Celtic V Dundee Utd at Celtic Park : Match Preview

10 May 2014 12:31
Celtic V Dundee Utd - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game live.

Brown rues defeat by Dons

Celtic skipper Scott Brown will not let a single defeat by Aberdeen spoil an otherwise comprehensive title win but admits the result still nags at him.

The Hoops midfielder will collect the Scottish Premiership trophy after the last game of the season against Dundee United at Parkhead on Sunday and if Neil Lennon's side avoid defeat then only Aberdeen will have taken all three points from them in 38 matches.

The Dons' 2-1 win over Celtic at Pittodrie in February ended the visitors' 26-game unbeaten run but ultimately made no difference to the Hoops' quest for three in a row.

"It's not spoiled the season," said Brown. "We've won the league by nine or 10 games but it is hurting and it's in the back of our heads.

"It's the one that kind of got away. We could have went through the league without defeat but it's not to be.

"We've won the league and that's the main thing.

"In every single league match we've played in we've done really well, even when we were defeated.

"We were a little bit unlucky to go down to 10 men in that game."

Brown is looking forward to getting his hands on the trophy again but the match against United will not be the final appearance of the season for him.

He will play in Scotland's friendly against Nigeria at Craven Cottage on May 28 before he goes on holiday and is pleased that he has remained injury-free in this campaign after having an operation on a troublesome hip last season.

He said. "It's been enjoyable. I knew I could do it.

"I needed the operation at the time. Maybe it wasn't the best idea to hold off but I wanted to play in the last-16 (of the Champions League) like everyone in that dressing room.

"This season has been great for me.

"I've managed to train every day and be involved and that's what I'll try to do from now to the end of my career."

United boss Jackie McNamara may well rest some of his players ahead of next week's William Hill Scottish Cup final against St Johnstone at Celtic Park.

Brown said: "They've got a few injuries as well so it's going to be hard for them.

"But it's not about Dundee United. That day is going to be about us and how well we've done in the league and why we deserve the trophy."

Lennon is hoping to have Georgios Samaras back after the Greece forward missed the last couple of games with a virus.

Dundee United defender Mark Wilson insists he wants to face former club Celtic on Sunday - even if it costs him his place in next week's William Hill Scottish Cup final.

Lennon's team will collect the Scottish Premiership trophy after their Parkhead clash with the Tangerines.

But most of the United squad will only be thinking about their return to Glasgow's east end six days later when they face St Johnstone with the season's final piece of silverware at stake.

Wilson, though, will have no second thoughts about taking on the new Scottish champions if asked by boss Jackie McNamara, even though the potential for bumps and bruises - or worse - could jeopardise his cup final chances.

Wilson - a double Scottish Cup winner with Celtic - told Press Association Sport: "We have been chatting about it over the last few days. Everyone obviously wants to play in the cup final, so we were wondering if the manager would play his cup final team that he would put out against Celtic or would he rest a few.

"It would be a disaster to pick up an injury on Sunday and then rule yourself out for next week.

"I don't envy the manager having to pick a team for the weekend.

"But I don't want to miss out any game. We're playing Celtic, they are getting presented with the league trophy so the atmosphere will be bouncing - I definitely want to play and I think most of the boys will be the same.

"Even if you did pick up a wee knock there should still be plenty of time to recover. The only fear would be if you got something serious. That would be a sickner."

Winger Gary Mackay-Steven is on course to return to the team against Celtic after a chest infection kept him out of the Aberdeen game.

Defender John Souttar has been suffering from flu so will be assessed for the Scottish Premiership match nearer kick-off.

John Rankin and Paul Paton might not be risked ahead of the Scottish Cup final after missing the Aberdeen defeat with knocks while Curtis Good (hip) and Calum Butcher (toe) remain out.

Source: PA