5 things we learned from this weekend’s Scottish Premiership action

Rangers v Celtic – Scottish Premiership – Ibrox Stadium
(Image credit: Jane Barlow)

Rangers stand just two games away from an unbeaten Scottish Premiership season after dishing out a 4-1 mauling to 10-man Celtic.

Here, the PA news agency takes a look at what else we learned from this weekend’s action.

Rangers underline their new status as kings of Scotland

Rangers’ Jermain Defoe celebrates scoring his first Old Firm goal

Rangers’ Jermain Defoe celebrates scoring his first Old Firm goal (Jane Barlow/PA)

Steven Gerrard faced a mountain to climb when he took over at Ibrox in 2018, with Celtic rampant across the city. But how things have changed in the three years since, with Gers now undeniably top dogs in Glasgow. Their 4-1 hammering – sealed thanks to a Kemar Roofe double and goals from Alfredo Morelos and Jermain Defoe – was the club’s biggest derby win since October 2007 and means they have now avoided defeat to Celtic in a top-flight campaign for the first time in 21 years.

Curtain crashes down on Scott Brown

Scott Brown suffered a final slap in the face at the end of a miserable campaign

Scott Brown suffered a final slap in the face at the end of a miserable campaign (Jane Barlow/PA)

After 14 years and 44 derby clashes, the Parkhead skipper was looking to bow out on a high before he calls time on his Celtic career and takes up a new player-coach role at Aberdeen. But instead it was one final dose of indignity as Morelos nutmegged him before rifling home Rangers second goal. And the 35-year-old’s last dance fell flat when was replaced just after Rangers went 3-0 15 minutes into the second half.

Kilmarnock are back in the danger zone

Rangers v Kilmarnock – Scottish Premiership – Ibrox Stadium

Kilmarnock’s guaranteed safety is not in their hands (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Tommy Wright’s side had climbed out of the bottom two with a 3-0 win over Dundee United and taken seven points from three matches ahead of their trip to Motherwell. But their momentum stalled as they took too long to get going in a 2-0 defeat at Fir Park. Guaranteed safety is now out of their hands and they could yet be heading into the final game at Hamilton in danger of automatic relegation.

Hamilton’s fate is back in their own hands

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Accies’ seven-year stay in the top flight looked to be under major threat as Brian Rice’s team saw their form evaporate at the worst possible time. But they claimed their first Premiership win in nine games with Saturday’s 2-1 triumph away to St Mirren to breath fresh life into their survival bid. Now sitting just three points off safety, Hamilton will look to complete another remarkable rescue mission when they round off their season against relegation rivals Ross County and Kilmarnock.

Third is up for grabs

Jack Ross' Hibernian side have Aberdeen creeping up behind them

Jack Ross’ Hibernian side have Aberdeen creeping up behind them (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Aberdeen breathed new life into their bid for a top-three finish with a 2-1 win at Livingston, while Hibernian lost at home to St Johnstone. Third no longer carries the prospect of guaranteed European group-stage football following the Scottish Cup quarter-final results and it would not wipe out the pain of their 3-0 home defeat by Dundee United in the last eight. But Aberdeen can draw level on points with Hibs when they face them at Pittodrie next and pipping the Leith side to third would represent a positive start to the reign of Stephen Glass.

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