St Johnstone 0-4 Rangers

By Andy CampbellBBC Sport Scotland

Rangers ended an eventful season with a comfortable victory over St Johnstone.

With news of breaking hours before kick-off, Lee McCulloch's superb strike put the visitors ahead.

Sone Aluko fired Rangers' second 11 minutes after the break and tapped home the third from Alejandro Bedoya's pass.

Aluko completed his hat-trick with a powerful shot and Saints now require Hearts to win the Scottish Cup in order to qualify for the Europa League.

Steve Lomas's side finish sixth - two points behind Hearts, who take on Hibernian in next weekend's Hampden showpiece.

The hosts were prominent early on and Cillian Sheridan's header from Liam Craig's corner was blocked on the line by goalkeeper Allan McGregor.

At the other end, McCulloch's nodded effort called Saints keeper Alan Mannus into action.

Bedoya then blazed over the St Johnstone bar after doing well to work the space for a shot.

Sandy Jardine, Charles Green
Prospective Rangers owner Green (right) watched the match with club ambassador Sandy Jardine

But the visitors were in front by the 23rd minute as Ross Perry's pass was flicked on by Maurice Edu to McCulloch on the run and the stand-in captain swept the ball past Mannus on the half-volley.

McCulloch appealed unsuccessfully for a penalty either side of half-time, the veteran claiming a foul and then a handball against Fraser Wright.

Francisco Sandaza headed over the Rangers crossbar from point-blank range as Saints threatened at a corner.

Craig did enough to put Kyle Bartley off after the defender threw himself at Aluko's delivery, but it was not long before Rangers found the net again.

Edu put Aluko one-on-one with Mannus and the former Aberdeen forward finished well to the goalkeeper's left.

And Aluko got his second after Steven Whittaker and Bedoya picked apart the St Johnstone defence to set the Nigeria international up for a tap-in.

Sandaza found the net with a close-range effort of his own but the Spaniard's celebrations were cut short by the offside flag.

Lee Wallace's deliveries had caused St Johnstone problems all afternoon and another cross from the full-back led to Aluko's third, the 23-year-old getting the break of the ball and crashing a shot into the top corner.

Aluko took the acclaim of the visiting fans as he left the field to be replaced by debutant Barry McKay, who almost sneaked in for a scoring chance in a late Rangers attack.

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