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  • Brown hails fringe benefits ahead of Pittodrie clash

    Brown hails fringe benefits ahead of Pittodrie clash

    By: Mark Henderson on 27 Oct, 2016 17:30

  • SCOTT Brown was delighted to watch a much-changed Celtic side put Ross County to the sword last night, and he believes his colleagues’ impressive performance has only served to increase the competition for places in Paradise.

    The skipper missed the 4-0 victory over the Highlanders to be with his family after he became a dad for the third time.

    But the midfielder is set to return to the reckoning for Saturday’s showdown away to second-placed Aberdeen and he knows the Hoops must maintain their high standards to prevail against the Dons.

    “We are not going in there just thinking we're going to win,” he said. “Going up to Aberdeen is always hard. It’s a hard place to go as they have some great players and some good pace on the counter-attack, so they will give us a really tough game. We're looking forward to it and there are a few players pushing for starting places who played last night.

    “It’s the way the gaffer wants it to be. We have a strong squad and last night was a great opportunity to use the ones that haven’t had a lot of game-time and for them to prove how good a player they are and to show the gaffer what they can do.

    "It was a perfect opportunity and they did really well to go up to Ross County, which is a hard place for anyone to go, and to win 4-0. It was a great game to watch.”

    The champions lost on both visits to Paradise last season and Brown is anticipating another tough challenge from Derek McInnes’ side, though the 31-year-old reckons the current Celtic team under Brendan Rodgers is a different proposition.

    “We go up there and it’s always hard for us,” he said. “Last season was extremely hard but this is a new season and a new team for us, pretty much, and hopefully we can go up there and get the three points. It’s a game we will look forward to and these games over the past couple of seasons have been great with a great atmosphere.

    “They have come on quite well. They have a lot of pace on the counter-attack and a few new forward options as well so it will be a good test. In the first 10-15 minutes up there it’s a battle and we need to win that and then get the ball down, play our game and try and play our game-plan.”

    A win for the Bhoys would stretch their lead over the Dons to 10 points with a game in hand. While it's a sizeable lead at this early juncture in the season, Brown knows the folly of looking at long-term targets.

    “We just go a game at a time," he said. "If you start thinking that way it all falls apart early doors and we can’t afford that to happen. We have to continue the momentum and keep it going as long as we possibly can, with performances like last night and against Rangers.” 

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