By Connor Park
FORMER Scotland assistant manager, Peter Houston has hailed Scott Brown as the ‘perfect fit’ as the Tartan Army prepare to head south for tomorrow’s night’s crunch World Cup Qualifier against England.
Houston, current Falkirk manager and former Celtic FC scout, admits he has been a long term admirer of Brown going right back to the days when he was preparing dossiers of information for Neil Lennon ahead of Celtic’s crunch Champions League battles.
Welcoming the 31-year old’s return to the national set-up, Houston said: “It can only be good if he’s fit and has gotten over his knock. Scott Brown in these types of games of the perfect fit for the way we need to play.
“He gets people in about him and drags them through matches too because of his energy, tenacity and he verbally gets players going.
“Sometimes we as a country need people like that, we’ve had Billy Bremner’s and Graeme Souness’, Broony is a big influence and he rubs off on other people too.
“When you work closely with Scott you can see the immense talent he has. I used to say that to Lenny (Neil Lennon) before European games.
“I remember when he wasn’t there for Celtic they went across to Barcelona and lost heavily. You don’t realise until he’s not there the influence that he has on the team.
“It’s good that he’s back, whether that’s in the long term or not I don’t know, but hopefully he’s 100% fit, because I think the Scotland players that are alongside him would rather have him than not.”
Houston knows just how tough a match it will be and insists that every man in dark blue must go out and fight both on and off the ball. He commented:
“We need to go and scrap it out with them and defend properly, work really hard and try to keep the ball.
“When we’re not in possession of the ball it’s vital that we don’t give away cheap goals, that’s something that Scotland have always been guilty of.
“Last time out at Wembley we started well with Kenny Miller getting that fantastic goal, no doubt it’s a big, big task and a draw would be a brilliant result in my opinion.
“Never, ever rule Scotland out though, you never know what can happen.”