Round-up of action from the weekend's Clydesdale Bank Premier League games, presented by Rob Maclean.
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The big day is just one week away and we have some top festive
football fare for you in the next 45 minutes and some big talking
points. Was it a punch or a penalty? Should it have been a red
card? Answers from injured St Johnstone striker Killian Sheridan.
His current club tackled his own team in person today. Celtic trying
to keep their title challenge on track. But St Johnstone 1 at Celtic
track. But St Johnstone 1 at Celtic Park for months ago. -- St
Johnstone won. At the back of the net!
For the rematch, Steve Lomas made two changes to his team. Callum
Davidson was ill and Sam Parkin was on the bench. Kevin Moon and David
Robertson started. Celtic were without Anthony Stokes but Neil
Lennon was happy to say same again to the team which performed so well
in Italy on Thursday night. The save. It was a decent hit by
Samaras. Enckelman, guarding his McCracken takes the action over his
crossbar. It was a great ball through. Hooper could not directed.
-- direct it. Six straight wins in the SPL coming into today. Looking
floor. Trying to work past stayed down. That was a sore one
for David Robertson to take. There is concern here. David Robertson
got dumped to the ground. Majstorovic and casualty. He really
got thumped here. It must have felt Enckelman. Gary Hooper cannot
believe it. He thought he was opening the scoring. It was a miss
got the winner when they met earlier this season. Back To Black
wins again Celtic for the first time since 1998 for St Johnstone. -
- back to back. Another fine save from Peter Enckelman. Hooper met
the cross well. Enckelman denied Celtic are ahead. He has been
denied by the goalkeeper on several occasions. Peter Enckelman could do
little. Gary Hooper was the first to react. Wanyama tried to get
their head around it. Not a fun have taken this game. -- two goals
in four minutes. Samaras played it on to Forest. It was class C and
Apology for the loss of subtitles for 40 seconds
clinical and typical Celtic. -- Just one goal this season for
Georgios Samaras. He thought they should have been a corner. He just
should have been a corner. He just seemed to write of steam. Obviously,
frustrated to not be playing today. Jasper run out of steam. Did you
think they would get something. result was a better chance of us
getting something, but the corners killed us. We came out too much for
a free kick. Seven straight wins for Celtic. You played with Neil
Lennon and you are managed by him as well for a spell. Obviously,
this is important for him at the moment, because he was teetering
with bad results. Those bad results, and then another bad result after
all of that could have really put pressure on him. But he responded
and the team responded as he would have expected. He does not like
losing. Definitely not! No manager does. Or should. I have been on the
end of a few of his discussions. And Steve Lomas will not have liked
being on the end of those set pieces. All was a killer to lose a
corner. -- always. They are always easy to prevent. The free kick here,
maybe he committed too much for word. They did well keeping the
ball in with the back leg but if he had left it and let it run out,...
At this point, you are stretched. Especially with the pace. Samaras
Especially with the pace. Samaras and then Ki Sung Yeung. I would not
have been surprised at the goalkeeper kept it out, the way he
had been playing. But they are strong on the counter-attack.
strong on the counter-attack. Samaras, heavily involved. Celtic
fans love to hate him but he is in good form. Definitely. All strikers,
when you are playing with confidence, you feel untouchable.
And then if you go a few bad games, and the fans get on your back, it
can get into her head. I think he has proven what a good player he
can be. -- get into your head. were at a comfort break when Daniel
Majstorovic got himself injured. It sounds like a fractured cheekbone.
There is a sad irony that at the moment, he has been settling into a
solid game. He went through a shaky patch. Defence has been so crucial
in this could run. He will be disappointed, to get a nasty injury
like that. St Johnstone were minus key players today, Jody Morris,
Frazer Wright, yourself. It is a frustration because you got off to
frustration because you got off to such a great start. There were a
few games where we were flying, and then we had the international break
and I got injured and he got injured. It has disrupted it a bit.
When we were not playing and there were boys waiting to come in, I
think the lads could definitely do a job. Three finishes there from
here. But occasionally, you do pass the ball,! We are saying that we
the ball,! We are saying that we need to pass more before scoring.
He is trying to take the credit after that Pep crop -- pep talk.
When the thing he will be playing again? I do not know. I would say
between four and six weeks, so maybe another two or three. I will
have to see where I am at. And you are alone at St Johnstone is coming
to an end so there are question marks. You were on loan from
Bulgaria, what would you like to have happened? Are the in the
winter break? Their own the Christmas break. I should be on
holiday. -- they are all on the Christmas break. It is all in the
air. We will see what happens between now and January. Get fit
and get playing, basically? priority is to get training. To be
ready for January. Motherwell find it easier to win on the road. They
were looking for their first Fir were looking for their first Fir
Park victory against St Mirren Jennings. A booking for the
Motherwell man. I think he thought he was fouled himself there.
Frustration creeping in. Rightly booked. I think he was booked for
that as well. There is a punch in the stomach as well. I'm not sure
changed his mind or at least the assistants have changed it for him.
I think he awarded the penalty but Tessa la has been judged to be
Brilliant work from Jamie Murphy. He might have taken it on himself,
but selfishly passes to Higdon, who It has been an intriguing match. --
thumped off the line by Jim Goodwin. What a good try by Randolph. St
Mirren pushing forward. What an Motherwell have the breakthrough.
It is the former St Mirren man, Michael had done. Great work to
manage to dig out the cross. -- Michael Higdon. He came out
victorious, putting Motherwell in front. St Mirren will feel hard
done by to be behind. Jim Goodwin caught that be double A. It is an
equaliser for St Mirren! -- Court that beautifully. Darren Randolph
flew to his right but there is just no stopping an absolute rocket like
could not hit the target. He got around the goalkeeper, and that was
Apology for the loss of subtitles for 40 seconds
The sometimes seek retrospective action. Good though be in trouble
for the puncture on Steve Jennings? I think so. I think he is lucky
that Jennings has not gone down. He could have tried to make it worse.
I think there are a few naughty tackle fear that all built up to
one. Jennings got fouled. He got angry and the first person he saw.
It has been building up for something to happen. Motherwell
will look back at it and think to ended when could well have been
red-carded there and would have been off the pitch and would not
have scored that wonder goal later on. He was perfect. Any keeper is
going to save that. In the top corner. It is one of those. He
caught it full-on, perfect. Mirren could look back as well and
see the change of decision from Calum Murray. He gives the penalty
and then he gets the word in his ear that it is off side. What do
you think? Looking at the replay. It looked like his shoulder or
something. He was taken out, there is no doubt about that. When we
look at it here it is not conclusive but he does not look
like he is in line. I do not think it was in line. Not that you are
biased or anything? Totally biased! I think the linesman has got to get
something for that tackle. They tend to go to defenders more now.
You were on loan to Motherwell, are you impressed with what they have
done this season? Yeah, now they have been flying. We played them
away. They are eight points clear of us now. They have been brilliant.
Goal of the season contender in that game and there is another one
in the short lived in this one, Kilmarnock against Dundee United at
Rugby Park. The Kilmarnock goalkeeper was the star of this
match. First he had to keep out this slightly deflected shot from
John Rankin. There would be plenty more to keep the bell ringing early
doors. Then the United boss, Peter Houston, would later claim no one
could have complained if they had been for her-0 up after 15 minutes.
Best header was touched under the crossbar. It was a frustrating day.
The United captain felt it was four games without a goal. The alarm
bells ringing again early on. Kilmarnock finally got moving down
the other end. This man went down like a sack of spuds are under
tackle. Before you could say it was not fair, the crossbar came close.
They almost made the most of the chance. Then it was made in with
this play. But an unlucky final touch. The Kilmarnock No. 13th did
not finish. Then the tangerines took the lead in terms of the
number of times they had struck the woodwork! The United skipper has
got 12 goals so far this season but his luck was just not in with best
shot going wide. -- with this shot going wide. When it is not your day,
it is not your day! Dixon with the cross, the lay with the finish, it
should have been 1-0. There was proof that John Daly himself
absolutely knew that. After a few close calls in the first have how
about the real thing from James Peden? A definite contender for
goal of the season from be 23-year- old Englishman. The goal was later
described by the manager as world class. No one disagreed. That goal
came in the 31st minute. Just in time up popped Dixon to make it 1-1
and in terms of the number of chances made it was a. That and the
United at least deserved. Dundee United dominated in the first half.
It may have been a combination of bad luck and bad finishing for them.
You would have expected them to have a hefty lead after this? By a
absolutely. They had a lot of good chances. This was a good save. He
had a few. I think that was obviously be hard won. They were
really unlucky. John Daly would expect to score with that and maybe
this one as well, wouldn't he? I think so. Strikers have the days
where it just does not seem to happen yet on another day he could
have scored all three. I know what it is like. You will appreciate
this left peg effort which is an early contender for goal lobby
season, do you reckon? Definitely. It was the angle. You cannot really
get much more into the top corner. It was perfect. Is that one better
than this one? I am going to say yes because it is a left foot. I am
just going to be biased towards left-footers. What about this one
from two seasons ago? I think that one there is afloat. Certainly the
most so of the three. -- a fluke. And now Tuesday night in Perth.
From 55 yards! He scores! Hibernian are up against from Aberdeen.
Aberdeen have managed to get ahead of Hibernian in de SPL just in the
last couple of games. This will put some daylight between them. That is
a great ball. A fantastic pass from Galbraith. Heaslip did it through
four or corner. -- he slithered it through. That was for O'Connor.
They earn and got between beekeeper and the ball. -- there are none got
between the goalkeeper and the ball. -- Vernon got between. It is true
the poor defending from Stevens, you have got to see. Now Michael
Hart. To Fallon. Fallon could not find the target. Right at the back
post with Scott. Jason Brown was equal to it but Jason Scott did not
find the space at the back end of the Aberdeen penalty area. He is
appealing for a free-kick but he is not getting it. That is a good turn.
Penalty! Spiral with a challenge. - - Sproul. This has been deemed a
penalty kick. He scores! Hibernian are unhappy with the award of the
penalty. There was a booking for it as well. Aberdeen goal in front in
what is a crucial game. Was Stephenson caught by Paul? It may
be worse than that for the Aberdeen youngster. It is a red car. It is a
straight red for this young man. We could see why perhaps this Red Ed
had come out if he had made contact. Here it is. It seems harsh on the
face of it. 10 men are having to defend here. That is a corner, and
that his wife. We are looking at the space here that the Aberdeen
players have left. They have got more players in the park where they
are needed. That man should have scored. It should be 1-1. It is not.
He out muscled Foster. It was a good turn but the finish was not
there. Scott. When he is in there. Galbraith. That might be it. Head
in hands for Danny Galbraith. Loads of space. The incident which
decided the game was the penalty decision awarded. What do you
think? I would come back to that and say it is nowhere near a
penalty. From the other end you can see a dive. It was a pretty bleak
then dive and we should say. We need a compliance officer. That
displays it pretty clearly, doesn't it? I think so. Given what has
happened. I think there will be a lot of pressure for him to be
pulled up. Garry O'Connor got off because that one looked to be a
blatant dive as well. There was a two-match ban for this. You would
imagine there has to be a consistency about this. Was the
other died any less blatant than this one? I think both of them have
led to crucial penalties. I think that man will be watching and
hoping that his opponent gets pulled up as well. They do need
that consistency. It is a little bit inconsistent. We will have to
wait and see what happens. I wonder if the first man will be pulled off
for the died in the penalty but let off for the red card he got for his
challenge on Louis Stevenson. Was he not, when you look at the angle,
trying to block the ball? I think so. He was just trying to block the
ball. It had happened already earlier on in these season. With St
Mirren someone had tried to close down the ball. The manager was
telling his players to do this. This was a yellow for the challenge
on Christopher Clarke which seemed fair enough. Was that, was the
other challenge any worse than that one? I do not think so. I think it
was not a challenge, it was him trying to block the ball. I think
the two have done maybe, yellow cards, I think even the yellow card
was harsh. He was trying to block the ball, the clearance. It is just
Six points out of six for Aberdeen over five days. Do you expect them
to find a comfortable mid-table position? I think they will be
expecting than now. Two wins in a row will give them a massive boost.
I think they will be going into games with more confidence, looking
to get up the table. The latest sideshow at Hearts, where late
wages are the norm and the for sale sign has gone up his winner Andy
Driver's refusal to play. -- is winger. Can they cope with a new
winger. Can they cope with a new distraction?
There was drama before kick-off with Andy Driver dropped from the
hard squad. There when there is no longer winning -- willing to play
under Paulo Sergio. Despite this, Hart's caught off to the perfect
start. Stephen Elliott bringing festive cheer within the first two
minutes. Not that he was showing it. And despite the off-field turmoil,
Hearts looked surprisingly sure- footed at Tynecastle. David
Templeton Woods the Dunfermline defence to purposeful fact. --
worried the Dunfermline defence. Better work from Brian McGowan down
the left-hand side, turning the dumb Furman defenders inside out.
Before setting up the midfielder who put Hearts into a two goal lead.
Great play from a gallon. And the shot deceived the keeper. --
Magellan. Jim MacIntyre with plenty to think about. There was a
threatening header from Andy Barrowman, and in the second half
Marian Kello had to look pretty lively in the Hearts goal to keep
out Liam Buchanan. Overall, Hearts were playing like they did not have
a care in the world. Stephen Elliott rattled the side netting.
And David Templeton thumped in another effort that was palmed away
by Gallagher. The rumblings from the players are becoming
increasingly loud with an official complaint fouled with the SPL.
Despite that, temples and rubble and a thunderous strike to make it
3-0. -- Tim Bolton rumbled a thunderous strike. Hearts, with
troubles off the field, certainly in harmony on the street -- on the
field. Dunfermline look increasingly vulnerable at the
moment. By the end of the match, Hearts were pinging the ball with
swagger. Ryan Stevenson thumping goalwards. Paul Gallacher got
clobbered in the process. Nothing like a win to help lift the
Tynecastle gloom. Worrying times Tynecastle gloom. Worrying times
for Dunfermline. You probably have an ability to
understand more than most of us what is happening at Hearts. You
have played some football and Bulgaria and you will know about
ownership of a football club and what that means of it there. Owners
make all the decisions and sometimes they just pay players
when they fancy it. That's right. It is just the culture, the
mentality in Eastern Europe. You see it in Russian teams, it is
definitely unsettling. For it to happen here, I was pretty shocked.
For -- you never hear about that in the UK. It is pretty unbelievable.
What do you think about Andy Driver's disclosure that he does
not want to play for Hearts in a more. Presumably disillusioned not
just by a delayed wages, but by the way the club is going. I think he
is probably looking to make a stand, is probably looking to make a stand,
to tell the owners that they cannot just treat the players like this.
The players are training every day, and they expect to be paid. The
contract should be honoured. contract should be honoured.
Obviously, he has his reasons. it is a waste of a special talent,
as we conceived. He is a good player for them. Inverness have a
good recent record of making life good recent record of making life
difficult for Rangers. Let us see how they fare on Terry Butcher's
latest return trip. The leaders made two changes to the
team which won at Hibernian. Kyle Lafferty was on the bench alongside
Lee McCulloch, Sasa Papac and Alejandro Bedoya.
Andrew Shinnie is among the sobs for Inverness. Graham Shinnie
started. -- among the subs. Fresh-air from Jelavic. What a
Jelavic, with the arm. That is a great through-ball for Willie
Mackay. Bartley things he was being Bocanegra. The second half has
Thistle are upset. They feel this may well have come off Jelavic's
arm. In a stuffy match, Rangers Polish -- apologetic. This is
ominous for the Highlanders. Papac! Smacks the crossbar. Papac was not
even focusing on that. He was focusing on the goal. Saw for
Jelavic. Graham Shinnie with the the referee's call. The Rangers
fans are not happy that Inverness are playing on. This will be
controversial. It is 11! Andrew Shinnie against his old team. -- it
is one to one. Inverness take full advantage. Nikita Jelavic was on
the deck. Inverness, as is their right to do so, played on, and have
found the net. It is Won-Hee Cho. - This is Lafferty. Blocked, blocked.
He had a bet of a charmed life. He had the second of the
intermittent's here will stop the shot from Lafferty was blocked.
What an open second half it has been. They are in again. It is
Mackay. Wrong side of the post. Rangers are walking. Believe me
carry. MacGregor. -- Billy McKay. Lee Wallace. Where did he come
from? That goal would surely end. It did not go over the line. Lee
Wallace saves Rangers'. An incredible spectacle in this second
35. This is grade by Rangers. Lafferty. Out of jail! They are out
of jail big time, Rangers. Inverness could potentially have
been 3-1 up. At the end of the season that is the sort of game
which might count big time for Rangers. Definitely. They want to
get tighter between now and the end of the season. The definitely want
those kind of games. You can look at them and thing you have been a
little bit lucky, but if you want to win titles those are the kind of
games that you win. As you say, I do not think Rangers have been at
their best for a wee while but sometimes it is just about grinding
out wins. Absolutely. I believe that. Sometimes in championships it
is just about playing badly rather than being able to win. I think
Inverness felt that some of the decisions went against them in the
game. Do you think they could have had a penalty for handball against
Jelavic? I think that would have been kind of harsh. It was in kind
of an awkward area. Is this a better shout? I think so, yeah.
Maybe the fact he has not gone down or anything. I think it was amazing
just to stop in the box. He must have got a little bit put off.
this was Richie Foran heading in the free-kick from Andrew Findlay.
As we three's it here, I think it was just marginally off? I think it
was just the shoulder, slightly off side but it could have been the
benefit which clearly should have been given. The Rangers fans were
not too happy about the build up to the equaliser because Jelavic had
been down injured. I think as we had showed in the highlights,
Rangers could have knocked the ball out as well. I think they did have
that chance. It was a good cut back with a good finish from that man.
Following that, in good chances. You do not normally get too many of
those at Ibrox. Billy Mackay around the goalkeeper stumbled slightly.
Yes, it was a good run. He was just a little bit of balance. He was
definitely a little bit unlucky. And this man was just again a
little bit of balance, don't you think? Yes, I think so, he
connected well with the ball. It was cleared of the line. You can
only talk so long about being in a false position for it to mean
anything but Inverness do not look like a team who should be in their
position? Definitely. The definitely should have got
something from the game. They created chances. To lose the game
after playing so well to an Old Firm team is a little hard to take.
I think having had so many chances in the match it was maybe obvious
what was coming next, the killer punch at 83 minutes, Kyle Lafferty
and Rangers' won the game. Yes. Jelavic was brilliant. A good
finish from Lafferty. Terry Butcher would not be too happy about this
man charging out of the back line and leaving a hole? That's right.
He should have stayed and held the line. Jelavic is a little bit
smarter than him and quicker into the box. Is it heading for a photo
finish again do you think, between the Old Firm? I think it is looking
like that now, it was not a few weeks ago. Rangers dropped a few
points. I think it is heading that way again bill. Thank you for
coming in and weeding your Christmas jumper as well!
problem. Motherwell are eight ahead of St Johnstone. They are within
one point of the Perth team, that is Hearts. Aberdeen are now six
points off the bottom after a few wins. Christmas Eve matches look
like this. A variety of kick-offs. It is Hearts macro against
Motherwell. St Mirren against Rangers. -- Hearts against