A case of what might have been for Rangers
Celtic's Scottish Premier League title win will be well deserved when it comes, but had they shown the spirit earlier in the match at Ibrox that their nine men provided with their late rally, they might have been breaking out the champagne already.
Yesterday, though, Rangers must have wondered what might have been, had they not lost Nikica Jelavic and had they not suffered some significant suspensions and injuries in recent times.
Mostly, though, they must wonder what might have happened had they shown some real mettle and application and not allowed themselves to squander a title-winning lead to Celtic.
Suggestions that Rangers' impoverished state will have helped propel the league flag to the east end of Glasgow can only come from apologists for the Ibrox side.
Andrew Little (centre) is congratulated by his Rangers team-mates after scoring his team's second goal at Ibrox. Photo: SNS
Neil Lennon's side were reigning in Rangers' handsome lead at the top before financial concerns started to bite at Ibrox.
The Rangers side that started at Ibrox was vastly experienced and contained a plethora of internationals.
They were good enough to win their fourth title in a row and, as they threatened to demolish a nine-man Celtic side, how they must rue their recent unfathomable collapse.
Rangers threw away a huge points advantage, and the title, to the better side over the piece and have no-one to blame but themselves.
After putting three goals past a Celtic side which had conceded only one goal in their last eight SPL games, they must be kicking themselves for their own shortcomings.
Recent form of three defeats in four SPL games appeared to prove that this Rangers side was short of the character normally associated with those in light blue.
Until Sunday, that is, when in a show of defiance they dispatched a Celtic side who never really got out of first gear until the dying stages of the game.
Generally Celtic have been more creative and forceful than Rangers and have provided craft and guile far in excess of their rivals. That was in short supply at the Ibrox showdown.
Traditionally Celtic are expected to be cavalier in attack, playing with flair and style, yet defensively they could have been welded in the Clyde shipyards, so tight have they been at the back.
Just 17 goals conceded in the league until the Ibrox game seemed testament to their defensive capabilities.
Up front they have been superior to all others and, having netted 62 goals prior to the match, more than two per game, they have been ahead of the pack in terms of threat carried.
The Cup final against Kilmarnock saw Celtic's first defeat in 27 matches: that is phenomenal form.
There has been a killer instinct about Neil Lennon's side.
In their recent 4-0 win at Dundee United they were outplayed in the first half and defeat looked a distinct possibility.
Then Robbie Neilson was red-carded and Celtic ruthlessly grabbed the advantage and took the game by the throat to capitalise.
On Sunday, something similar happened to them.
Cha Du-Ri's red card gave Rangers the advantage and at first they were merciless in using it.
The second red, for a daft tackle by Victor Wanyama in front of the referee's nose, showed a lack of discipline and left Celtic with an impossible task.
The winning mentality hammered into the side by Lennon over the last couple of seasons was bettered by a side which showed more organisation, passion and desire on the day.
Celtic, though, have the title in the bag and it is won over a season, not just one day.
With the Scottish Cup offering the prospect of a double, the Parkhead side can still enjoy a great season, but Sunday's result will have given hope to the sides remaining in the Cup that Hampden success is not impossible - as Kilmarnock proved last weekend.