Steven Gerrard has led a nearly-perfect Rangers to a first Scottish Premiership crown since 2010-11, the year before the club was liquidated and new ownership granted a place in the third division.
Rangers have 28 wins and four losses this season in ending historic rivals Celtic’s bid for a 10th-straight title, the final blow coming when Celtic drew 0-0 at Dundee United on Sunday.
Celtic and Rangers had each ended each other’s bids to win 10-straight domestic titles prior to this season, and it’s unlikely either will make such a run again.
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But enough about Celtic (until later in this post).
Gerrard’s third season in Glasgow has been spectacular. After claiming 2.15 points-per-game in 2018-19 — his first season as a manager — the Liverpool legend picked up 2.20 last season and has 2.75 per game this year.
Rangers beat Celtic in both Old Firm derbies and have a 20-point lead on second and 36 on third. They’ve scored 77 goals and conceded nine in 32 games, with three of the league’s top five scorers and three of five assist leaders as well.
Moreover, Gerrard can now focus on the Europa League’s Round of 16 tie against a Slavia Prague side that sent former Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers’ Leicester City out of the tournament.
We Were Down
We Are Rangers
We Are Relentless
WE ARE CHAMPIONS#Champion55 pic.twitter.com/rDsauzrfFb
— Rangers Football Club (@RangersFC) March 7, 2021
What’s happened to Celtic?
Ten in a row seems likely to never happen after Celtic blew a historic chance to claim 10-straight Scottish Premiership titles, ending their bid with another insipid performance in a 0-0 draw with St. Mirren on Sunday.
The club refused to part ways with Neil Lennon for most of the season despite myriad signs of failure.
Falling at home to Ferencvaros in the second qualifying round of the Champions League, the Scottish giants barely got past Riga and Sarajevo in Europa League play before getting hammered in a tough group but also losing 4-1 home and away to Sparta Prague.
The Europa run came after an Oct. 17 home loss in the Old Firm derby kicked off a run of one win in five league fixtures, and Nov. 29 saw them bounced by Ross County at home in the Scottish League Cup.
There was just no guts in a previously-hearty squad. They lost another Old Firm on Jan. 2 and wandered through three-straight draws.
Celtic has dropped points in 12 matches this season after winning all but 15 over the previous two. James Forrest and Christopher Jullien have been missed but it’s been far worse than a couple of long-term absences.