By Noel Whelan

26th Oct, 2020 | 1:17pm

Exclusive: Whelan 'Very Surprised' by unexpected Celtic development

Noel Whelan was “very surprised” by Neil Lennon’s “strange” decision to drop Celtic captain Scott Brown for yesterday’s draw against Aberdeen.

The former Aberdeen and Leeds United striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, suggested that it was a mistake not to start the 35-year-old in what was a “big game”.

Brown dropped to the bench as Neil Lennon switched personnel and formation for yesterday’s 3-3 draw against Aberdeen.

The centre-midfielder was one of a number of casualties from the side that lost the first Old Firm clash of the season last weekend, as the Hoops reverted to 4-2-3-1.

Whelan questioned Lennon’s decision to leave out long-serving captain Brown.

“He is one of the players that you need in your side off the back of two defeats,” he told Football Insider.

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“You need that leadership and that knowhow out there on the field. He is the one player that you depend on to galvanise the team and get hold of players when they are not doing their jobs.

“I found it very strange that he was left out of such a big game against Aberdeen.

“They needed his experience out there on the field. Brown brings the fight, aggression and leadership.

“I was very surprised by Neil Lennon’s decision not to include him in the starting eleven.”

Speaking on the decision after the draw, Lennon told BBC Radio Scotland: “It’s always a difficult decision, but we have to think about the block of games, and the intensity of the games we’ve played in already.

“This is going to be another intense game and a very good challenge, so rotation is important at the minute.”

In other Celtic news, Alan Hutton fiercely defends Celtic 27-yr-old after BBC pundit savaging.