Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes not expecting Celtic collapse

Celtic manager Ronny Deila and Aberdeen's Derek McInnes
News of Ronny Deila's decision to leave Celtic has not given Derek McInnes renewed hope

Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes has little hope that Celtic's managerial turmoil will let his team back in the Scottish Premiership title race.

Celtic have stretched their lead to eight points with five games remaining.

But Ronny Deila on Wednesday announced that will be standing down as Celtic manager at the end of the season.

"I said after the Hearts game that I felt the possibility of winning the league was all but beyond us," McInnes said of that 2-1 defeat.

"While it's mathematically still possible, we are not going to give it up, we are going to try and win every game and try and win the next game, which is the most important thing.

"It's only Celtic's to lose. It would need a dramatic collapse over the last five games.

"The league form has suggested that won't be the case. They have never shown that at any time over the past few seasons and I wouldn't think that would change now.

"Only time will tell whether the changes there will have an impact on results, but the players and squad there are still capable of getting results, regardless of who is in charge."

Aberdeen can put some pressure on Celtic by beating St Johnstone on Friday ahead of Celtic facing Ross County on Sunday and McInnes believes that his players do not receive the credit they deserve for doing so.

Rangers manager Mark Warburton
McInnes expects Mark Warburton's Rangers to give the Premiership "more weight" next season

"All the experts will say Rangers need to spend millions to bridge the gap," he said of the club who will be in the top-flight next season after winning the Championship.

"But, at the same time, these guys are quick to criticise Aberdeen for failing to maintain a challenge over 38 games and there is no logic in that.

"Our players deserve a lot of credit over the last two seasons to maintain a challenge of some sort to Celtic.

"The challenge for us next season, whoever is in the league, is to try to keep improving and challenging."

McInnes thinks the arrival of the Ibrox club will make even harder for his side next season.

"Rangers being in the league adds a lot of weight to the league and makes it stronger," added the former Ibrox midfielder.

"If Hibs were to join the Premiership, depending on which team goes down, you could argue that could mean a stronger league as well.

"By stronger, I mean size of club, bigger attendances, more exposure potentially.

"It can only be to the benefit of the league, although I have to say the league has still been a good product without Rangers.

"We all expect Rangers to flex their muscles and spend money.

"They are already operating on a budget three times what I'm currently operating at."

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