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Monday 16th May 2016

Weekend in numbers

@splstats looks at some of the numbers behind the weekend games, with the focus on Celtic, Falkirk, Ayr United, Queen’s Park and Edinburgh City.

@splstats looks at some of the numbers behind the weekend games, with the focus on Celtic, Falkirk, Ayr United, Queen’s Park and Edinburgh City.

7 Celtic celebrated their Ladbrokes Premiership trophy day in style by beating Motherwell 7-0 at Parkhead. Ronny Deila’s side recorded a seven-goal victory in the league for the second time this season – Well’s Lanarkshire rivals Hamilton Accies were beaten 8-1 at Celtic Park back in January. Amazingly, the Bhoys had seven different goalscorers in Sunday’s rout, the first time this has happened in a top-flight match in over 50 years. Motherwell were the victims on that occasion too – Kilmarnock defeated them 7-1 at Rugby Park in October 1962, with Jim Richmond, Pat O’Connor, Hugh Brown, Joe Mason, Andy Kerr, Bertie Black and Brian McIlroy all on target. Celtic’s seventh goal was scored by 16 year-old Jack Aitchison, who became their youngest ever player, and also the first player born in the 2000s to play in the top flight of Scottish football.

90 Falkirk clinched their place in the Ladbrokes Premiership play-off final after a thrilling 3-2 victory over Hibernian on Friday night. Bob McHugh was the Bairns’ hero, netting a dramatic injury-time winner to set up a two-legged clash with Kilmarnock. McHugh has scored five goals in his last six matches - four were equalisers and the other a winner. Four came in the 80th minute or later, with the other coming in the 70th minute. The striker has scored 10 goals this season, and nine have been in the last half hour, including four in the 90th minute or later.

3 Ayr United defeated Stranraer on penalties to secure promotion to the Ladbrokes Championship for the first time since 2011/12. The Honest Men have now won the Championship play-offs on three separate occasions – more than any other club. Depending on the outcome of the Premiership play-off final, Ayr may be in the same league as local rivals Kilmarnock for the first time since 1992/93. Sunday’s victory continued United’s impressive record in penalty shoot-outs – they have been involved in nine competitive shoot-outs and have lost just two of them. Their 78% success rate is better than any other club in the SPFL.

6 Queen’s Park secured a long-awaited promotion to Ladbrokes League 1 after defeating Clyde 3-2 on aggregate in the play-off final. The Spiders were relegated in 2008/09, and had reached the promotion play-offs in five of the last six seasons without success. Next year will be just the fourth season in the third tier for Queen’s Park since league reconstruction in 1994 – they have never previously managed to finish higher than eighth.

1 Edinburgh City defeated East Stirlingshire 1-0 at Ochilview to become the first team to be promoted into the SPFL via the play-offs. The Lowland League champions will take the Shire’s place in Ladbrokes League 2 next season, meaning that Edinburgh has three clubs in the national leagues for the first time since Meadowbank Thistle moved to Livingston back in 1995. It will not be the first time the Edinburgh City name has appeared in Scottish League football – the previous incarnation of the club spent eight seasons in the second tier back in the 1930s with little success. The current club had two unsuccessful applications for vacancies in the SFL in the 2000s, but have now earned their place by doing the business on the park.