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Deila criticism 'harsh', says Brown

By Ronnie Esplin

Celtic skipper Scott Brown claims criticism of manager Ronny Deila has been "harsh" and believes the Hoops can go the rest of the season unbeaten.

Following an ignominious exit from the Europa League where the Scottish champions finished bottom of their section, the Norwegian came under more pressure after the 2-1 home defeat by Motherwell on Saturday, despite still leading Aberdeen at the top of the Scottish Premiership by one point and with a game in hand.

Former Celtic striker Andy Walker, now a pundit, claimed the Hoops' style of play was "dull and uninspiring" while former midfielder and ex-assistant manager, Alan Thompson, said the Parkhead club have been "pedestrian" and an online petition to sack Deila has been started.

Brown, out with a long-term knee injury which will keep him out "probably for another eight weeks", was at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary to present a £5,000 donation to Simpson's Centre for Reproductive Health and he responded to the former Stromsgodset manager's critics.

"I think it is harsh when you are top of the league and your manager is top of the league," said the Scotland captain. "Everyone has their own opinion. We need to kick on and at the end of the season prove them all wrong.

""We have had one poor result and another one a couple of weeks ago against Kilmarnock but if we go on a run of five, six games I am sure it will all be forgotten about.

"The manager did a good job last season. We were really unlucky not to get the treble. This season we have had a slow start but we need to kick on now."

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