Former Scotland captain Colin Hendry has hailed Craig Brown for his people skills as he paid tribute to his former international manager.
Hendry called Brown “Faither” during a social media post on Monday after news broke of the former Scotland manager’s death at the age of 82 and described him as the biggest influence on his career.
The former Rangers and Blackburn defender explained how important Brown had been to him after his career ended, with his response following the death of Hendry’s wife, Denise, in 2009.
He told Sky Sports News: “He is rightly recognised as Scotland’s greatest manager. Not just that, he was a lovely, lovely human being.
“When I lost my late wife back in 2009 and the period when I was a carer to her, there were a lot of times I would speak to Craig. It could just be a text message now and again, being dropped in, just thinking about me.
“After I lost Denise, about three months later, Craig was in the Preston area with Archie Knox. The doorbell went and there’s Craig and Archie. They said ‘right, we are taking you out for a beer’ in Lytham St Annes, where I lived at the time.
“Just little things like that, all of a sudden you get reassurance from people around you that they are looking out for you and they do support you.
“And Craig was the master of that. He was very, very good at making sure everyone was OK.”
Hendry’s former Scotland team-mate, Ally McCoist, remembered another side of Brown’s character.
“He was hilarious, he was brilliant,” McCoist said on TalkSPORT. “He was so friendly, had time for everybody. Loved a laugh, man, just loved a laugh. I can always see him with a big smile on his face.
“We’re playing Portugal in Lisbon, and all of a sudden we’ve got their team lined up but this guy comes from left-field, Rui Barros, I think his name was.
“A wee guy called Rui Barros. None of us knew him – where’s Rui Barros come from?
“Andy Roxburgh’s the manager at the time and Wee Broony stood up at the team meeting and says ‘forget it lads, don’t worry about him, Rui Barros – that size – don’t worry about him. He could walk under a table with a top hat on’. We’re all falling about laughing.
“Anyway – four hours later when Rui Barros has scored two and we’ve been battered all over the place in Lisbon, we’re like that: ‘Bleeper, you’ll need to give us a wee bit more on that Rui Barros next time’.
“He was fantastic, he really was, a very good coach, a great manager. All the boys loved him.”