Rangers, Aberdeen, Scotland, Celtic and Hibs-Hearts: Rob Maclean's five things

Rangers caretaker manager Graeme Murty shows his frustration against Morton
Rangers caretaker Graeme Murty felt the pain of frustration in charge against Morton

Rob Maclean continues his series assessing the main talking points from the weekend's Scottish football action.

Rangers overhaul - again

The new Rangers manager has a big clearout operation on his hands despite the side under caretaker Graeme Murty progressing to the Scottish Cup quarter-finals by beating Morton.

Chairman Dave King is obviously not throwing money at a first-team squad that has quantity about it but ain't so impressive in terms of real quality.

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Scottish Cup highlights: Rangers 2-1 Morton

So one of the first jobs for Mark Warburton's replacement as gaffer will be to get rid of the players who've done nothing to improve Rangers' Championship-winning squad of last season.

He'll hope that some of their reputations are still intact outside Scotland and they can be moved back south of the border.

Getting money off the wage bill will be crucial to getting better players in.

That was meant to be what was happening this season. Now it's back to the drawing board.

Dons' second chance

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Highlights: Ross County 0-1 Aberdeen

With Rangers in chaos, Aberdeen should seize the moment to nail down another runners-up spot.

The Dons would have been second to Celtic for the last three seasons had it not been for a dodgy last-day decision against Motherwell at Pittodrie in 2014, and they should be set now to extend that sequence.

They've come through the January transfer window unscathed. Key pair Jonny Hayes and Niall McGinn are still on board.

They've won seven of their last eight matches, the odd game out being at Celtic Park.

Aberdeen, who also beat Ross County to reach the Scottish Cup quarter-finals, are level on points with Rangers but with a game in hand and a better goal difference.

Now is the time for them to kick on and prove again they're the next best thing, even if not that close, to Scotland's top team.

Strachan to go through Hoops?

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Highlights: Celtic 6-0 Inverness CT

Scotland head coach Gordon Strachan will surely cram as many Celtic players as he can into his team for next month's World Cup qualifier against Slovenia.

The domestic domination of the runaway Premiership leaders continued on Saturday with the 6-0 Scottish Cup demolition of Inverness Caledonian Thistle.

Celtic have a winning mentality that Strachan will hope can give the national team a badly-needed shot in the arm.

So who's in? Craig Gordon, Kieran Tierney, Scott Brown and James Forrest are certainties.

If he's back playing, Stuart Armstrong has to be in the squad as well. I would think Callum McGregor is knocking on the door too.

Transferring Celtic's feel-good factor into the Scotland set-up can only help.

Sun shining on Leith

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Scottish Cup highlights: Hearts 0-0 Hibernian

Hibs fans had two good reasons to be cheerful this past weekend.

A goalless draw at Tynecastle earned them an Edinburgh derby replay back at Easter Road on Wednesday week that boosts their chances of extending their trophy defence with a place in the Scottish Cup quarter-finals.

Hibs also managed to move a step nearer promotion to the Premiership. Their closest Championship challengers, Dundee United, lost 3-0 away to Falkirk on Saturday.

Neil Lennon's team remain six points better off in the race for the automatic promotion place, and they now have a game in hand on United in addition to a much superior goal difference.

Their boisterous support on Sunday made quite a noise. After three years on the second rung of the Scottish football ladder, it's time we welcomed Hibs back to the big league.

Hearts-warming story

Hearts owner Anne Budge receives a donation of £1m from Foundation of Hearts chairman Stuart Wallace
Hearts owner Anne Budge received the foundation cheque from chairman Stuart Wallace

The atmosphere in Gorgie was memorable, but it was no feast of football.

What action there was, on a crumbling playing surface, can be safely forgotten.

For me, the highlight of the day took place when, funnily enough, there were no players on the pitch.

Foundation of Hearts chairman Stuart Wallace presented the club with a cheque for £1m towards the redevelopment, already underway, of the main stand at Tynecastle.

Monthly pledges from supporters have now channelled more than £5m to Hearts owner Ann Budge in less than three years.

They're propping up their club. A heart-warming story in so many ways.

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