by John Reid
Embarrassing losses for the Glasgow clubs and controversy in the Edinburgh derby in this week’s round-up.
Celtic followed their exit from the Champions League by going down 3-2 at Ross County. Despite the fact that Celtic were 2-0 up at one stage, County were the better team and deserved their last minute winner from Steffen Wohlfarth. County’s great form continues and they are now up to third in the SPL. It wouldn’t surprise me if manager Derek Adams was a target for ‘bigger’ clubs in the summer. Celtic’s recent inconsistent form continues, and manager Neil Lennon claimed to be ‘furious’ with his players.
Motherwell remain in second after a goalless draw with Aberdeen. There has been speculation about the future of Dons boss Craig Brown as his contract runs out at the end of the season, but nothing has been announced yet.
Dundee’s recent better form continued under new manager John Brown continued, as they followed up the midweek 2-1 win over St. Mirren with a 1-1 draw at Inverness, but they will be disappointed as the Caley equaliser from Billy McKay – who this week signed a new contract – came in the last ten minutes. It seems unlikely that Dundee will stay up but the board will be satisfied with how well Brown has done thus far.
St. Johnstone rebounded from the midweek 2-0 loss to Hearts and moved up to fourth in the SPL with a 2-0 win over Kilmarnock, with goals from Murray Davidson and Gregory Tade.
Dundee United drew 0-0 at St. Mirren in a dull game which was only livened up with the late sending-off of United’s John Rankin, which United boss Jackie McNamara considered harsh and the club may appeal.
The Edinburgh derby at Easter Road ended goalless, but with a storm of controversy as Hibs were denied a win as a Leigh Griffiths free-kick struck the bar and clearly bounced over the line, but the goal was not given by the linesman or referee. The debate over goal line technology will rumble on once more. Hibs boss Pat Fenlon was understandably furious after the game. For Hearts caretaker boss Gary Locke the point was a good result in a game which Hearts controlled for sections off.
It’s as you were in the first division as leaders Morton and second placed Partick Thistle both won, but Thistle can go top if they win at Raith in midweek.
In the second division, Queen of the South won yet again as they defeated Ayr 2-0 to go twenty points clear at the top of the division.
In the third division, Rangers suffered an embarrassing 2-1 defeat at home to Annan Athletic. The result came just a couple of days after Rangers owner Charles Green claimed that this was ‘the worst Rangers team in history’. He might have a point…
Next week’s SPL is split over three days, Hibs travel to Motherwell on Friday night, Celtic playing Aberdeen and the highland derby between Inverness and Ross County on Saturday, and the Dundee derby on Sunday lunchtime. But the biggest game is Sunday’s league cup final between St. Mirren and Hearts at Hampden, an intriguing game as both teams have played poor at times this season, but they will surely raise their game for the final. The round-up will have a full report next week.