SCOTT BROWN, the Celtic captain, has launched a scathing attack on former Parkhead player Andy Walker and also revealed he has played his last game of the season now Celtic have all but clinched the title. After a season blighted by injury and loss of form, Brown was back to his best on Saturday as Celtic defeated Hearts 3-1 at Tynecastle to effectively seal a fifth consecutive championship. Walker, a pundit for Sky Sports, has been a regular critic of Ronny Deila’s side this season, branding them “dull and uninspiring” and calling for Deila to be sacked in February following Celtic’s second loss of the season to Aberdeen. Brown took the opportunity to respond, labelling former striker Walker “a poor man’s Gary Neville”.

“At the end of the day people are going to criticise,” he said. “Andy Walker is one that goes out there and manages to do it, but he’s never had a manager’s job or knows what it’s like to be coming in here day in, day out. He’s pretty much a poor man’s Gary Neville. It’s every day, he does my f*****g box in.

“I’m sure he would say when he was playing many years ago that there were so many coming out and slaughtering people too. But you think people are bigger than that and better than that and maybe stick up for the club and manager a bit more. At the end of the day who cares, it’s only him.

“It’s the manager that has got it more than anyone else and it’s easy for him [Walker] sitting up there saying things [on television]. Anybody could do that but he walks out the tunnel and doesn’t even look in anyone’s eyes and puts his head down. So he obviously knows he’s done something wrong.

“He knows he’s been in this situation before and didn’t win that much when he was [a Celtic player]. Sometimes you’ve got to take it on the chin but maybe he is just jealous.”

Brown, meanwhile, will sit out Celtic’s final three league games of the season and probably also Scotland’s friendly double-header against Italy and France as he looks to rest up ahead of the new campaign. The 30 year-old has been plagued with injuries throughout the campaign and hopes a complete break with allow him to return in better shape by the time the Champions League qualifiers roll around in July.

“I think that’s me done and dusted now,” he admitted. “I need to close down for a few weeks and just concentrate on my fitness, try and get back to getting around the park because I’ve been struggling to do that. I’ve been sitting in front of the back four the past few weeks and you could see on Saturday in the last few minutes I wasn’t moving very well. I’ve got tendonitis in both hamstrings so I just need to chill, settle and go and enjoy my summer.

“My legs went when I was 20! People change their games, get injured during the season and come back and struggle. Everyone has done it, everyone has gone through a bad patch and the fans get on top of you. But it’s how you bounce back next season.

“Next season is totally fresh, get a good pre-season under my belt, come back fit as a fiddle and go from there. You continue doing it for as long as you can until someone tells you that’s you f****d. Now it’s feet up, watch the lads play and hopefully we can get three great victories in the last games. I need to go and speak to Gordon [Strachan about Scotland], I don’t know what will happen about that.”

Brown will return to pre-season training under a new Celtic manager but paid tribute to the outgoing Deila, quashing speculation that there was ever a rift in the camp.

“He’ll be remembered, we’ve won two titles in his two years,” he added. “It’s been highs and lows for everybody. It’s been hard for us to get knocked out of two semi-finals at Hampden. Celtic fans expect so much and we didn’t deliver as much as we should have this season but we’ve won the one we really wanted to. He’s put a lot of faith and trust in me and in the last few weeks I shouldn’t have been playing as I’ve got a dodgy hamstring. It’s good to help him out in any way possible and give something back. We’ve always been together, there’s not been any fall outs. That is what has made us so strong.”

Brown also revealed he could have left Celtic in the past but that, unless the new manager doesn’t want him, he will see out the last two years of his deals.

“I’ve had opportunities to leave but I’d never leave unless I was forced to and that might happen one day. The new manager might come in and not like anybody and want to start all over again. Whatever happens, happens but I’ve still got two years left here and I’ll definitely see it out.”