Glasgow: Jermain Defoe’s hat-trick blasted Rangers to the top of the Scottish Premiership as their 5-0 thrashing of Hamilton took advantage of Celtic’s shock loss at Livingston.
Defoe’s goal-blitz helped Steven Gerrard’s side move into pole position for the first time this season.
Former Tottenham forward Defoe opened the scoring at Ibrox before Connor Goldson’s header and a Borna Barisic free-kick increased the lead.
It was Defoe who completed the rout with two more second-half goals as Rangers moved two points clear of champions Celtic.
Earlier on Sunday, Celtic were rocked by Livingston’s first-ever victory over the Glasgow club, as the hosts won 2-0.
It meant Neil Lennon’s side lost for the first time in the Scottish Premiership this season.
“You can’t panic but I am expecting better. I did tell them before the game that the fixture was a concern,” Lennon said.
“It’s a dangerous opponent in a dangerous environment. I knew Livi would be well up for it and they were. It is a poor result.”