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Tuesday, March 30, 2010
Brown: Lennon a "great choice" for Celtic boss

Celtic skipper Scott Brown believes Neil Lennon would be a "great choice'' to manage the club on a long-term basis.

Lennon enjoyed a winning start in his interim role when Celtic beat Kilmarnock 3-1 on Saturday in the Scottish Premier League. The former Parkhead captain stated his desire to retain the post on a permanent basis immediately after replacing the ousted Tony Mowbray last week.

And Brown is sure his experience of playing for a successful Celtic team and his respect among the players will give him a chance. "If you ask all the lads, he's a leader,'' the Scotland midfielder said.

"He has been there and done it all, and the players all respect him as well, so he would be a great choice. There was a lot of pressure on him in the first game but it was a good start.

"We played good football and looked an attacking team that was going to score goals. There are seven games left in the league and we've got to win all seven of them. There is a trophy as well and that's our main aim.''

Winning the Scottish Cup and cutting Rangers' lead in the Scottish Premier League could see Lennon emerge as a serious contender for the role. But more experienced managers such as former Blackburn and Manchester City boss Mark Hughes have also been linked with the position.

"It shows you how big a pull Celtic is,'' Brown said. "It's a great club with a lot of fans as well. A lot of managers will want the job but at the minute Neil is doing well and at the end of the season we'll see what happens.''

Brown retained the captain's armband for Saturday's game and he is determined to vindicate Lennon's trust. "It means a lot,'' the 24-year-old said. "I'm glad he has stuck by me, now I need to repay him. I enjoy it.

"I go out on the park and give 110% and cheer the lads on anyway no matter if I'm captain or not. I just go out and play my game. The main thing is we go out on a Saturday or Sunday and win.''

Brown admits Lennon will be a good source of advice given his many years of experience in his position. "He has been there and done it all,'' the former Hibernian midfielder said. "He has taken them to a UEFA Cup final and dealt with the pressure and he knows what it's all about. If I've got any queries I'm sure I'll ask him.''

Brown, as last year's winner, today launched the voting for the PFA Scotland player of the year awards. While not naming his choice, he listed Rangers pair Steven Davis and Steven Whittaker as contenders along with Motherwell winger Jim O'Brien and Hibernian striker Anthony Stokes, both of whom are also eligible for the young player's award.

But he insisted the award could stay at Parkhead despite their disappointing season, with Aiden McGeady and Landry NGuemo two players who he feels have done themselves justice.

"If you look at Aiden, especially at the start of the season he was flying,'' Brown said. "We had a wee unlucky patch but Aiden was still playing well so he's done his part.'' He added: "When I won the award last year I was lost for words. It's probably the biggest honour you could wish for.''

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