Alex McLeish has admitted Scott Brown lacked the required pace to keep up for Celtic in Sunday’s 4-1 defeat against Rangers.
The former Scotland boss, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, insisted the 35-year-old could struggle to compete against the Old Firm pair when he turns out for Aberdeen next season.
The midfielder started and played 88 minutes against Steven Gerrard’s men at Ibrox.
It was his final Glasgow derby for the Hoops as he prepares to join Aberdeen in a player-coach role in the summer.
McLeish, who watched on in person on Sunday, admitted it looked as though Brown’s legs may have finally gone.
As such, he suggested he could come unstuck against the Glasgow giants next term.
“It’s a new chapter for him going up to Aberdeen,” McLeish told Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge.
“He’s served Celtic extremely well, he’s been a veteran in the last few years. When I say that, a real kind of top player for Celtic’s success that they have had. Aberdeen must think they’ve got a good chance of doing something with Scott next season in a certain role.
“Obviously he’s getting to the stage where your legs, you begin to feel them, you’re not as quick around the field, but his knowledge should help him in most of the games next year.
“He could find it tough against the Old Firm again but I would think that he will have good knowledge to get through these other games.
“A player of that consistency, they just know where to go on the pitch. Sometimes, as you grow older and you’re more experienced, people don’t see that.
“You may come off saying: ‘I don’t think I gave my best today,’ but a lot of people won’t see exactly that because they’ll see all the things that you have done basically good.”
Brown played in 43 Old Firm ties during his time at Parkhead, with 21 wins and 16 defeats under his belt.
He has played a total of 41 times this season, with a single goal to his name.