Rangers claimed the first silverware of the season as they defeated Aberdeen 1-0 in Sunday’s Viaplay Cup final at Hampden.
It was also a good weekend for Philippe Clement’s side in the cinch Premiership title race as city rivals Celtic slumped to consecutive league defeats for the first time in a decade.
Hearts moved up to third after their first league win at Celtic Park since 2007 and there were narrow victories for Dundee and St Johnstone.
Here, the PA news agency looks at five things we learned from this weekend’s action.
James Tavernier underlines his value to Rangers
Rangers looked like they might be taken to extra time by Aberdeen until free-scoring captain James Tavernier popped up with an exquisite finish inside the box to settle the match in the 76th minute. It was the 32-year-old’s 115th goal since joining Gers eight and a half years ago and his 15th goal in 30 matches this term as he continued his remarkable strike-rate.
Aberdeen turn focus to league after cup runs end
There was deep disappointment for Aberdeen as they failed to muster a shot on target in Sunday’s final. However, with their European campaign and League Cup runs now over, the Dons can at least start to focus fully on climbing the Premiership. Currently 10th, they must rouse themselves in time for Wednesday’s match at home to struggling Livinsgton.
Divisions deepen at Celtic Park
There has been a constant reminder of issues between the board and some Celtic fans in recent weeks with the absence of the banned Green Brigade resulting in a flat atmosphere. The biggest noise on Saturday came with chants of “sack the board” and personal attacks on chairman Peter Lawwell, while anger almost spilled over in the main stand. Hearts were well worth their 2-0 win and the deficiencies of Celtic’s summer transfer business were highlighted by the fact that only one of the eight arrivals featured throughout the 90 minutes. With Rangers now five points behind with two games in hand, Celtic need to get their January activity right.
Scottish football is ‘shocking’
That was the blunt assessment of Ross County manager Derek Adams, who was clearly stung by Dundee defender Joe Shaughnessy’s winner with the last kick of the ball. Adams returned to Dingwall following eight years in England with Plymouth, Bradford and Morecambe, but he has not been impressed. Adams emphatically burst the game’s bubble days after Scottish clubs saw off Feyenoord, Eintracht Frankfurt and Real Betis in Europe. “The standard since I’ve come back to this country is shocking,” Adams said. “I’ve left a club that is 100 times better and we had the lowest budget in League Two. I just see some of the things that happened and think, ‘Seriously?’ I don’t see any entertainment. If this is the best we’ve got in the country, what are we going to do?” Time will tell whether his comments gee up his own players or opposition teams.
Liam Kelly gains redemption
Motherwell skipper Liam Kelly came under fire after taking responsibility for the concession of goals against County and St Johnstone inside four days but he rewarded manager Stuart Kettlewell’s ongoing faith by saving a penalty in a goalless draw with St Mirren. It was the goalkeeper’s second spot-kick save in five games.