There were local rivalries settled all over the country on Saturday, as the Premiership played out its final games before a three-week winter break. There were massive victories this weekend, but with that comes crushing defeats for other sides in Scotland’s top flight and beyond.
Here are five things we learned from the weekend’s games.
Drama on Derby Day
With nine derbies across Scotland’s four professional leagues, there was always going to be drama, and that certainly the case on Saturday. Hearts just about edged Hibs, Motherwell came from behind to claim bragging rights in the Lanarkshire derby, whilst St Johnstone easily brushed aside their Tayside rivals Dundee at Dens Park.
Across the lower leagues, there was handbags in Dingwall but Ross County still triumphed over Inverness. Brian Graham and Shaun Rooney’s scrap in the dying minutes had both men sent off.
Elsewhere there were victories for Dunfermline, Forfar, and Peterhead in their respective derby matches. East Fife secured back to back victories over Raith Rovers, whilst Montrose and Arbroath played out a 1-1 draw at Links Park. Derby day didn’t hold back any punches.
Dundee need a clear-out
Dundee have began their January clear-out, but the Dee really need new bodies in the door. They were toothless once again on Saturday, being easily beaten by St Johnstone.
It’s a performance Dundee fans have seen time and time again, with the players on show not looking interested. With loanees Calvin Miller and Andy Boyle sent back to their parent clubs and Adil Nabi released, it gives McIntyre the ability to overhaul his deflated Dundee squad.
Amazing Aldred, but striker worries deepen
Tom Aldred was the Motherwell hero against Hamilton, netting two fine strikes over the Well’s bitter rivals.
It’s possibly more worrying though, that Aldred’s double means he has now scored more than strikers Ryan Bowman, Curtis Main and Connor Sammon in the league this season.
With Ross McCormack linked to the Fir Park side, the Steelmen would massively boost their survival chances with a forward like the Aston Villa man.
Kilmarnock win the 2018 points league
Killie have gathered the most point of any side in the Premiership in 2018 after victory over St Mirren. This is the highlight of a very successful year under Steve Clarke.
Another cutting-edge performance on Saturday brushed the Buddies aside with ease. It’s testament to Clarke that they have reached this milestone. For Killie fans, it’s hard to think about where the Rugby Park side would be without Clarke.
The Championship takes the spotlight
With the Premiership now on it’s break, the Championship will step up and become the league to watch over the next three weeks. Ross County gained a three point lead over Ayr on Saturday, after the Ayrshire side drew with Queen of the South at Palmerston.
At the bottom, Partick and Falkirk are becoming stranded in the relegation spots. It’s a massive fall from grace for these once Premiership stalwarts.
It’s set up to be an exciting period in the Championship calendar. Everybody involved in Scottish football should be interested.