Neil Lennon claims Rangers will be strong title contenders next season

Neil Lennon arrives early at Hampden Park before the Betfred Cup Semi-Final between Hibernian and Celtic at Hampden Park on October 21, 2017 in Glasgow, Scotland.

Hibernian are closing in on Rangers and Aberdeen in the Scottish Premiership table.

James Tavernier of Rangers celebrates after he scores a penalty during the Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership match between Rangers and Aberdeen at Ibrox Stadium on January 24, 2018 in Glasgow,...

Hibernian became the third team in Scotland to defeat Celtic this season, with their 2-1 win over Brendan Rodgers' men on Saturday pushing them closer to second-placed Rangers and third-placed Aberdeen.

Neil Lennon's side are only three points behind the duo heading into the last four games of the campaign.

While pipping both teams to the runners-up spot is still possible for Hibs, their manager believes it is a very big ask, and he has claimed that Rangers will be a much stronger team next term.

“If we finish second, then how can we top that? If — and it’s still a big if," Lennon said concerning Hibs' chances, as reported by the Scottish Sun.

Jason Cummings of Rangers celebrates after scoring his team's first goal during the Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership match between Rangers and Hearts at Ibrox Stadium on April 22, 2018 in...

“I do think Rangers will be strong next year because they have a bit of clout behind them and they may or may not bring in a new manager.

“So this may be as good as it gets for us in the short-term anyway; but we will have to see.”

Rangers will go back to the drawing board at the end of the campaign in preparations for next season and, should they fail to finish directly behind Celtic this term, manager Graeme Murty could be relieved of his duties.

Winning a first Scottish Premiership title since 2011 remains top priority for the Ibrox club and, having failed to finish as best of the rest last term upon their return to the top flight, a lot of work is needed if Rangers are to mount a strong title challenge next term and going forward.

Alfredo Morelos of Rangers is challenged by Dedryck Boyata of Celtic during the Scottish Cup Semi Final match between Rangers and Celtic at Hampden Park on April 15, 2018 in Glasgow,...

The recent signs are promising, though, with Rangers a better side under Murty, even though consistency remains an issue.

Should they get it right in the summer transfer window, Rangers can surely give Celtic a run for their money next season, but it remains to be seen if the team can get lucky making shrewd and quality signings like Alfredo Morelos.

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