14/05/2017 Sportscene


Highlights of the weekend's matches in the SPFL. Including Aberdeen v Celtic, Rangers v Hearts, St Johnstone v Partick Thistl and Motherwell v Hamilton.

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The battle of the bottom six has reached fever pitch.


Which sides will fall at the final hurdle?


Steven Thompson and Michael Stewart with us as we enter the final


furlong of what continues to be a fascinating season


Hamilton Academical and Motherwell both fighting


Hamilton have Danny Lennon and Ali Crawford back in midfield at the


expense of Brussino Donati and Rakish Bingham. Model make one


change to their riding up. Stephen Robinson expected to be a battle --


Motherwell. Neither of these sides have won a


game since the split. Two games in a role that were


. Louis Moult. Setting it up for Craig Clay. That was a good opening


for Motherwell. Elliott Frear with the delivery and Louis Moult with


the setup. Clay could not get the angle correct. Dougie Imrie finding


Gillespie. That has a neat pass. Daniel Redmond. In towards Ali


Crawford. He was looking for Ali Crawford to hit the target. He has


scored nine goals this season but his last was back in December. That


was not one of his best efforts. Hamilton have not beaten marvel in


their last five meetings. That was good at delivery from Scott McDonald


to find Louis Moult. He is looking for Elliott Frear. The header away


from Ali Crawford. It breaks to Craig Clay. He is getting closer. It


had dropped nicely for him as Crawford got the header audit. Just


wide of that right-hand post. He's Crawford. Good delivery from


Crawford. Dougie Imrie?. It was good technique from Dougie Imrie?.


Getting that down off his chest. He could not get enough power in the


short. Dispossessed by Keith Lasley. It


breaks of Dougie Imrie. Here is Redmond. It breaks for Alexandre


D'Acol. What a save that was from Russell Griffiths. The man on loan


from Everton. It is only his second start for the Fir Park club.


Terrific stop matters. Stephen free with the free kick. It is Louis


Moult. And Motherwell are in front. It is their marksmen, Louis Moult


with his 18th goal of the season. It is his sixth in his three


appearances against Accies this term. The ball came off the shoulder


and looked into the corner of the net. It was a vital goal for


Motherwell. Ali Crawford again. Out to


Templeton. Trying to create the opening. David Templeton. Takes a


deflection off Campbell. It is David Templeton's first top team


appearance in football since August 20 15. He has livened things up


since coming on as a substitute. Lionel Ainsworth on the counter for


Motherwell. Looking for McDonald. Judging the jump with Devlin. He


finds Lionel Ainsworth again. Still Lionel Ainsworth. He tries to be


short. Still wide from -- just wide from Lionel Ainsworth. The model


finds Brian that all desperate to see that end up on the net. They


still have got the one goal advantage. Into stoppage time. Only


a few seconds remaining. It is full-time. You can see what it means


to the Motherwell players and fans. It pushes them three points clear of


rivals Hamilton who are now in the relegation play-off spot with two


games of the league season remaining. It is always going to be


tight. The biggest thing you have to do at the stage of the season you


have to be difficult to beat. Tactics did go out of the window. I


think we won the battle in all areas of the pitch. It is something like


Louis Moult that can win the game for you.


The Lanarkshire derby to end all Lanarkshire Barbies. It might well


be the case for the season two. Two games to go for both sides. Was this


a pivotal result in terms of the play-off spot for the relegation


equation? It was almost a play-off in its own. Never a classic with so


much at stake. It was tense and quality was at a premium. Hamilton


have lost three Matt Jeneroux and they have got a tough trip to them


all to save the season. You heard of Martin Canning saying that in a that


you are difficult to score against. The most disappointing thing for


Hamilton was the nature of the deseeded. It was very poor


defending. Looking at Georgios Samaras. He was trying to play Louis


Moult offside. That is fair enough. All that time Louis Moult has


Georgios Samaras where he wants. You heard Stephen Robinson seeing


that when you have got something like that you can win a game... Even


off shoulder. I have said all season that at the top end of the park


Motherwell would have enough to save them. He is going to say that I was


right! Marvel, defensively, as I was about to say, they are so poor they


may get dragged back into it. But he did see them there. Louis Moult been


linked with Rangers. Does that sound right to you? I am not sure. He has


had a decent season and is a natural goal-scorer. Rangers could do with


that. The thing about signing players, you have to sign players


that are better than you have got. Rangers are releasing Clint Hill and


he is a better defender than Ben Heneghan. He's part of a defence


that I am talking about being one of the worst in the league. You do not


want to tar all the defenders with the same brush but I would not say


that Motherwell is somewhere I would look to strengthen my defence to be


honest. Hamilton are second bottom and in the play-off spot. Is that


where they will remain? I do think so. Dingwall on Tuesday, tough game.


Ross County have got good form. Motherwell have their destiny in


their own hands. So, what of the Premiership's bottom


side Inverness Caledonian Thistle? They were at Kilmarnock,


Richie Foran's side hoping to build on victory over


Hamilton last weekend. As for Kilmarnock, a win would


guarantee their top flight status View my changes to the commando team


beaten by Dundee. Jamie MacDonald, having put cell and Greg Kiltie 09.


Richie Foran sticks with the team that won at Hamilton the last time


out to keep alive their slim hopes of survival.


Suddenly Alex Fisher is in on goal with a chance for Inverness. He


tried to beat Jamie MacDonald at the near post. He will be thinking now


that he should have gone on the other direction. Greg Tansey,


Aberdeen bound in the summer. Long ball from Brad McKay. That is Wilson


who flicks it away. Henri Anier. Yet as Billy Mckay. Get himself away and


the shot would not come down. How he would love to point Inverness in the


direction of survival. That is Mark Draper. Wilson crunching into the


challenge. He did get the ball. And it is going to be a yellow card.


Inverness are screaming for red. Uncompromising certainly from the


youngster. Luke Hendrie for Kilmarnock. Aiming for Greg Kiltie.


It comes Ryan Esson. He had it and lost it. Raeburn has given it away.


And Sean Longstaff rifles in the opening goal of the game. It came


off Brad McKay on its way into the back of the net. Kilmarnock could be


on the way to sealing the place in the Premiership. It is a catalogue


of errors from Caley Thistle. They are punished by Sean Longstaff. One


nil, and 17 minutes played. Mackay with the long throw. The


header cleared by Ajer. Connor Sammon. Lovely pass. He is


one-on-one with Gary Warren and it is Jones. It is 2-0. It could be the


goal that Seals not's safety. It points Caley Thistle of nearer to


championship football next season. It is a top quality goal. Adam


Frizzell with the setup. And Jones finishes it off. Warren claiming for


the header and in went Brad McKay against Adam Phillips cell. It was


certainly clumsy. John Beaton had a long look at it. Larnell Cole looks


to make the difference for Inverness Caley Thistle. They badly need to


get a call back. Iain Vigurs rules are true and Alex Fisher strikes 20


minutes from time. To lift the lingering hopes of Inverness Caley


Thistle have of turning this around. Kilmarnock badly caught out by the


football from Iain Vigurs. Suddenly there was a gaping hole in the


middle of the defence and Fisher scores. Time running out for Richie


Foran and Caley Thistle. Billy Mckay takes aim from long range. Sporting


Jamie MacDonald of his goal-line. On the end of Fisher's flight but could


not find the target. Good play from Larnell Cole. Fisher pulls it back.


David Raven with a curling effort. It needed to be better than that to


find a way past Jamie MacDonald. Back in the. Knuckle in place of


Woodman. The lay-off does not come off for Conor Sammon. Bundled over


by Longstaff was Iain Vigurs. Iain Vigurs takes the free kick quickly.


Billy Mckay with the chance. He is furious that the offside flag has


gone up against him. He did get his shot away. It was blocked by the


onrushing McDonald. Long ball from Liam Polworth. Alex Fisher knocks


down. Kevin Goze Billy Mckay but it goes wide. Credit to Ajer for the


challenge. The on loan Celtic defender playing an important part


as the game slipped away from Inverness. The way that we play


today was outstanding, right from the opening whistle. Last week I


said we were not acted but today and you that we were. There was a


killing in the dressing room of togetherness that was brilliant. We


have finally got beer, the two games remaining, we back up to seventh. We


need to cut out individual mistakes. It has been the story of the season


and we lost lots of points with individual mistakes. You work hard


on the training ground and what can you do if that happens when the


goalkeeper dropped one? It is disappointing, very disappointing


but the players have been great for me all season and we need a couple


of results to go our way this season and we need six points.


Richie Foran felt that Inverness desert of three points. At this


stage of the season it is not about performance. It is about results.


Barring a miracle, they are gone. The ramifications for the club and


for Richie Foran will be massive. He is full of contradictions. He talks


about individual errors that have cost him so much but then he says


the players have been great for me all season. There are the


individuals making mistakes? They have only won five games. They did


create chances. They still have a chance. Now, they are going down.


There is no doubt. They got a good result last week but about able to


back it up. For me, there is no doubt that they are going down. It


is disappointing to see the club struggled in the way that they are


but I have no doubt they are going to get relegated. No doubt in your


mind? They are going to a team in form at the Dundee in midweek. The


win last week was unexpected and give them a boost going into the


scheme but they could not follow it up. Lee McCulloch plays his cards


close to his chest. Happy birthday. While would he not be the next, a


manager? That is the question, fans will be asking. It is dragged on for


a long time. The chat was he might not want to colours to the mast when


relegation was a possibility. He has done very well. He has more than


claimed his stated that he should get the job. I do not think there is


any reason why he he should not be named... I would be surprised if it


is not announced this week. He has the building blocks, Jordan Jones


excelled. He is somebody that produces and gives a bit of an X


Factor. He plays in the wider area. When he gets into these positions,


he has got a good end product at times. He is direct, he commits and


attacks. He causes problems for teams. Most of the times you see


him. This is a wonderful goal. He shows desire. He is direct, faces up


to defenders and gets on the left foot and there is the end product.


That is a big goal for Kilmarnock. Looking towards the future, he is


somebody that will be pivotal and in Lee McCulloch's forts.


To the final game in the bottom six now.


Dundee still not safe despite two wins out of two under


Ross County essentially safe, barring the most unlikely


the side that won at, but last week they have been transformed since he


took the reins. A win here will go a long way to ensuring they will not


be dropping. Ross County bring back top scorer Liam Boyce after


suspension. He has not been seen after banging four past Inverness


and the damage. One point will extinguish any remaining relegation


fears. This is Jim O'Brien. Martin Woods. Promising build-up from the


visitors. Michael Gardyne. What is saved. What a save from Scott Bain.


This is more like the Scott Bain of all that we have seen over the past


couple of years. Nodded in Guy Caron for Liam Boyce.


He does it again. -- nodded in by Craig Curran. Always there and


always on the scoresheet. Liam Boyce, up to 22 for the season.


Redhot. And that is a big goal for Ross County.


Liam Boyce frock Craig Curran. They are shooting for the penalty team


are the Staggies. It was Scott Bain on Craig Curran. The referee not


interested. That is in towards Craig Curran who is claiming handball


against Darren O'Dea. The referee has turned a blind eye. It was Craig


Curran attacking it and it did come off Darren O'Dea. Two wins in 16 for


Dundee against Ross County. This is better for them. Kammy care. Held


comfortably in the end by Scott Fox. Paul McGowan and Mark O'Hara was not


too far away. Scott Fox got a touch on that and it is a corner. Paul


McGowan got into a good area. It seems like a long time ago since


Dundee's impressive when on the opening game of the season in


Dingwall. That kind of Marcus Fraser. -- that came of Marcus


Fraser. Dundee are knocking on the door and Fraser did not know much


about that. El-Bakhtaoui. Here goes again. That just flashes over. It is


not happening for him today. He does not lack confidence. El-Bakhtaoui.


That is came through towards Cammy Kerr. He goes down and penetrate!


Without a doubt. -- and penalty. It is a yellow card for Craig Curran as


well. I do not think he can have too many complaints. Craig Curran has


had a real surge in form since signing a new deal. Darren O'Dea who


scored from the spot against Ross County last month and does it again.


He is loving that one. That could be a huge goal in Dundee's season. The


penalty was smashed home by Darren O'Dea. It is dropped over for Kevin


Holt. This is Mark O'Hara. And then Kevin Holt goes down. No penalty but


it is another appeal. This was the initial effort from Mark O'Hara.


Kevin Holt felt he was upended by Jason Naismith. Back-to-back wins


for Dundee coming into this one since Neil McCann took over and


Marcus Haber should have made it three victories out of three. He was


onside was the Canadian. Really impressive second-half showing in


particular for Dundee. It is Kevin Holt. And that was Scott Fox. That


will surely mean that Ross County will get out of here with a point


and Dundee should feel that they have all three. Things happen and


you are tested, it shows a lot of character that you can come back


from it. That group and the run they want a Hoilett goal would not have


came back from that. My goodness, I am delighted with them. They showed


character. We should have been more clinical with the couple of


opportunities that we had but it was not to be. I felt we got really


sloppy and we invited Dundee back into the game and give them the


left. One you do that to a team that of one two on the back and have got


a big crowd at home, they have got their tails up. We went from control


to hanging on. The first time Neil McCann has not


won a match for Dundee. Dundee are not arithmetically safe on 37 points


but it is as good as. I think they are safe now. They started truly an


Ross County will the better team. They showed a lot of character to


come back into the game. I should have asked the oracle. I said the


Dundee were saving a few weeks ago. In all seriousness. A lot was made


of Paul Hartley losing his job. You heard Neil McCann referencing


himself the character that they have shown. On the poor before he came


in, they might not have came back from that and that is big


turnaround. I was impressed by Kammy care. His first full season for


Dundee. He spent part of last season on loan to Peterhead. He always


looked to go forward. He is young and exciting at full-back. His final


ball was not particularly good here. He was a standout player for Dundee


yesterday. His first thought is can I get forward? The cuts in on his


weaker foot and gets a shot on target. He ends up winning the


penalty kick. I do not think it was a penalty. I think Craig Curran


comes across and gets his arm up. I think it was the legs of Cammy Kerr


that collided. I do not think it was a penalty but he gets into the areas


where he causes problems for the opposition. That is where


youthfulness kind bring you energy down the right-hand side from Cammy


Kerr. We'll Ross County keep hold of Liam Boyce? Another great strike


from an impressive player all season. I think there will be teams


that are looking at him. He has one year left on his contract. Ross


County, if they get their team playing as they should, they will be


challenging in the top six. There is no doubt in my mind that there are


teams in the top six right now looking at him. Who do Ross County


go from here for next season? This was not part of the grand plan. It


will always be difficult after last year to reach those days again after


you think about what they achieved. They are only points buying Partick


Thistle who sitting sixth. I am not buying that. They are two points


Brian Partick Thistle Misha Mark because they did well last year it


was always difficult this year. The team that they have got and the


manager in Jim McIntyre, there was another boat then they should have


been challenging regardless. It would be boring if you ever agreed.


Hearts had slumped in the last few months but they still had a chance


of Europe as they arrived at Ibrox to face Rangers.


The home side hoping to seal third place.


Clint Hill is leaving Rangers button is pressed into service with Danny


Wilson injured. Jack and Victor swap places for


hearts. Viktor Noring is in goals for Hamilton.


Interception by Hill. James Tavernier charging forward. Kenny


Miller, first time. Joe Garner. 1- Rangers inside seven minutes. And


Joe Garner who struck late at Firhill last weekend is on the mark


early at Ibrox. Not picked up here. He made the most of the header,


clipping the post on the way in. It is the 10th Rangers goal for Joe


Garner. Aaron Hughes, he has just signed a


contract extension with hearts. Good touch for Esmael Goncalves. Don


Cowie. Good strike from the skipper. 20 the power behind this. It was


unlikely to be beating Wesley Fotheringham for them that angle.


Lovely touch from Kenny Miller. Always involved in the good things


for Rangers. Here goes again. Josh Windass. Squeezes in the cutback.


Joe Garner. It was a really good save from Viktor Noring. Astor


Kristian Colback saw his clearance canon of Marton. Rangers had the


chance to make it two. Johnson not picked up. Joe Garner was on the


way. Better from hearts after a faltering start to the scheme. Kenny


Miller and Joe Garner in the way. Prince Buaben steps out of defence.


Esmael Goncalves wriggling his way through. He hits the deck looking


for a penalty. It was Clint Hill who made the challenge. Did he get his


toll on the ball? That was certainly the ruling of the Bobby Madden.


Still 1-0 Rangers. The flick from Garner, end goes when Dallas. The


outcome was inevitable. A red card and hearts will play more than one


hour of this match with ten men. He did not react quickly to the flick


from Gardner and then minutes that 85 macro got in behind, the Hearts


defender was in big trouble -- Windass. Kenny Miller plays it back


again. 78 macro. He misses the target. He was


unmarked at the corner kick and will be thinking he could have done a


whole lot better. Another makai corner kick. Hill, off the post. It


is scrambled away. Just a fraction away from 2-0. Leaping high for the


header, the veteran defender and that was close. 55-macro.


-- Jon Toral. This looks very promising for a Hearts. 13 eye level


things up, six minutes into the second half. -- Goncalves. And


Johnsen sets up Goncalves for his eighth Hearts goal, it is 1-1. Can


Hearts consolidate having equalised. Tavernier, with the cross. And


21-macro has Rangers in front again. Just 90 seconds after Hearts


equalised -- Barry McKay. He should have punched and Barry McKay accepts


the invitation. He scored the equaliser last weekend and he


rattles in the goal here which makes it 2-1 to Rangers. Liam Smith.


Playing a lot of good football, Hearts, it is Johnsen. A really


disappointing effort. Having carved out the opportunity here, skipping


clear of Clint hill. Nicholson got a foot in and 32-macro with the


chance. -- Goncalves Djoum. The cutback by


Barry Mackay. -- Barry McKay. Some good shot stopping in the game. A


real howler for the Rangers second goal. Why corn. Hesitation at the


back from Hearts and Martin White corner with the chance to tie things


up -- Waghorn. Waghorn should have scored that. Victory for Rangers as


they seal third place. I am even more convinced that we will be a


very good team. Michael Stewart, are you convince? I think results would


suggest otherwise. There is no doubt that it was an improved performance


but for the first part of the game it was very poor


and I find those comments quite strange. They are looking to have a


big turnover of players as well. What team was he expecting was going


to be good? It looks like there will be big changes in the summer. They


started off, it was very bad and to go to Ibrox and start the way that


they did, giving yourself an uphill battle, this is the goal and you


look at Krystian Nowak. He has to close that. There is no one there.


The danger is in front of him. Gardner, the guide puts it in the


back of the net and he throws up his arm. He is pointing out wide, the


danger is start out wide, that is the gap you need to close at the


point of this header, he needs to narrow off and deepened. He has to


do better, but he would affect the ball over the top. Square pegs and


round holes. Krystian Nowak is not our right back and Prince Buaben is


not a centre-half. The big moment came in that in right channel. They


have given themselves an uphill battle, when it went down to ten


men, there was a big turnaround. After Hearts went to ten men, they


played better. They changed shape at half-time. The interesting thing for


me was leaving the two strikers on. I thought they would have sacrificed


a striker but they did that to keep Rangers under pressure. It also


meant that the Rangers full-backs could not press on. He brings a bit


of calm to the team. Rangers in the second half were desperately bad and


gave away the ball and it worked for Hearts. They counter-attacked at


every opportunity. This is so lucky for Smith. They are a man down and


they played like the team, it was as if Rangers had ten men. A big


mistake in the middle of the park. This one does not come to anything


but it shows you, numbers flooding forward. For me, Hearts deserve to


get something out of the game. They had structure in -- and a plan. He


looks at the corner, this is the goal for Hearts. It is a brilliant


counterattack. The desire they showed to go from one end of the


pitch to another, Rangers were slack and gave the ball away. Jason Holt


is not a sitting midfielder. You have to win this tackle. You're the


last man, you cannot not win it. Brilliant from Johnsen. He slides it


in to Goncalves. Positives to be taken, no doubt. It is the end of


the season, but at critical few months. I don't think there is any


doubt, because a lot of the players, a lot of them were on short-term


deals and there will be a big turnover of players. The club are


going to be hoping beyond hope that it works out, but you have got the


start of the season, the cup and then the first 56 games of the


league, they will all be away from home and there is a lot of games, a


lot of the games away from home that will be crucial because if you come


to September and October and the results have not been great... As


for Rangers, how do you rate a third-place finish? It has been an


average season, no trophies, no finals, they have a circus off the


pitch and it has been a bad season. The other thing I would add, if


Robbie had not left Hearts, there was a good chance they could have


been challenging properly and Rangers might have been squeezed


down to fourth place. Next St Johnstone


versus Partick Thistle. The Saints aiming to


seal European football. Thistle still with a chance


of catching Hearts. Alan McManus is back. Alan Archibald


is able to: porn Danny Devine after he missed the dramatic defeat to


Rangers -- is able to call upon. Both sides deserve a real credit for


their performances this season. St Johnstone still looking to be


confirmed as European qualifiers. James Tavernier -- Greenham Common


is looked for a penalty on air. Here is Danny Devine. He got into a bit


of trouble and it is Edwards. Hit with plenty of power. Mannus was


able to get down low. Partick Thistle have won on their past four


visits to this ground. Here is Edwards, operating in dangerous


pockets behind the attackers. Now it is Barton and that those just wide.


He scored the only goal as Partick Thistle knocked St Johnstone out of


the Scottish Cup earlier in the season. Wotherspoon, knocked away as


far as one son. Cerny could not gather it. It was dipping and


swerving all over the place from Swanson. Eastern into Craig and back


it comes to the midfielder. 35-macro looking to turn. He got away from


Keown, he did not have the space to work away from the target --


Cummins. He looks to get Cummins" Clay, Cummins, Swanson arriving,


penalty, says the referee. Our great piece of play by Danny Swanson. The


quick feet got him away from Keown. No complaints. Danny Swanson has


been the penalty King this season and he has done it again. That takes


into 15 for the campaign, nine have come from the spot. The goalkeeper


had no chance. Six home wins for Tommy Wright. They have struggled.


Eastern. -- Easton. Drilled hard and low. Cerny kept his eye on it as it


came through the bodies. Swindon Town expressed an interest in Alan


Archibald but he is staying. It is the header from Scobbie and great


reactions from Cerny to tip it over the top. This looked bound for the


net, but for the intervention and the goalkeeper. It is Christie Eliot


and that is cheaply given away to Wotherspoon. Richard Foster breaking


onto that pace, but Cerny did so well and he had to come out, as


Foster looked to go around the goalkeeper. St Johnstone have been


the dominant side in the second half, but 45-macro gets it into


Doolan. -- Erskine. Foster. Eyeing up


Lindsay. It is a delicate ball through to 68. He goes down under


the challenge from Steven Lawless -- Paul Paton. Knocked away by Keown


and here comes Danny Swanson. It is tipped over the top by Cerny who is


keeping Partick Thistle in theirs. All four meetings this season have


been won by the away team. Liam Lindsay is the target. It is knocked


away by Liam Craig as St Johnstone looked to hold onto what they have


and at the moment that would be guaranteed for the place and


European football for next season. What an achievement that would be.


Drops for Paul Paton on the edge of the box and tipped wide by Cerny.


They ask the questions of the referee as Cummins seemed to be


hauled to the ground by Osman and when it dropped to Paul Paton he hit


it first time. They said that is four seasons I have been in charged


and I keep thinking, can we get better and maintain it and they do


respond and they go again. They have been magnificent again this season


and they deserve to be in Europe. They are the fourth best team. Our


performance level dropped massively. Compared to last week, our passing


was crisp and good. We were out battles and outplayed. St Johnstone


punching above their weight, Tommy Wright said it was the best of their


fourth-place finishes. They do so well season after season. Alan


Archibald, got linked with jobs down south. The same is not true of Tommy


Wright. It is not. You have to wonder why. I think it


will come, he has proven time and time again that he is a very capable


manager and St Johnstone have a history of managers moving on. You


look at previous managers who moved on from Sam Johnson to down south


and I think it will come. St Johnstone will want to keep hold of


him. I think perhaps a bit of snobbery. You look at what he has


produced at St Johnstone with guys like Danny Swanson. He is someone


who has been that little bit of a flair addition to the team. Getting


the penalty, he is the guy who has made a big difference and he is


someone, Tommy Wright, when you're talking about if he will move on.


Danny Swanson will be moving on and he will need something to fill that


void and he has done it. Season after season, consistency from the


manager and for me, when you talk about why he has not been linked


with other jobs, I think there is a level of snobbery. If I was a top


six side in Scotland, I would be looking at Tommy Wright.


Realistically, saying why is he not getting offered those jobs. When you


look at teams down south, we spoke about Nottingham Forest going after


Mark Warburton, not Forest were in desperate dire Straits on the verge


of getting relegated and I do not understand why Tommy Wright was not


being looked at. They had to replace some people. They keep on doing it,


season after season. They do not have big turnaround like hearts at


Christmas. Kilmarnock, pre-season as well. The have two or three players


in key areas, the keep the core strength together and they know what


they're doing, they are organised, they have a togetherness. Despite


Danny going they will find ways replace them. Partick Thistle, they


have had a great season and it is job done as far as they are


concerned. They will not catch hearts. When they had hearts at


Tynecastle, if they'd been able to get two points, they might have


challenged. It has been a great season for Partick.


And finally tonight first versus second.


The Friday night Scottish Cup Final dress rehearsal between


Two changes. Adam Rooney is the second change. He is being rested.


Anthony O'Connor and Jayden Stockley are in. Celtic made three changes.


Scott Sinclair is back. 55-macro is back in.


-- Mikael Lustig. Boyata! Celtic ahead in three minutes. It is three


in three games for Boyata. He got the winner when the sides last met,


eased his way away from Taylor, top of the scoring. Celtic battling for


it. Griffiths on the chase, up against Reynolds. Pushes him wide.


Griffiths with the nutmeg, he is away from Reynolds. Deflected back,


McGregor, Logan will send out onto Armstrong and Celtic have a second.


Just eight minutes gone. Celtic are running riot already. Lovely play


from Lee Griffiths, turned back by Taylor, the shot from McGregor and


Logan passed it to Armstrong. His goalkeeper was behind him, great


finish from Armstrong and he joins Lee Griffiths on 15 goals for the


season. Celtic struggling so far, four out of four against the Dons


this season. Reynolds and Taylor try to hold him off. It is 3-0. 11


minutes played. And Celtic are having their way with Aberdeen. Jill


Lewis at fault. It was not unstoppable, great shot but not


unstoppable. Every picture tells a story and that is a very unhappy one


for Aberdeen. Consett dying, Boyata gets it away. Taylor, Graham shinny.


Play on says the referee. Brilliant goal! "Body beautifully. Credit to


the referee, he could have given a free kick, Craig Gordon, simply no


chance. Aberdeen blown away by Celtic, trying to get back into it.


They have got one back. Great ball across from Maclean and starkly got


in the way. Mikael Lustig. Brilliantly done. A couple of goals


against Aberdeen already this season and away once more. The Aberdeen


marking has left off a to be desired. Onto Considine. Aberdeen


building well. Up to Jonny Hayes. He swings it across, away by the


goalkeeper on to Maclean and a chance again. Great save by Craig


Gordon, Aberdeen are really pushing for the second goal. Maclean saw his


effort blocked and a decent stop. Celtic can break here but Griffiths


cannot hold onto it. Graham shinny got it away and Celtic can break. It


is three onto. On thinker, tacking back, great tackle, top-class


defending. Great ball by Roberts. Mikael Lustig. Back in. Good ball


across, but -- Maclean tried to get in. Opportunity for Aberdeen. It was


Shinnie. Celtic to miss the steadying presence of Scott Brown.


Shinnie goes through. Is that penalty? No, says the referee.


Shinnie was touch by Craig Gordon and that this very point is making.


He comes forward and get the touch on the ball and it was taken out. A


pivotal moment in the match and it breaks the way of Celtic. Just


bounces on the way. Very unlucky to have a free kick against him.


Griffiths and Logan getting into it. Maclean. Logan, ball in hand, you


cannot do it. Celtic, two games from an unbeaten league season. Three


games from a trouble. Kenny McLean. Can he find a way, can he find a way


to make it 3-2, the answer is no. Kenny McLean, normally reliable and


as the fans rose an expectation, the shots rose higher. The second half


as quite lived up to the action of the first, four goals in 12 minutes.


Scott Sinclair driving in and Logan has to be careful. That is a great


effort from Scott Sinclair. Logan should have known he was going to


cut in on the right -- inside on the right. Maclean. Aberdeen have not


given up. Considine trying to get ahead on that and Logan as well.


Considine, in four Niall McGinn. Great effort, plenty of pace on the


shot, getting away from Craig Gordon. I think the game tonight


will make us more confident of getting into the final, even though


we have lost. The Cup Final is the only thing that matters now. It is


what we are working towards for the next two weeks. And for me, the


result might it is disappointing. The performance tonight was exactly


what I was looking for. Aberdeen are very directing. Everything is a long


ball, there is no will sequence of passes. The ball from behind as in


the air, the ball on the site, great crosses into the box, in the air.


They are having to deal with a lot of long ball football. I am very


proud of the team and how they have stood up to them. We have shown the


quality that we can play but coming to Pittodrie is never easy.


It has been quite an incredible run they have been on and 100 points,


one Celtic fan said it has been a dream season. Fantastic, the only


criticism I would give is that they did not manage to get 100 goals in


the same game. It may well come, but they have been great, to get 100


points, there were to get 100 goals this season, they have three games


to go unbeaten, the record has just continue to fall for this side and


at their early deserving performance, result and worthy of


champions. Incredible game to watch, what did you make of the comments of


Brendan Rodgers, everything is a long ball in terms of the Aberdeen


directness. Maybe a bit harsh, there is more to Aberdeen and long balls.


The grasp balls fitted into the box are excellent and they work to get


the ball into the box well. This is individual brilliance from Jonny


Hayes. He has had a fine season, big player for the club. This is an


unbelievable cross from Kenny McLean. He knows that Jayden


Stockley is a big lad. Jayden Stockley should score. They use the


width of the pitch so well. He does not deal well with the cross. A good


snapshot and a decent save after that. Aberdeen will be pleased.


Because they caused Celtic more problems. They can go on to this


final and they can win it, they have the players that can hurt Celtic but


they cannot defend like they did in the opening ten minutes. The one


thing I would say about Aberdeen and the criticism that Brendan Rodgers


has given, they do stretch game very well, they have to look into those


pockets of space that they create and unfortunately they did not have


Ryan Christie because he cannot play against Celtic but if Shaun Maloney


signs for Aberdeen, if they have got some on there, they can utilise that


is where they could hurt Celtic. Aberdeen fans will be asking if you


think it was a penalty. Yes! It was a definite penalty. I cannot


understand why it is not given. You can understand? I think it is a


penalty all day long but looks unorthodox because Shinnie, his leg


is dangling as kicks it away. There is no question, it is a penalty, but


look slightly unorthodox, the referee is. He almost decapitated


him. That would have brought the game to 3-2 and it would have been


game on. Bigger gap next season? I think it will be hard for Celtic to


replicate this season. It has been one off in terms of going unbeaten,


it has been incredible, to reach those levels again next year... I


think they will finish the season unbeaten. It depends, Brendan


Rodgers is going to invest in a few key players, but I do not think they


can replicate this season. You think Aberdeen can beat Celtic in the


Scottish Cup final but you do not think they will. I think they will


and Derek will take positives. You hear him talking about being


methodical and work out how he will do it. He can draw a lot from that


game on Friday. The cross balls is a key thing. Saying all that, if


Celtic Perry to lick capabilities they will win the treble. Will they


take much beating, Aberdeen? They have not beaten Celtic this season


but there are elements of the game, if they can find a solution, they


have got a chance. Thank you. All that leaves the Ladbrokes


Premiership table looking like this. A Celtic century of points


after that win at Pittodrie. Brendan Rodgers' side 30


points clear of Aberdeen. Rangers and St Johnstone will join


both those teams in European At the bottom Kilmarnock


and Ross County are safe. Dundee, Motherwell and


Hamilton still sweating. But Inverness are


sweating most of all. Time for us to exit


through the Sportscene trapdoor. From all of us on the


team - bye for now. It would be the greatest night


of their lives... the night when Celtic Football Club


captured the hearts of Europe... They were like brothers. I loved


them. Absolutely loved them. A bunch of boys fae Baillieston,


Bellshill and Saltcoats ..became the first British club


to win the European Cup. When it came to my TV habits,


I'd watch anything. But now I can sign in online


and get more of what I love. I'm kept up to date


with the shows I love


Jonathan Sutherland introduces highlights from the weekend's matches in the SPFL. Champions Celtic begin the weekend with a Friday night trip to second-placed Aberdeen. On Saturday Rangers host Hearts and St Johnstone entertain Partick Thistle, as the race for European places intensifies. In the bottom half, there's a Lanarkshire derby as Motherwell host Hamilton, Dundee host Ross County and Inverness are away to Kilmarnock.

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