Celtic skipper Scott Brown has announced his retirement from international football.
The Hoops star won 55 caps over a 12-year spell representing his country, but he has decided to call it a day so he can focus on his career at Parkhead.
The demands of playing for club and country were too much for the 32-year-old, who produced a moment to live long in the memory in Celtic’s 2-0 win over Aberdeen yesterday.
Brown was poleaxed by a knee-high challenge from Aberdeen’s Sam Cosgrove, but it was his reaction which has gone viral with over two million video views.
He jumped to his feet and smiling, he roared at the crowd before producing a Conor McGregor-style walk on moment.
Scott Brown runs Scottish fitbaw. Many have tried but no one can touch the king. pic.twitter.com/AL1OlR0fWy
— Hoidy (@Hoidy) February 25, 2018
Brown retired from international duty in the summer of 2016 but was talked into reconsidering his stance byformer boss Gordon Strachan in November of that year ahead of a World Cup qualifier against England.
He played a further four times in their qualifying campaign.
He’s so important to #CelticFC!
Describe Scott Brown’s performances this season in one word… o/ pic.twitter.com/xnogESuAQm
— Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) February 25, 2018
“I have spoken to Alex McLeish over the weekend,” Brown told the official Celtic website. “I really wanted to tell Alex first what I was thinking about things.
“As I said to Alex, I felt that, given the demands which are increasing all the time in football and at this stage of my career, I wasn’t able to give both my club and country my best and I needed to focus purely on Celtic at this time.
“The football calendar is more and more demanding now, and in terms of looking after my own body and in interests of my family, I felt now is the right time to take this decision.
“I’ve really enjoyed my time with Scotland and making over 50 caps is something which I’ll always be really proud of. It was a huge honour to pull on the Scotland jersey every time I was given the opportunity and to be able to captain my country is a privilege I will always cherish.”
Brown also issued a message of thanks to all his international managers and to the Scotland supporters, as well as wishing the national team all the best for the future.
He added: “I would like to thank all the Scotland managers I have worked with over a number of years. They have all been great men to work with and supported me brilliantly as a player over so many years. I’ve had the honour, too, of working with some great players – great team-mates and so many lads who always gave their all for their country.
“I would also like to sincerely thank the people who are the most important, the Scotland fans. I have had great support from the Scotland fans. I have always given my best to the Scotland team and I know that all the lads in our squad enjoy playing in front of our supporters, who follow the team home and away in such numbers.
“I want to wish Alex and the squad the very best of success for the future and particularly for the upcoming campaign. I hope he can do what we had always aimed for.
“Obviously I’ll be supporting the lads all the way as they try to get to the Euros.
“We have a very good squad of players and I know they will be doing all they can to take the country to a major tournament. I’ll be right behind them.”
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