Scottish Premiership's transfer winners and losers, with Steven Thompson

Rangers manager Steven Gerrard and new signing Umar Sadiq
Rangers' Steven Gerrard (left) has been particularly active in the transfer market

The League Cup acted as the test bed for most, the Europa League was a higher-profile blooding for the rest - now the start of the Scottish Premiership season beckons for the top flight's summer recruits.

While Cristiano Ronaldo's £99m transfer from Real Madrid to Juventus dwarfs the amount spent this close season throughout the whole of Scottish football, Premiership clubs have been busy trying to unearth some hidden gems from less renowned corners of the worldwide transfer market.

But which manager has been the Eric Knowles in the hunt for bargains and who has been the the Derek 'Del Boy' Trotter?

Former Scotland striker Steven Thompson has been particularly impressed with Rangers' acquisitions under new manager Steven Gerrard.

Here, he predicts the biggest hits and misses from each of the 12 top-flight clubs before Saturday's big kick-off.

Aberdeen

Aberdeen's Mikey Devlin and Scott McKenna
Mikey Devlin (left) has only just made his Aberdeen debut following injury

Key signing: Michael Devlin

Steven Thompson: "I have been very impressed with young midfielder Lewis Ferguson after his move from Hamilton. But a player they signed in January from Accies, Mikey Devlin, only made his debut the other night after recovering from injury and could be their most important fresh face this season. It will be brilliant to watch how his partnership with Scott McKenna unfolds in central defence."

Key departure: Adam Rooney

ST: "Adam Rooney, who has been Aberdeen's top scorer for four or five seasons, has signed for Salford City and it is going to be very difficult to find a striker to guarantee the same number of goals. Big things were expected of Stevie May last year, but he didn't find the net often enough, while Sam Cosgrove is not a renowned goalscorer."

Celtic

Celtic's Odsonne Edouard and Brendan Rodgers celebrate
Odsonne Edouard is already pleasing Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers this season

Key signing: Odsonne Edouard

ST: Celtic's squad was already strong enough to win the league this coming season and the only additions to their squad are two guys who were on loan last season - Odsonne Edouard and goalkeeper Scott Bain. They've spent a lot of money making Edouard their record signing from Paris St-Germain and the two goals the French striker scored against Rosenborg suggest it is a wise investment. He could end up being worth a lot more money.

Key departure: Stuart Armstrong

ST: Stuart Armstrong was sold to Southampton for £7m and they've yet to replace the Scotland midfielder. If Celtic are to bring anyone in, they will want someone capable of playing Champions League football as they already have a lot of other midfielders. They've bid for Hibs' John McGinn, but I don't think he would necessarily go straight into the team because Olivier Ntcham and Scott Brown are playing particularly well.

Dundee

Dundee's Jean Alassane Mendy (right) celebrates scoring
Jean Alassane Mendy (right) has already scored twice for Dundee

Key addition: Jean Alassane Mendy

ST: Dundee struggled more than any other team last season to convert the chances they created and four strikers have departed - A-Jay Leitch-Smith and Simon Murray returned to their parent clubs, while Faissal El Bakhtaoui has been loaned to Dunfermline Athletic and Marcus Haber to Falkirk. Jean Alassane Mendy, previously of Lokeren in Belgium, has already found the net twice in the League Cup, but those were the Norwegian's first since September and I still think they need an out-and-out scorer.

Key departure: Mark O'Hara

ST: Mark O'Hara was brilliant for Dundee last season, scoring six goals and driving the team forward from midfield. But the 22-year-old has joined Peterborough United and we will have to wait to see if the three midfield additions, none of whom have been playing top-flight football, can adequately replace him.

Hamilton Academical

Ziggy Gordon in action for Hamilton
Ziggy Gordon has started his second spell with Hamilton

Key signing: Ziggy Gordon

ST: When Ziggy Gordon was at Hamilton previously, he was one of their stand-out players. He has returned to Scotland after a spell in Poland and his experience could be vital for them in defence.

Key departure: David Templeton

ST: Like most seasons, there has been a big turnover of players and the biggest problem this summer is that they have lost a lot of creativity. Ali Crawford was a goalscoring and creative midfielder, while their best player last season was David Templeton - and Lewis Ferguson has left as well. The amount of goals Templeton scored or created in the second half of the season is going to be hard to replace.

Heart of Midlothian

Steven Naismith celebrates scoring for Hearts
Steven Naismith is in his second loan spell with Hearts from Norwich

Key signing: Steven Naismith

ST: Getting Steven Naismith back on loan from Norwich City is going to be a big signing for them because of his experience and quality. With Steven MacLean having also arrived from St Johnstone, Hearts have really good options in forward areas.

Key departure: Jon McLaughlin

ST: Losing Jon McLaughlin to Sunderland is going to be a big miss for Hearts as he was one of the stand-out goalkeepers in the league last season. If you look at the clean sheets they got last season, he was pivotal to that and it's a position where they need to make sure they've got the right man in.

Hibernian

Florian Kamberi celebrates a goal for Hibs
Florian Kamberi has been signed permanently from Grasshopper Zurich

Key signing: Florian Kamberi

ST: Florian Kamberi is already a cult hero with the supporters after his spell on loan from Grasshopper Zurich and securing the striker on a permanent basis is certainly the signing of the summer for Neil Lennon.

Key departure: Dylan McGeouch

ST: Hibs' midfield was one of the strongest in Scotland last season, but they have lost Dylan McGeouch just as he received his first Scotland call-up, while Scott Allan has returned to Celtic after his loan spell. They have brought in an old team-mate of mine, Stevie Mallan from Barnsley, and he is off to a flyer, scoring goals and being creative. He will be a good replacement, but they also need to hang on to John McGinn despite Celtic's interest.

Kilmarnock

Jordan Jones (left) celebrates with Kilmarnock
Jordan Jones (left) has been linked with a move away from Rugby Park

Key signing: Jordan Jones

ST: I know Jordan Jones isn't a new signing, but manager Steve Clarke hasn't made many moves during the summer - maybe he thinks they have a strong enough squad and do not need to change much. But hanging on to the speedy winger despite him being linked with other clubs is probably their best bit of business.

Key departure: Youssouf Mulumbu

ST: Youssouf Mulumbu's arrival at Rugby Park in December coincided with improved form that took Killie clear of relegation and propelled them into the top six. The former West Bromwich Albion midfielder's commanding displays ensured he has interest from clubs with bigger budgets and he will be a big miss for the Ayrshire side.

Livingston

Kenny Miller in action for Livingston
Golden oldie Kenny Miller is continuing playing while being Livingston manager

Key signing: Kenny Miller

ST: Kenny Miller deciding to continue playing after taking over as manager after leaving Rangers is the signing of the summer for Livingston. Although he is now 38, the former Scotland striker could still do a job for any club in the Premiership. In partnership with 35-year-old Lee Miller, they certainly have plenty of experience now up front, but can he combine the two things - managing and playing?

Key departure: Neil Alexander

ST: Having helped Livingston win promotion, Neil Alexander has decided to retire at the age of 40 to become a coach at Dundee United. Replacing the former Scotland squad goalkeeper will be a big void to fill, but Liam Kelly is more than capable of stepping in after leaving Rangers.

Motherwell

Conor Sammon (left) celebrates for Motherwell
Conor Sammon (left) has already hit the goal trail with Motherwell

Key signing: Conor Sammon

ST: On-loan Hearts striker Conor Sammon suits Motherwell's style. If they are going to be playing as direct as they were last season and have a front two of Sammon and Curtis Main, I wouldn't like to play against that as a centre-half. That is two very powerful strikers.

Key departure: None

ST: I don't think Motherwell have lost anyone significant and they will do well to retain Chris Cadden now that the 21-year-old has earned his first Scotland caps and I expect the midfielder to now go from strength to strength.

Rangers

Connor Goldson (left) celebrates with Rangers
Connor Goldson (left) has joined Rangers from Brighton

Key signing: Connor Goldson

ST: It is obvious that manager Steven Gerrard has made sorting out the defence he inherited his priority and the early signs are good. They haven't conceded a goal during pre-season. Connor Goldson seems to have been an immense signing from Brighton and, so far, the centre-half has looked phenomenal.

Key departure: None

ST: As with Motherwell, all of Rangers' summer departures were on the periphery of the team last season. The squad assembled by Gerrard looks to be much stronger and there are virtually two good players for every position.

St Johnstone

Tony Watt celebrates with St Johnstone
Tony Watt is back in Scotland with St Johnstone after a spell in Belgium

Key signing: Tony Watt

ST: St Johnstone missed having an out-and-out goalscorer last season - somebody who was going to find the net regularly. Tony Watt only managed a handful of starts for Leuven in Belgium's second tier last season, but if the striker can finally fulfil the potential that earned him a solitary Scotland cap, he could be what Saints are looking for. From the point of view of his own career, he needs to make this a success.

Key departure: Steven MacLean

ST: Steven MacLean only found the net nine times last season, but the veteran forward has looked as fit as ever after his move to Hearts and has the ability to link the play incredibly well.

St Mirren

St Mirren midfielder Matty Willock
Matty Willock has switched Saints from Perth to Paisley

Key signing: Matty Willock

ST: Matty Willock showed some promise while on loan to St Johnstone last season and the 21-year-old Manchester United midfielder could blossom further under new Buddies manager Alan Stubbs.

Key departure: Lewis Morgan

ST: In addition to the departure of manager Jack Ross to Sunderland, the loss of Lewis Morgan is a major blow to the Paisley club. The 18 goals scored last season by the winger, who had been loaned back to St Mirren after his January sale to Celtic, and his overall contribution to their play will be almost impossible to replace.