SCOTT Brown has played in more European ties than any other Celtic player.

That means nobody in the club’s history has spent more hours staring at hotel walls, watching BBC World, whiling away the hours before facing a team with nothing to lose.

For a man who has the attention span of a cat, surely at his age these trips abroad, albeit on business, can get boring. Not a bit of it.

Celtic’s captain is one of life’s enthusiasts, always smiling and joking, even when he has to deal with, in his words, the same faces,

questions and answers, as he met the written press yesterday. To be fair, he had a point.

Brown said: “I enjoy it, going away seeing different countries and

different places. Even though we don’t get to see much of it, we go to different hotels, play different teams in different stadiums. It’s a great luxury to have.

“I think at my age I take more things in than I did when I first signed at 22. Me and Chris Killen would close the doors and just stay the rest of the night in the room. How times have changed.

“It’s always hard because you don’t know where you’re going, you don’t know what like the stadium or pitch is. It’s all right in Scotland because you know what you’re going to get. It’s a little bit of luck that you pull a good team out of the hat with a good stadium and a good pitch. It helps us as well and the weather is meant to be a wee bit rainy so it’s helping us that way as well.

“It’s just to get the fans going again, to get us going, and to get the club in the Champions League. The club is a fantastic club, it’s huge and has supporters all over the world who love those nights. We need to make sure that we get back to those nights. Brendan brought them and Neil wants them as well. That’s the main priority.”

It would have been interesting to see Berti Auld’s reaction had he been handed a personalised pillow designed by a company called SleepAngel. And yet every single Celtic player has been assigned their own pillow for their stay in Sarajevo, to help with shut eye and to reduce the risk of disease spreading.

Back in Berti’s day the players had to put up with filthy hotels, barely edible food, bedbugs, late night fire alarms and all sorts of nonsense. To be fair, they did okay. Modern footballers are so spoiled . . .

Brown said: “We had a company come in to try and help us get a bit comfier and to stop the spread of diseases and germs in hotels. We get our own individual pillows when we go away and the club make sure they’re in the hotels when we go, and you get the opportunity to take one on the bus or the plane. It’s good what they’re doing.

“We get our own mattresses and pillows at hotels back home but it’s different coming away here because you can’t take mattresses and that.

“I think it’s just what we prefer. You go to different hotels and get all different pillows and that and it’s just whatever suits you better and you get a good night’s sleep. The club seeing it as helping us out in any way they possibly can do.”

Brown still hurts when thinking back to the third qualifying round last season when Celtic lost to AEK Athens, ending their Champions League dreams, at a time when not enough players were available for different reasons. And they didn’t have their own pillows then.

As you would expect with such a competitor, this memory will drive him on.

Brown said: “What happened in Athens was hard to take. We thought we were the better team but we were unlucky. Also, a couple of the lads couldn’t quite make the game. We couldn’t get over the line but it drives us on to get back to the group stage.

“We have watched Sarajevo and they are very direct. They have direct wingers, tricky players who want to put the ball in the net.

“However, we have had a good pre-season and come back and we are in a good place. I’m looking forward to seeing the stadium.”