Celtic honour McNeill with eighth straight Scottish title

Glasgow (AFP) –


Celtic secured an eighth successive Scottish Premiership title on Saturday with a 3-0 win at Aberdeen that put them two-thirds of the way towards an unprecedented third consecutive domestic treble.

Saturday's title triumph came the day after former Celtic captain and manager Billy McNeill's funeral in Glasgow, and both he and fellow Lisbon Lion Stevie Chalmers, who also died recently, were hailed with a minute's applause before the match.

"Things just felt right this week, we kept calm with all the emotions with Billy funeral," said Celtic's interim manager Neil Lennon.

The former Hoops midfielder returned for a second spell as boss this season following Brendan Rodgers' shock decision to quit and join English Premier League side Leicester.

"It's been really tough, toughest piece of management I've had to do, as it has been difficult coming in to the club but the players helped me and I like to think I've helped them. It's been really special," added Lennon.

Celtic, who only needed only to avoid defeat at Pittodrie to be sure of retaining their crown, survived scares when Aberdeen's James Wilson twice hit the woodwork with the match was still scoreless.

But the away side took the lead five minutes before half-time when Mikael Lustig headed in a cross from Callum McGregor, and Jozo Simunovic doubled their lead with header from McGregor's corner six minutes after the break.

French striker Odsonne Edouard, played in by Tom Rogic, completed the scoring two minutes from time with his 21st goal of the season.

Victory gave Celtic an unassailable 12-point lead over second-placed Rangers, their arch Glasgow rivals.

And with the Scottish League Cup already won, Celtic -- still unbeaten under interim manager Neil Lennon -- now just need to beat Hearts in the Scottish Cup final later this month to complete the historic 'treble treble'.