2011 Scottish League Cup Final
The 2010/11 Scottish season was one of the most tense in history. It was Walter Smith v Neil Lennon, in a title race which went to the final day, and the teams met each other 7 time total, accounted for in 4 league meetings and drawing each other in both cups, with the Scottish Cup tie being replayed.
The extra intensity this rivalry took on this season was accounted for in many ways. First of all, both teams got off to a flying start wining their first 10 matches in the league until fixture 11 which was the derby, and Rangers managed to win 3-1 which gave them the advantage, in what would be a close title race.
Leading up to the final Celtic had knocked Rangers out of the Scottish Cup and triumphed 3-0 at Celtic Park in the league in the month of February. Therefore, confidence within the Parkhead camp was high as the city rivals prepared for this match.
Rangers had triumphed over Dunfermline, Kilmarnock and Motherwell to reach the final, and Celtic progressed the the ultimate stage after wins against Inverness, St Johnstone and Aberdeen.
Due to poor derby form, Rangers were commonly considered underdogs before of a Hampden Park ball was kicked and had they not protected the prize in this cup final, Walter Smith's last final as their leader, they may have also lost confidence for the title run in.