Scottish Premier League Roundup, Apr. 9

BY foxsports • April 9, 2011

Celtic extended their lead in the SPL with a 1-0 win over St Mirren, while Motherwell confirmed their top-six place with a draw against Hearts.

Celtic are now five points clear at the summit after Kris Commons came off the bench to grab a late winner after the Hoops had largely served up a drab affair at Parkhead.

Rangers will be seeking to reduce the deficit again when they travel to Hamilton on Sunday.

Meanwhile Motherwell's place in the top six was confirmed as they played out a goalless draw at Hearts.

Ross Forbes struck the top of the crossbar after 75 minutes as Well were second best in the stalemate but still confirmed their place in the top half of the table after Inverness drew 1-1 at Kilmarnock.

Hearts had the better of territory and possession, but struggled to break down a stubborn visiting defence and now have one win in six games as their bid to wrap up third place continues to stutter.

A swift first-half exchange of goals by Jonny Hayes and Liam Kelly saw Kilmarnock and Inverness share the points at Rugby Park.

Hayes put the Highlanders in front after a 10th-minute solo run, but his opener was cancelled out three minutes later by an excellent finish from Kelly for the hosts.

Kilmarnock looked the likelier side to clinch victory in the second half, with good opportunities falling to Rui Miguel and William Gros.

The points were shared but the draw, along with Motherwell's similar result at Hearts, ended Inverness' hopes of a top-six place.

St Johnstone manager Derek McInnes was sent to the stand at Tannadice as Dundee United edged a bad-tempered Tayside derby 2-0 to remain on course for a fourth-place finish.

Referee Mike Tumilty harshly sent off visiting defender Steven Anderson after 15 minutes and then banished McInnes from the touchline after he remonstrated with assistant referee Keith Sorbie in the aftermath of Johnny Russell's controversial opener - claiming the United player had scored from an offside position.

Sorbie had an eventful afternoon. It was his intervention that convinced Tumilty to give Anderson a second yellow card for an apparent foul on Swanson. It seemed clear to everyone inside Tannadice that the United winger had gone down easily and television replays backed this up.

St Johnstone performed admirably with 10 men but David Robertson's late second sealed the win for United.

Akpo Sodje netted the only goal of the match in the afternoon's other game to earn Hibernian a 1-0 victory at Aberdeen in what was essentially a dead rubber in the depths of the bottom six.

Sodje rifled home a Matt Thornhill pass after Dons midfielder Peter Pawlett had been caught in possession, despite the home side having seemed the more threatening.

But the game quickly degenerated into end-of-season fare, and in the end the single goal proved to be the winner.


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