Noel Whelan claims the pressure got to the Rangers players this season after Celtic were officially crowned champions of the Scottish Premiership.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, the former Aberdeen and Leeds forward suggested a lack of experience was to blame for a dip in league form after the winter break.

Today the SPFL announced that the Scottish Premiership would be curtailed after clubs unanimous agreed the season could not be completed.

The top-flight follows Scotland’s lower leagues which ended after a controversial vote last month.

The governing body used a points-per-game basis to crown Celtic champions and relegate Hearts.

When asked by Football Insider how the news will have been received at Ibrox, Whelan said: “It is a learning curve. Steven will have found out a lot about his players.

“They were in the driving seat before the winter break and when they came back it all went downhill.

“It was frustrating for Gerrard because they were great in Europe but terrible in the league and he will realise that they need to improve their squad ahead of next season. 

“They will be competing on all fronts next year and need to be able to handle the pressure.

“Celtic have that know-how. They have been there for a number of years now.

“This was the second year in a long time that Rangers were in Europe and competing for the league and the pressure got to the players.”

The Gers will be disappointed to have finished runners up to their Old Firm rivals having gone into the winter break with their title hopes in their own hands.

SPFL chairman Murdoch MacLennan said: “Scottish Government restrictions and deep concerns for both player and spectator safety left the SPFL with no realistic option but to call the Ladbrokes Premiership now.”

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