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Sports Mole's Scottish Premiership Team of the Season - McGregor, Davis, Nisbet

Sports Mole selects its Scottish Premiership Team of the Season for the 2020-21 campaign, including Allan McGregor, Steven Davis, and Kevin Nisbet.

In a Scottish Premiership season like no other, the 2020-21 campaign was dominated by an invincible Rangers side who claimed their first top-flight title in 10 years, cruising 25 points clear of their bitter rivals Celtic and ending their nine-year supremacy at the summit.

An impressive season for Hibernian helped them finish third and qualify for Europe, and they will be joined by St Johnstone, who not only claimed fifth place in the league but also secured a historic double, winning both the League Cup and Scottish Cup.

At the other end of the table, Dundee United survived comfortably in their first season back in the top-flight, while Hamilton Academical were demoted after seven years in the division, along with Kilmarnock, who were beaten by Dundee in the relegation playoff final.

Here, Sports Mole picks its Scottish Premiership Team of the Season and few will be surprised to see several Gers players feature throughout, with some honourable mentions along the way.

Goalkeeper: Allan McGregor

Rangers' Allan McGregor applauds as he celebrates winning the Scottish Premiership on May 15, 2021© Reuters

At the age of 39, McGregor has proved this season that he still has the desire and quality to perform at the highest level in Scottish football.

The Rangers stopper has played a pivotal role in their first title-winning season since 2011, keeping 17 clean sheets in the top flight, and his efforts were rewarded with the SPFL Premiership Player of the Year award.

Honourable mentions: Joe Lewis (Aberdeen), Benjamin Siegrist (Dundee United)

Right-back: James Tavernier

Rangers' James Tavernier poses with the trophy as he celebrates winning the Scottish Premiership on May 15, 2021© Reuters

For Tavernier to have such an influence in the final third as a right-back is remarkable. The Gers skipper ended the campaign as the club's top goalscorer, recording 19 goals as well as 12 assists across all competitions.

The 29-year-old has been criticised in the past for playing in such an advanced role, leaving the defence exposed. However, the support from midfield areas this season has allowed full-backs Tavernier and Borna Barisic to thrive going forward.

Tavernier has led from the front as captain and shown how important he is to Steven Gerrard's Rangers side.

Honourable mentions: Shaun Rooney (St Johnstone), Stephen O'Donnell (Motherwell)

Centre-backs: Connor Goldson, Filip Helander

Rangers defender Connor Goldson celebrates scoring against Celtic in the Scottish Premiership on October 17, 2020© Reuters

One of the key reasons for Rangers being so successful this year has been their strength in defence and both Connor Goldson and Filip Helander were solid performers at the heart of it. The Gers conceded just 13 goals in 38 Premiership matches, with only four at Ibrox.

Goldson – a real model of consistency and reliability – did not miss a single minute of their invincible league campaign and completed more than 5000 minutes in all competitions. The commanding centre-back has taken his game to another level and is one of the club's most improved players in the last year.

Helander, meanwhile, is yet to lose a single league game for the Gers since he arrived in July 2019. The towering Swedish international may lack pace, but has an astute positional sense and the ability to read danger, putting himself in the right place at the right time.

Honourable mentions: Kristoffer Ajer (Celtic), Jon Guthrie (Livingston), Paul Hanlon (Hibernian), Jason Kerr (St Johnstone), Ash Taylor (Aberdeen)

Left-back: Borna Barisic

Rangers Borna Barisic pictured in February 2021© Reuters

Barisic has excelled for Rangers at left-back this campaign, creating 65 goalscoring chances and recording 14 assists across all competitions.

The Croatian is not only a strong defender, but he is also an exceptional crosser of the ball and his willingness to get forward on the left-flank allowed Ryan Kent to drift into central areas and cause problems in the final third.

Like Tavernier, Barisic has been an important cog in Gerrard's machine with both full-backs complementing each other so well, creating a plethora of chances from wide areas.

Honourable mentions: Josh Doig (Hibernian), Scott Tanser (St Johnstone)

Central midfield: Steven Davis, Glen Kamara

Rangers midfielder Steven Davis celebrates scoring against Celtic on April 18, 2021© Reuters

Rangers dominated matches from midfield throughout this campaign and that was largely thanks to both Steven Davis and Glen Kamara.

For Davis to have played 49 times across all competitions and deliver consistently at the age of 36 just shows how phenomenal a professional he is. A calming influence in the Rangers midfield who made the team tick, he dictated play from deep areas but was also not shy to break into the final third.

One of the league's best central midfielders has be partnered with another talented individual in Finland's Kamara. The midfielder has quickly become a fans' favourite at Rangers and deserves all the plaudits that come his way.

Kamara was a bargain £50,000 signing in January 2019 and has excelled for the Gers alongside the likes of Davis this campaign. The 25-year-old is an intelligent all-round midfielder who is very comfortable on the ball and is sure to improve further in years to come.

Honourable mentions: Joe Aribo (Rangers), Jaime McGrath (St Mirren), Lewis Ferguson (Aberdeen), Joe Newell (Hibernian), David Turnbull (Celtic)

Right-wing: Martin Boyle

Hibernian's Martin Boyle pictured in October 2020© Reuters

Many players have excelled for Hibernian this campaign but one who really stood out was Martin Boyle. The 28-year-old operating on the right-flank has given Jack Ross's team a good balance, and his pace and trickery caused problems for many teams in the division.

Contributing with 12 goals and six assists in the Premiership, Boyle had a huge impact with Hibs, who finished the campaign in third place, and he linked up well with strikers Kevin Nisbet and Christian Doidge in the final third.

Boyle has now been with the Edinburgh-based outfit for six years but this term he has become a key player, having one of his finest seasons in the green and white jersey.

Honourable mentions: Ianis Hagi (Rangers)

Left-wing: Ryan Kent

Rangers' Ryan Kent celebrates on April 11, 2021© Reuters

Ryan Kent has been one of the Premiership's standout players this season and was rightly nominated for the Player of the Year award.

As prolific as the winger has been in front of goal – scoring 10 times in the top flight – the 24-year-old has become a greater creative outlet in Gerrard's side this term; the Englishman failed to record a single assist in the top flight last season but was able to lay on 11 this term, the joint-second highest in the division.

Kent's electric pace and ability to breeze past players make him a joy to watch and also very difficult for opposing defenders to stop.

Honourable mentions: Mohamed Elyounoussi (Celtic)

Strikers: Odsonne Edouard, Kevin Nisbet

Odsonne Edouard in action for Celtic on December 20, 2020© Reuters

Odsonne Edouard ended the season as the Premiership's top goalscorer with 18 strikes to his name, claiming his second successive Golden Boot.

You could argue that the Frenchman has not had his best season in a Celtic shirt, but there is no doubting his quality in front of goal. The skilful forward is brilliant in tight spaces and is able to use either foot to dispatch the chances that come his way. At 23 years of age, the Hoops may struggle to hold onto their star man this summer.

Meanwhile, Kevin Nisbet quickly adapted to life in the top flight after joining Hibs from Dunfermline last summer. His excellent form during the first half of the campaign drew interest from Birmingham City, but the Edinburgh-based outfit managed to hold onto the 23-year-old, who scored 14 league goals.

Had the striker not been left out of the side for a short spell, amid links with a move to Birmingham, then he could have ended the campaign as the league's top goalscorer. Nisbet has proven he is a natural finisher that possesses great pace and if he stays at Hibs beyond this summer, then he is sure to be amongst the leading goalscorers next term.

Honourable mentions: Alfredo Morelos (Rangers), Kemar Roofe (Rangers), Christian Doidge (Hibernian), Devante Cole (Motherwell)


Scottish Premiership TOTS 2020-21

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