2004–05 Scottish Premier League
The 2004–05 Scottish Premier League was won by Rangers, who claimed the title on the final day of the season by a single point from Celtic, who had gone into the final fixtures leading and were still ahead in the closing minutes of their last game against Motherwell until they conceded two goals (both scored by striker Scott McDonald), costing them the title with Rangers winning their match against Hibernian in Edinburgh. The dramatic events became known in popular culture as 'Helicopter Sunday' due to the aircraft ceremonially delivering the championship trophy changing direction in mid-flight as the identity of its winners altered suddenly.
|Dates||6 August 2004 – 21 May 2005|
|Goals scored||595 (2.61 per match)|
|Top goalscorer||John Hartson (25)|
|Biggest home win||Celtic 6–0 Dunfermline (12 March)|
|Biggest away win||Livingston 0–4 Celtic (13 April)|
As league champions, Rangers qualified for the UEFA Champions League, with runners-up Celtic also qualifying. Third-placed Hibernian qualified for the UEFA Cup, as did Dundee United, who took the Scottish Cup place despite losing the final to Celtic.
Promotion and relegation from 2003–04Edit
Stadia and locationsEdit
|Pittodrie Stadium||Celtic Park||Dens Park||Tannadice Park|
|Capacity: 20,866||Capacity: 60,411||Capacity: 11,506||Capacity: 14,223|
|Dunfermline Athletic||Heart of Midlothian|
|East End Park||Tynecastle Park|
|Capacity: 12,509||Capacity: 17,420|
|Hibernian||Inverness Caledonian Thistle|
|Easter Road||Caledonian Stadium|
|Capacity: 16,531||Capacity: 7,500|
|Rugby Park||Almondvale Stadium||Fir Park||Ibrox Stadium|
|Capacity: 17,889||Capacity: 10,016||Capacity: 13,677||Capacity: 50,817|
|Team||Outgoing manager||Date of vacancy||Manner of departure||Position in table||Incoming manager||Date of appointment|
|Aberdeen||Steve Paterson||24 May 2004||Sacked||Pre-season||Jimmy Calderwood||28 May 2004|
|Dunfermline Athletic||Jimmy Calderwood||28 May 2004||Signed by Aberdeen||David Hay||17 June 2004|
|Livingston||David Hay||1 June 2004||Contract Expired||Allan Preston||4 June 2004|
|Heart of Midlothian||Craig Levein||29 October 2004||Signed by Leicester City||6th||John Robertson||3 November 2004|
|Inverness Caledonian Thistle||John Robertson||3 November 2004||Signed by Heart of Midlothian||9th||Craig Brewster||25 November 2004|
|Livingston||Allan Preston||25 November 2004||Sacked||12th||Richard Gough||30 November 2004|
|Dundee United||Ian McCall||14 March 2005||Sacked||12th||Gordon Chisholm||14 March 2005 (interim)|
14 May 2005 (permanent)
|Dunfermline Athletic||David Hay||3 May 2005||Sacked||12th||Jim Leishman||3 May 2005|
|Heart of Midlothian||John Robertson||9 May 2005||Sacked||5th|| Steven Pressley
John McGlynn (joint caretakers)
|11 May 2005|
|Pos||Team||Pld||W||D||L||GF||GA||GD||Pts||Qualification or relegation[a]|
|1||Rangers||38||29||6||3||78||22||+56||93||Qualification for the Champions League third qualifying round|
|2||Celtic||38||30||2||6||85||35||+50||92||Qualification for the Champions League second qualifying round|
|3||Hibernian||38||18||7||13||64||57||+7||61||Qualification for the UEFA Cup first round|
|5||Heart of Midlothian||38||13||11||14||43||41||+2||50|
|8||Inverness Caledonian Thistle||38||11||11||16||41||47||−6||44|
|9||Dundee United||38||8||12||18||41||59||−18||36||Qualification for the UEFA Cup second qualifying round[b]|
|12||Dundee||38||8||9||21||37||71||−34||33||Relegation to the Scottish First Division|
Rules for classification: 1) Points; 2) Goal difference; 3) Goals scored
- Teams played each other three times (33 matches), before the league split into two groups (the top six and the bottom six) for the last five matches.
- As Celtic, the 2004–05 Scottish Cup winners, qualified for the UEFA Champions League via their league position, the place in the UEFA Cup was passed onto Dundee United, the cup runners-up.
Source: SPL official website
The average attendances for SPL clubs during the 2004–05 season are shown below:
Source: SPL official website
|August||Jimmy Calderwood (Aberdeen)||Alan Thompson (Celtic)||Alexander Diamond (Aberdeen)|
|September||Terry Butcher (Motherwell)||Scott McDonald (Motherwell)||Derek Riordan (Hibernian)|
|October||John Robertson (Inverness CT)||Fernando Ricksen (Rangers)||Steven Fletcher (Hibernian)|
|November||Alex McLeish (Rangers)||Nacho Novo (Rangers)||Derek Riordan (Hibernian)|
|December||Tony Mowbray (Hibernian)||Aiden McGeady (Celtic)||Derek Riordan (Hibernian)|
|January||Martin O'Neill (Celtic)||Chris Sutton (Celtic)||Derek Riordan (Hibernian)|
|February||Alex McLeish (Rangers)||Dado Pršo (Rangers)||Lee Miller (Hearts)|
|March||Craig Brewster (Inverness CT)||Craig Bellamy (Celtic)||Aiden McGeady (Celtic)|
|April||Gordon Chisholm (Dundee United)||Burton O'Brien (Livingston)||Lee Miller (Hearts)|
|May||Tony Mowbray (Hibernian)||Dado Pršo (Rangers)||Derek Riordan (Hibernian)|
- Motherwell 2-1 Celtic, BBC Sport, 22 May 2005
- Hibernian 0-1 Rangers, BBC Sport, 21 May 2005
- Helicopter Sunday: Rangers' last-gasp triumph, 15 years on, BBC Sport, 21 May 2020
- "Aberdeen Football Club". Scottish Professional Football League. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
- "Celtic Football Club". Scottish Professional Football League. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
- "Dundee Football Club". Scottish Professional Football League. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
- "Dundee United Football Club". Scottish Professional Football League. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
- "Dunfermline Athletic Football Club". Scottish Professional Football League. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
- "Heart of Midlothian Football Club". Scottish Professional Football League. Archived from the original on 2013-10-22. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
- Inverness played their first fourteen home fixtures at Pittodrie Stadium, while the Caledonian Stadium was expanded.
- "Hibernian Football Club". Scottish Professional Football League. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
- "Inverness Caledonian Thistle Football Club". Scottish Professional Football League. Retrieved 11 November 2013.[permanent dead link]
- "Kilmarnock Football Club". Scottish Professional Football League. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
- "Livingston Football Club". Scottish Professional Football League. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
- "Motherwell Football Club". Scottish Professional Football League. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
- "Rangers Football Club". Scottish Professional Football League. Retrieved 4 November 2015. Cite journal requires