WELCOME to our new weekly feature, exclusive to The Scotsman website, where we give our verdict on the winners and losers of the weekend’s Scottish football action in the Premiership, Championship, League One and League Two.
Fans will have their own views, of course, and there will doubtless be many who disagree with our choices (there may even be one or two that agree!). But football is all about opinions, and after perusing the list below we would be happy to hear supporters’ own thoughts and alternatives.
In this inaugural week, Celtic and Rangers feature prominently following their Saturday wins against Dundee United and East Fife respectively. High-flying Hamilton Accies also, unsurprisingly, are rewarded for the eye-catching form with a mention in our list of winners.
Team of the week: Celtic
It has to be Neil Lennon’s side. Their last gasp winner against FC Shakhter Karagandy on Wednesday ensured Champions League group stage football and glamour games against Barcelona, AC Milan and Ajax, and another last-gasp winner over Dundee United at Tannadice brought home an important Premiership win.
Good weekend for: Lee McCulloch
The Rangers striker grabbed his first ever senior hat-trick with a treble of headers in the 5-0 League One win over East Fife.
Bad weekend for: Danny Lennon and Queen’s Park
Individually it was another match day to forget for St Mirren manager Danny Lennon after his side lost two goals at home to Partick Thistle to go down 2-1 and heap more pressure onto the Paisley boss. They have made a dismal start to the season and crashed out of the League Cup to Queen of the South in midweek. Since savouring their Hampden high against Hearts in March the Buddies have won only one match. Collectively it was a bad weekend for Queen’s Park as they lost 2-0 to Stirling Albion and Cowdenbeath defeated Dumbarton to leave the Spiders as the only side in Scotland with no points.
Manager of the week: Alex Neil
Rookie player/boss at Hamilton Accies Neil first steered his side to a Scottish League Cup win over Premiership outfit Kilmarnock and then guided his team to an impressive comeback win over Falkirk in the Championship on Saturday. The Accies have a 100 per cent league record and sit 5 points clear of the Bairns.
Premiership player of the week: Billy McKay
The Northern Irishman’s double for league leaders Inverness Caledonian Thistle saw off Hearts 2-0 and took the striker up to five goals for the season.
Premiership goal of the week: Anthony Stokes
It may not have been the most convincing foul or been taken from the right place, but Stokes’ exquisitely curled free-kick was a top drawer match-winner.
Championship player of the week: Mickael Antoine-Curier
The prodigal Hamilton Accies forward scored the goal to knock Kilmarnock out of the Scottish League Cup on his third-time-around debut. The Guadeloupe international followed that up with fine equaliser at Falkirk.
Championship goal of the week: Ali Crawford
Crawford’s postage stamp curling effort from 18 yards out won the game for Accies at the Falkirk Stadium.
League One player of the week: Lee Erwin
What a way to announce your arrival at a club. Erwin marked the start of his loan spell at Arbroath from Motherwell with both goals in the 2-1 Angus derby success over Brechin City.
League One goal of the week: Paddy Boyle
A gem of a strike from 30 yards out from Boyle of Airdrie United sent the Diamonds in front at Ayr United.
League Two player of the week: Dennis Wyness
Elgin City’s front man may be a bit long in the tooth, but the former Hearts and Inverness striker demonstrated his well-honed predatory skills to grab the only goal in his side’s 1-0 win over Clyde.
League Two Goal of the week: David Hopkirk
Annan Athletic may have lost 4-2 to Berwick Rangers in the clash of the black and golds, but however Hopkirk can look back on his pride on his 30 yard strike at Shielfield..