SCOTT BROWN will be warned he must curb his own natural enthusiasm – or risk being out of action for even longer than three months.
Celtic manager Ronny Deila last night confirmed the news that the hamstring his skipper tore while playing against Rapid Vienna on Sunday could keep him out until October.
That means the 29-year-old will miss all of the Champions League qualifiers – which kick off next Tuesday against KR Reykjavik – and the play-off games.
If Celtic make it to the group stage, Brown will also be sidelined for the opening two games. He will also be ruled out of the first seven games of the defence of their Premiership title.
And the midfield powerhouse will be absent for Scotland’s opening Euro 2016 clash with Germany in September.
Brown has a reputation for pushing himself to the limit to defy medical predictions and return to action ahead of schedule.
However, the inherent danger of trying to do this with a hamstring injury as serious as the one he has suffered has been underlined to Brown.
Any relapse could put him back to square one, which would mean a lay-off much longer than the three months he faces.
Deila confirmed: “It is not positive news for Scott. He will be out for two months, maybe three.
“The hamstring has been almost ripped off. Scott doesn’t need an operation, which is a positive. However, it is quite a big injury.”
Although the main signing deadline for participation in the ties against Reykjavik passed yesterday, Celtic can still add one more player up to 24 hours before the first-leg tie.
But Deila is not expected to make any rush buys to cover for Brown. He added: “We have good midfielders who can step up.”
Nir Biton was brought back after a four-month lay-off with a hip and thigh injury in last night’s 5-2 win over LASK Linz, the third game in Celtic’s pre-season build-up.
The Israeli international will now be given more game time against Dukla Prague on Friday and then be in contention for a start in Iceland next week.
Teemu Pukki has also propelled himself into the manager’s plans after hitting his first-ever hat-trick for the Hoops in last night’s victory, which was achieved despite losing Liam Henderson to two yellow cards.
The club must wait to see if the referee reports the dismissal, then check with the SFA to discover if the 18-year-old must serve a ban for the sending-off.
“I was very happy with the attitude of the boys,” Deila told Celtic’s official website. “It was 100% from the start, there was tempo in the game and there were a lot of good performances as well.
“The performance was what I wanted and I’m happy for that and we will move on from this.”
Deila was happy to see Pukki score his fourth goal in three games and said: “It’s very important that he is scoring. He is improving every day and he still has to get better fitness, as do the rest of the players, but he is looking good.”