Celtic win Scottish title, but is their dominance harmful?
Brendan Rodgers's side target an undefeated campaign, but critics say the Premiership is now a non-competition
Celtic won their sixth consecutive Scottish Premiership on Sunday, with eight games left to play.
A 5-0 win over Hearts at Tynecastle - their 28th win in 30 games this season – saw the Bhoys amass an unassailable 25 points over second-place Aberdeen, despite there being two months left in the season. They have dropped only four points since last August.
"So overwhelming has Celtic's domestic dominance been that [manager] Brendan Rodgers was almost blushing as he celebrated afterwards with his players," says Keith Jackson of the Daily Record.
"When Rodgers looks back on this astonishingly one-sided romp to the club's sixth successive league crown, he can afford to do so with a great deal of personal satisfaction. His first year at the helm – and the total transformation of a team that crawled across the line last May – has been a textbook lesson in the power of astute management."
The Celtic boss deserves great credit as his team aim to complete the season unbeaten, says Neil Cameron of The Herald.
"It has been easy for Celtic but nobody expected it would be this easy," he adds. "That both Hearts and Rangers have had average seasons did nothing for the competition; however, the reason why the leaders are so far ahead is because they have played some genuinely fantastic football."
No side has gone unbeaten in the Scottish top flight since 1899 and the lack of competition is becoming "harmful" to the game, says Ewan Murray in The Guardian.
Celtic must ensure they perform well against the best teams in Europe next season or their victory will only serve to illustrate how poor the Scottish league has become, he adds.
"There is now a contradiction within Celtic's position: to defend Scottish football so their results are commended, while retaining clear ambition of an alternative, tougher and more lucrative scene."
Last month, James Gheerbrant of The Times raised concerns about "what happens to the soul of a country's national game when its main competition becomes a non-competition".
He added that the lopsided nature of the Premiership "perpetuates" the failings of the Scottish national side and the nation's other club teams.
A lack of competition has also raised questions about whether Celtic should test themselves in the Premier League.
Rodgers is in no doubt the Hoops could challenge the top English sides. "Yes, we could," he said yesterday. "I have absolutely no doubt about it because we've got the Celtic factor. We have 60,000 every other week."