Football: Rangers spoil Cadete's arrival

Scottish round-up
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The Independent Online
Scottish round-up


In one of football's frequent twists of fate, Rangers increased their lead over Celtic on the very weekend their rivals completed the signing of the man they hope can help them wrest the league title from Ibrox.

Jorge Cadete is a Celtic player some four weeks after he was paraded before the supporters in the false assumption that he was a free agent. It has taken that time to unravel the red tape and for Cadete to buy out his contract from Sporting Lisbon. Even so, the move continues to be beset by problems, with international clearance failing to arrive at the Scottish Football Association in time for Cadete to be registered to play against Rangers in the Tennents Scottish Cup semi-final.

Coincidentally it was Erik Bo Andersen, Rangers' new striker, who ensured they would collect full points against a stuffy Falkirk side at Ibrox. The Dane scored twice against the bottom club, Paul Gascoigne scoring the first in a 3-2 win and, with Celtic drawing 0-0 at Motherwell with just six games remaining, it would take a brave or foolhardy person to bet against Rangers collecting an eighth successive league title. Neither manager, however, is willing to concede that the race for the title has been won.

If the battle at the top appears to be reaching a conclusion, those clubs in the relegation zone continue to fight for their lives. Partick Thistle, without a recognised striker in their ranks, conjured up the performance of their season to hammer Hearts 5-2 at Tynecastle, with Andy Lyons scoring twice. Thistle, second from bottom, are six points clear of Falkirk and three behind Motherwell,who earned a vital point against Celtic.