Steven Gerrard: Top-flight manager 'out of order' for slamming Celtic player who is real deal
By Richard Parks
Steven Gerrard has slammed Hearts manager Craig Levein for his over-the-top criticism of Celtic midfielder Scott Brown.
The Liverpool legend insisted on BT Sport’s Premier League Tonight show on Saturday evening that Brown is a “really good player’ and claimed that the former Scotland boss was “out of order” for laying into the Hoops skipper.
Brown was recently criticised by Levein for going in too hard on 16-year-old Hearts midfielder Harry Cochrane.
It is not a view shared by England and Liverpool legend Gerrard, as he recalled Brown as one of the toughest midfield opponents he came across during his glittering career after they faced one another when England beat Scotland 3-2 in 2013.
Speaking on BT Sport about the lack of enforcers in the modern game, who are “tough but fair”, Gerrard said: “There’s all different ways to be tough as a footballer. I think some of the ones that look tough and bounce around the football pitch acting tough are probably the ones that are not.
“I think where this comes from is Scott Brown. I’ve played against Scott Brown and he’s a tough competitor, a really good player.
“I think it’s out of order saying he’s not fair, especially the career he’s had. It all comes down to him going tough on a young kid who plays for Hearts.
“But I think that’s the game and too much of it is going out of the game.”
Cochrane suffered an injury to his collarbone after a challenge from the Celtic captain during Hearts’ defeat on Tuesday.
“I think everybody should get a bit more protection from Scott Brown really. But we will see,” said Levein.
Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers defended Brown as a “top-class” player who aims to dominate every game he plays.
Brown has picked up nine yellow cards this season but was last sent off against Ross County in April, his only red card in three seasons.
In other Celtic news, it can be revealed that a key first teamer has sensationally asked to leave after the board failed to stick to their promise of giving him a new deal during the transfer window.
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