New low for Neil Lennon – 5 things we learned from Scottish Premiership

Celtic lost yet more ground on Rangers.

By Press Association Published: 31 January 2021 - 9.27pm

Celtic suffered more agony as Rangers moved closer to the Scottish Premiership title despite not playing.

A 2-1 home defeat by St Mirren left the Hoops 23 points adrift with just two games in hand.

Elsewhere, there was a significant win for St Johnstone against Kilmarnock, Hibernian beat Dundee United and Livingston and Aberdeen shared a goalless encounter.

Here, the PA news agency looks at five things we learned from the weekend’s action in Scotland.

Neil Lennon hits rock bottom

Neil Lennon looks dejected
Neil Lennon looks dejected (Andrew Milligan/PA)

St Mirren’s first win at Celtic Park in almost 31 years left the under-fire Hoops boss stunned and lost for answers after his side had ended a four-game run without victory days earlier. Lennon said: “I would say this is the lowest point of my management here, over the six years I have been manager.”

St Johnstone on a roll

What a week for Callum Davidson’s team. They kicked things off by stunning Hibs 3-0 to book a place in the Betfred Cup final, then claimed a decent point against third-placed Aberdeen before fighting back from two goals down to claim a 3-2 win at Rugby Park. Saints now have a seven-point cushion separating them from the relegation zone.

Kilmarnock back to the drawing board

A meagre tally of just 24 points from 25 league games was ultimately the deciding factor in Billy Bowie’s decision to dispense with Alex Dyer on Saturday night. The Rugby Park owner struck it lucky when he appointed Steve Clarke in 2017, with two record-breaking campaigns and a return to Europe following. Both Angelo Alessio and Clarke’s assistant have struggled to follow the Scotland boss.

Hibernian set to emerge stronger

Hibs got back to winning ways with a professional 2-0 win over Dundee United, despite leaving in-demand pair Kevin Nisbet and Ryan Porteous on the bench. Jack Ross expects both to stay in Leith after the transfer deadline and he was full of praise for the Tannadice contributions of recent signings Chris Cadden and Jackson Irvine, who set up both goals.

St Mirren top-six contenders

The Buddies moved into the top half of the table with their rare Parkhead triumph, leapfrogging a Dundee United side they put five past in midweek. Jim Goodwin’s side have played three games less than United and have games in hand on all the teams below them. If they can handle eight games in 25 days in February they can go a long way to securing that elusive top-six finish.

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