One aspect of Celtic’s stuttering early season form that can’t be ignored are the performances of Hoops skipper Scott Brown.

Brown has been an incredible servant to Celtic over the years. He has led the Hoops to multiple trophies, and it can be argued that one day there should be a statue of him outside Celtic Park.

However, time catches up with all players, and that seems to be what has happened with Brown so far this season.

Has looked off the pace

He has looked off the pace, and the four-month enforced summer lay-off probably hasn’t done him much good, as you would expect when a player is 35.

No doubt Brown will want to stay in the team as Celtic battle to try and win 10 in a row.

Celtic v Ferencvaros - UEFA Champions League: Second Qualifying Round
Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

However, it would be best for all concerned at the club if Brown was gradually phased out of the side.

Now, that does not mean that he is dropped completely and has no part to play.

Brown still has a huge role to play for Celtic this season. But that does not mean he has to start every game for the side.

He can gradually be phased out and replaced by players that are younger and have more energy. That will help in the very busy schedule Celtic have this season.

Former legends have been phased out

Great Celtic captains of the past have been phased out of the side. Look at Paul Lambert for example.

Celtic v Ferencvaros - UEFA Champions League: Second Qualifying Round
Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

Neil Lennon was in the Celtic side when Lambert’s game time was limited. Therefore, he knows all about when players start to get past their best.

A good thing for Celtic is that the club has players who are ready to step up and take Brown’s place in the side.

The likes of Luca Connell and Ismalia Soro might be at the start of their Celtic careers. However, we won’t know how good they could be until they start playing games on a regular basis.

That could happen once Brown is phased out of the side. It is a big move to take a player who has been a mainstay for Celtic out of the team. However, it is a move that long-term could reap benefits for the Hoops.

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