. "So I think the kid needs a rest.
"But on one hand you rest him, and on the other hand there's talk about him going away with Scotland. Where is the dividing line? When can you rest him?
"There is a chance he could be asked to go to Japan. How do you get round that? I want to put on the record that our football club is right behind the Scotland manager.
"Whenever he needs this club for the right games, hopefully we will want to help out.
"You've got to manage your players as a nation, not just as a club. Are friendly games just to let other players have a go, to see if they can perform for their national team? Or are they to keep taking the same players with niggles and injuries?
"If he's totally fit, 100% fit, he can go. But if he's got a niggle and you play him with an injection, and you want to do that, the bottom line is I'd just bring him back if he's injured.
"There has to be a bit of an understanding between both parties. Are we against Scotland? No, we want Scotland to win. I hope none of the players with niggles have to travel. It's time to get the players rested and look after them.
"Friendlies are a chance, like B squad games, to play other people. You might get a surprise or two from players who haven't been selected before but could come to the fore for their country."