A Kris Commons penalty set Celtic on their way to a 2-0 victory on Saturday as Jamie Langfield’s red card sparked the end of Aberdeen’s perfect start to the season.
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Commons converted on the stroke of half-time after the goalkeeper had been shown a straight red card for bringing down Georgios Samaras.
The incident turned a finely-poised Scottish Premiership contest in Celtic’s favour although they had to wait until the 87th minute to put the game beyond the 10 men when James Forrest broke clear to net.
The three points at a Pittodrie packed with fans and early-season optimism gave Celtic manager Neil Lennon the boost he wanted just days before their Champions League qualifier against Shakhter Karagandy on Tuesday.
Two first-half goals were enough to keep Inverness top with a comfortable 2-0 home success against Motherwell.
Richie Foran’s early header and Billy McKay’s third goal in as many games nine minutes from the interval moved Caley Thistle two points clear of second-placed St Johnstone.
Two goals in either half ensured St Johnstone cruised to a 4-0 victory over hapless Ross County, who remain pointless after their first three games.
Last season, the Highlanders pushed St Johnstone all the way for third place and a Europa League place, but there was a clear gulf in class between the two sides today, with Nigel Hasselbaink and David Wotherspoon putting the Perth side two goals to the good after 18 minutes.
Wotherspoon would miss from the spot shortly before half-time, but it mattered little as Stevie May and Dave Mackay netted after the interval to seal a comprehensive win.
Scott Robertson’s late equaliser relieved the pressure on under-fire Hibernian boss Pat Fenlon as the Edinburgh club ended a run of four-straight defeats to draw 1-1 with Dundee United.
Stuart Armstrong had put the Tannadice men ahead after 29 minutes as it appeared Fenlon’s 18-month spell as manager was in real jeopardy.
There was controversy too 19 minutes after the interval when both Hibs’ Kevin Thomson and Tangerines defender Gavin Gunning were dismissed after an off-the-ball collision.
But Robertson’s stunning leveller may yet prove to be Irishman Fenlon’s salvation as Hibs finally collected their first Scottish Premiership point of the campaign.
St Mirren claimed their first point of the season with a 1-1 draw against Kilmarnock at St Mirren Park.
Gary Harkins’ first goal for St Mirren against his former club cancelled out Kris Boyd’s opener to give Danny Lennon’s men a point.
But it could have been all three after a foolish punch from Boyd reduced Kilmarnock to 10 men for the final half hour giving the initiative to the home side.
But despite some sustained pressure in the closing stages Saints failed to find the winner.