Celtic’s dreams of a domestic treble are over after Kilmarnock clinched victory in the Scottish League Cup this afternoon.
A late goal from substitute Dieter Van Tornhout ended the Bhoys unbeaten run of 27 matches and earned Killie their first trophy since 1997.
It looked like it was going to be an uphill task for Kenny Shiels’ side, given the runaway league leaders have conceded just nine times since they drew 3-3 with his side on 15th October.
But they more than held their own against the Hoops, with goalkeeper Cammy Bell pulling off several stunning saves.
And despite Celtic having the better chances, Killie threatened with a few chances of their own before Van Tornhout came off the bench to head home the winner with just 10 minutes left.
Going into the final 15 minutes Celtic had been piling on the pressure, but the Ayrshire side countered and a fantastic run and cross from Chelsea loanee Ben Gordon left the simplest of chances that the Belgian couldn’t miss.
Before the game, Killie boss Kenny Shiels said that it would be a "travesty" if Celtic didn't win the treble this season, but after surviving a nervy first 10 minutes they grew in stature and were worthy winners come the end of the game.
It nearly started terribly for them, however, when defender Mo Sissoko casually passed the ball across his own area right into the path of Gary Hooper, but ‘keeper Bell came dashing off his line to save his team-mate’s blushes.
And half an hour in, Bell made a superb one-handed save, flying down to the bottom left side of his goal to turn away a header from Anthony Stokes after some fine work down the right from Bhoys captain Scott Brown.
The last meeting between these sides’ in League Cup final was in 2001, when a Henrik Larsson hat-trick secured a win for the Parkhead side.
And when Brown drilled a shot at goal from the edge of the area it looked like there might be a similar outcome, only for Bell to again get a glove on the ball and touch it over the bar.
Kilmarnock were creating a few chances for themselves however, and twenty minutes in the manager’s son, Dean Shiels, shot just the wrong side of Celtic 'keeper Fraser Forster’s post.
Killie then forced another chance through Shiels, but his shot was turned around the post by Forster and Sissoko’s header from the subsequent corner was cleared off the line.
Seconds before the half-time interval it looked as though the underdogs would be going into the break in the lead as the ball fell for Paul Heffernan on edge of area but Forster came out quickly to close him down.
The second half started off slowly and come the 60 minute mark there was still no score and Killie began to believe they might be able to get something from the game.
Celtic fans were beginning to grow restless with their side, and Anthony Stokes summed up their performance when should have done better after he manufactured himself a chance with a neat turn in the area, but saw his shot easily smothered by Bell.
Bell pulled off another top save on the 70th minute mark from a Ki Sung-Yeung header from a corner.
But with both side’s sharing pot-shots and mazy dribbles, it was the underdogs who made it count as Gordon went a terrific run down the left flank and put in a wonderful cross Van Tornhout simply couldn’t miss.
Hearts remained in mouths for Kilmarnock in injury time as Stokes went tumbling in the area, but he was adjudged to have dived and shown a yellow card, much to the fury of Neil Lennon and the Celtic faithful.
The Bhoys will now have to turn their attentions to a derby away at crisis club Rangers next week, where they could seal the League title.