Celtis within one after Saturday win

Celtic closed to within a point of Rangers in the Scottish Premier League on Saturday after the leaders lost at St. Mirren and their Glasgow rivals beat Kilmarnock.

Celtic can now topple champion Rangers from the top of the standings with a victory in the Old Firm derby on Wednesday.

Rangers will be without both Lee McCulloch and Dorin Goian for the match at Celtic Park after both were sent off in Rangers’ 2-1 loss at St. Mirren.

After falling behind to Lee Wallace’s strike, St. Mirren took advantage of McCulloch’s first-half dismissal, hitting back through goals from Aaron Mooy and Paul McGowan to secure its first win over Rangers since 2008. Rangers lost Goian late on to a second booking.

Georgios Samaras’ double ensured Celtic beat Kilmarnock 2-1 to make it eight wins in a row for his side.

The Greece striker headed in the opener from Cha Du-ri’s cross in first-half stoppage time and netted again seven minutes after the break, slamming a low shot into the net after swerving his way into the penalty area.

Kilmarnock substitute Danny Racchi scored from 25 yards (meters) in the 87th minute to make it a nervy ending for Celtic.

The gap between Celtic and Motherwell increased to 13 points after the third-placed side lost 2-0 at Hearts.

Dunfermline remains stranded to the foot of the standings after losing 3-0 to St. Johnstone. Hibernian, which is only off the bottom on goal difference lost 3-1 at Dundee United, while Inverness moved four points clear of the danger zone with a 2-1 victory over Aberdeen.