Rangers were confirmed Scottish Premiership champions after wasteful Celtic somehow drew a blank against Dundee United at Tannadice.
Anything less than a victory for the nine in a row Hoops meant the Ibrox club could celebrate a title win for the first time in 10 years and the Parkhead men helped in their own demise.
The visitors created and missed a barrowload of chances in a lop-sided encounter with United keeper Benjamin Siegrist on top form.
Ultimately, Steven Gerrard’s side were left 20 points clear with six games remaining and will go into the Old Firm clash at Celtic Park on March 21 as champions for the 55th time.
After a decade of league domination for Celtic, and a recent period where they won 12 major trophies in a row, the pendulum has swung to Govan and the Hoops will have to regroup and go again next season, most probably with a much-changed squad.
Celtic’s big team news on the day they lost their title was that winger James Forrest returned to the bench following ankle surgery for the first time since playing a Europa League against Riga last September and he would get on late in the game to bring some positivity to the Hoops camp.
Interim boss John Kennedy made one change from the side which beat Aberdeen in his first game as caretaker manager, with on-loan Southampton attacker Mohamed Elyounoussi in for striker Patryk Klimala.
United boss Micky Mellon brought back Nicky Clark and teamed him up with fellow attackers Lawrence Shankland and Marc McNulty but the home side offered little early threat.
As a plane circled Tannadice trailing a banner which read ‘Can you see us now? #55 titles’ in reference to Rangers’ imminent 55th title win, Celtic, slick and speedy, kept up their early pressure.
Skipper Scott Brown headed a David Turnbull corner over the bar from six yards before Siegrist blocked an effort from Hoops left-back Diego Laxalt.
The Tayside outfit threatened only sporadically.
Celtic keeper Scott Bain clutched a lobbed shot from Ian Harkes and easily saved another long distance effort from the midfielder but in between Siegrist was again called into action to tip a drive from Celtic striker Odsonne Edouard over the bar.
Further efforts from Edouard and Callum McGregor followed before McNulty latched on to a Shankland pass but missed the target with only Bain to beat.
In the 34th minute Laxalt did the same, set up by Elyounoussi but slashing his drive wide and then Siegrist pushed a Turnbull drive wide.
Celtic also began the second half on the front foot and from another Turnbull corner, Siegrist blocked with his knees Stephen Welsh’s powerful close range header and the home side survived yet again.
The United keeper made saves from Ryan Christie and Elyounoussi before the game was held up momentarily around the 55th minute after flares were thrown on to the edge of the pitch from outside the stadium.
In a rare United attack with Celtic stretched at the back, McNulty’s 20-yard shot was pushed behind by Bain but normal service soon resumed with Elyounoussi missing a great chance with his head from a Christie cross before screwing a drive wide of the far post.
Forrest replaced Brown and Leigh Griffiths came on for Elyounoussi but in the end Celtic were ragged and desperate, as they failed to stop their crown slipping off.
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