26/01/2014 Sportscene


Jonathan Sutherland introduces highlights of the weekend's matches in the new SPFL Scottish Premiership, with comment on and analysis of the week's main talking points.

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Good evening. Welcome to Sportscene. We spruced the place up a bit, as


can you see. But some things stay the same, the best professional


football Scotland has to offer and the pundits couldn't be improved


upon, Pat nefb and Michael O'Neill join us -- Nevin. Celtic are


determined to stretch their unbeaten run. Hibs determined to bounce back


after defeat last weekend. Neil Lennon coming face to face with


Terry Butcher. The last time Celtic were at Easter Road, Pat Fernon was


still manager of Hibs. Hibs without injured Ryan McGivern.


Four changes including the return of Alex Harris. A first start for Sam


Stanton. ( Oh, mistake and mix up between


Forster and Nelson. Kris Commons makes them pay.


Eight minutes played, 1-0 Celtic. A 20th goal of the season for Commons.


It's brilliantly finished off. What a mess at the back for Hibs. It's a


gift. He hits the deck. The referee Craig


Thompson was very close and said no. Collins looks aghast here.


There's the contact. No penalty. Good strike. Beaten away by Forster.


It came off Van Dijk. It was heading goalwards. It was cleared in the end


by Izaguirre. Izaguirre didn't like that challenge


from Collins. Disappointed there not to be working


goalkeeper Forster. A lovely bit of skill which worked the opening. He's


caught the eye for Terry Butcher's team.


Zoubir flicked it in. It's claw add way by Forster. It looked as if he


was -- clawed away by Forster. That's another wonderful effort.


This time on the left foot. This is a good save. It bounced just in


front of the Celtic keeper. Good turn. Good hit! Wonder save


Fraser Forster. This looked to be heading in from


Stanton. What a strike, matched by the save.


Handball given. I think Hibs reckoned Samaras was offside. The


free kick and the booking for that handball.


Van Dijk, oh, something special! No goalkeeper was keeping this out. A


cracker from Van Dijk. 2-0. Now Celtic a lot more comfortable


have been with stood the Hibs pressure and then scored.


Teemu Pukki lines one up and it's gone in, straight through the gloves


of Ben Williams. Any doubt about the outcome here has


been removed. It's a fourth goal for Celtic from


Finnish striker Pukki. Penalty. What was he thinking? Well,


he should know better. It's Kris Commons to round things


off for Celtic. 21 goals for the season now. This is 4-0.


We had to rely on phraser to make a couple of exceptional saves. We're


going to get tested along the way. We weren't at our best for 15, 20


minutes of the game. We stood up to it, saw through. Our quality came


through at the end. It's another clean sheet, a fantastic win on a


difficult pitch today. The handball against Michael Nelson is bizarre.


The referee said it's hit his hand, it wasn't deliberate, about you it


stopped it going through to an opponent, who might have been in an


offside position and he was booked for. It the same referee and the


same player had the same incident at Aberdeen and it wasn't given. Yet it


was going through to an Aberdeen player in the box. He hasn't given


it. We had an incident against St Mirren where the St Mirren player


handled the ball twice in the box, might not have been deliberate, but


preventing the ball going through to one of our players and that wasn't


given. Butcher flummoxed by handball decisions, does he have a case? I


think he has. The important thing he said there, deliberate. The referee


suggested it wasn't deliberate, but he was still booking him. Look, have


a look at the laws. The referees tell me, look at the laws. Do you


what it is, it has to be deliberate. You don't think it's deliberate?


Have a look at the other ones, this is not being biassed. I don't think


that's deliberate either. Last weekend that was Adam Campbell. A


lot of people thought it should have been a penalty. I think that's a


penalty. As a manager I would be disappointed not to get a penalty. I


think that's a penalty as well. This is the confusing thing, I would give


them the penalties. But by the law, they're not penalties. That's the


odd thing. That's why Terry is coon fused. You don't know when they're


-- confused. You don't know when they're going to be given. Some


referees go for the deliberate, some ignore it. The managers don't know


where they are. The problem with interpretation we are all with


different views. Let's talk about Kris Commons, 21 goals for the


season. He's having a fantastic season. Had ewas helped to begin


with with hapless defending. Look at this, he goes back five yards there,


if he does, no problem, don't do this. Attack heap other. It's a


shame, but it was a pivotal moment. Celtic played really well. They


controlled. It it was good to see that Hibs didn't bottle it. They


came back into the game. James Collins had a shout for a penalty.


What was your view about Van Dijk involved? When you see the


interdent, it's a good ball here by Liam Craig down the side of Van


Dijk. Collins is in acres of space. Van Dijk has left his leg out. There


there is contact and a slight hesitation from Collins before he


goes down. For me, it's a penalty. If he goes down earlier, there is


contact there. There's no contact with the ball. That's a penalty,


Pat. Yes, there's contact and he's thrown himself to the ground. The


referee is in a great position there, fantastic referee. He just


got it wrong. Name Stanton resonates around Easter Road. He made his


first start for Hibs. How impressed were you? Hugely. He's been really


good. Their confidence and belief in the second half, even when they were


down, him and Zoubir and Harris, great to see Harris back as well. I


think Terry come onto this season by fluke as much as anything else. But


those three look great together. The most important point being it's the


man that's stopping them. Forster was great. Brilliant. We talk about


Celtic not losing games, no wonder with that. That's a fantastic save.


A few question marks about some of Lennon's signings this season, but


Virgil Van Dijk he's struck gold. What a goal today. He's been from


day one, even when he came in, a difficult time in the Champions


League qualifiers, we see the goal here, it's a phenomenal free kick


with pace on the ball. The goalkeeper has no chance. The


technique is superb. Just his all-round game, his ability, we've


seen n him at St Johnstone with a goal. His ability to come out with


the ball and strength defensively, he's an excellent piece of business.


Real find by Lennon. It's the argument for who is going to be the


Player of the Year. Everyone's talking about Kris Commons just now.


In fact, I'd look at Van Dijk. The icing on the cake is usually what is


the Premier League going to look at, Van Dijk, Commons? You know, it's


probably going to be Van Dijk. Heavy dollop of rain had threatened the


top of the table clash between Motherwell and Aberdeen yesterday.


It did get played, but there will be controversy come the final whistle.


Aberdeen on the road to revenge after giving Motherwell the gift of


three points on Boxing Day. And high spirited dons fans happy with life


under Derek. Really delighted with the way it's went this season. I did


get excited when they said Aberdeen signed Rooney. Adam Rooney is


exactly what we need. The best season we've had for a long, long


time. I'll take second and The Cup Final. Come on!


Caught there by Shaun Hutchinson. Some distress.


The referee deems this one to be a free kick. Looks like Hutchinson got


something of the ball but plenty of the man too. A yellow card shown by


the referee. Ryan Jack certainly felt the full force of that. His


game is over. Peter Pawlett comes on to replace him.


He almost made the most of that free kick. Inches too high.


Jaymy Langfield had to react -- Jamie Langfield had to react


swiftly. Robson is not far from finding the


goal. A good save from Gunnar Nielson.


This was swerving and it had a lot of power behind it from Jonny Hayes.


Parried by the keeper though. McManus! Straight after the


interval, a powerful Steve McManus header gives Motherwell the


breakthrough. This came off the head of McManus


then off the face of Sutton, who didn't know anything about it.


Luckily for them Lasley was on hand. Shaughnessy knock today back to him


again. -- knocked it back to him again. Motherwell had bodies on the


line. McManus was there.


Again, the fullback denied the equaliser.


He didn't catch that right at all. Aberdeen pressing and pressing for


the equaliser. There's Adam Rooney! The debutante


draws Aberdeen level. Paul Lawson robbed of possession by McGinn.


Rooney is onside as McGinn hits it. Too hot for Nielson to handle.


Aberdeen right back in this match. A good ball across goal. And John


Sutton and France Frantz combine -- Zaine Francis-Angol, difficult to


see who got the touch there. They're back in front.


Aberdeen must have thought they'd done the hard work getting back


level. They find themselves behind again, perhaps not for long. Rooney


should have scored. Anxious times for Aberdeen, into


injury time. It's bundled over the line and


Aberdeen do have a second equaliser. Surely now the points - oh, a hand


used there by Anderson. That's what the claims are for. But the referee


hasn't seen it. It's surely a point for Aberdeen. I


thought Aberdeen, at times, second half were terrific. They deserved


the point. It's sore to lose it so late and sore that it's a handball


by Anderson. Unfortunately, the referee's not been in a good enough


position to see it. Really disappointed with the challenge. It


was an awful challenge. There has been a touch on the ball by the


defender, but it's only a challenge that's going to hurt somebody. It


was a terrible decision to not give him a red card. I'm disappointed


with it. Let's start with that, Shaun Hutchinson with a tackle on


Ryan Jack. He thought it was a red card. Was it that bad? I didn't


think it was. I think he's at the edge of the box. You would expect a


tackle. He's come a long way. He has thrown himself, but he's not


particularly high. He catches Ryan Jack. The injury is maybe more down


to the fall than anything else. If you see here, he gets a tiny bit of


the ball, but I think that will be very hard to give a red card for


that. He's not going with two feet. I don't think he's particularly out


of control. He has a focus on winning the ball. Hip injury, going


for a scan tomorrow. Pat, where do we start with the Anderson hand of


God or whatever it was? Yeah, I don't think there's any great


argument. It has his hand that put it in. We can kind of show that


here. This was flagged up to me, Cowell it attack by Anderson here.


Watch this tackle here, see if you tackle like that with a punch and a


kick anywhere else in the field, you're getting a yellow card. Now to


be fair, the referee's not seen it. I applaud Anderson to some degree to


do everything to get in. There it's the last minute. But it was a


handball. It was a foul. Surprised there was no whistle from


the re? I think it -- ref? I think Russell has done everything, put


everything in the net which he essentially did. Again, I'm not sure


what view the referee had, but it happened so quickly. I can


understand Stuart's frustration. A lot of excitement amongst Aberdeen


fans. But Rooney, penalty-box predator. We see that here. Every


time he goes, he gets between the two defenders all the time. We were


chatting about this before. But he heads for the goals between the


post. He's not going to get there, he gets out and gets half a chance.


Every time the ball is into the box, look where he is. He's right on the


penalty spot. If I ball drops to him, he'll either score or he will


have a great chance of scoring. You know what, that's brilliant


striking. It's the simplest thing in the world. He's always between


defenders. He's not trying to get across the front of the defender. He


will be disappointed he doesn't score there. He seems to find the


wee pockets of space. It's one thing having seen Aberdeen this season,


they've lacked that. They have great wide players and create chances. He


will turn out to be an excellent signing. Was a real jewel yesterday


between the two best sides in Scotland, apart from Celtic, of


course. And between the two managers as well, McCall and McInnes, doing


great things at their clubs. Who is going to win out of that? I would be


surprise today Aberdeen tonight -- surprised if Aberdeen don't finish


second. I think their midfield is very strong with Robson and Flood.


With Hayes again, they have options across the midfield four/five, the


way he plays. I think that they'll have that a wee bit too much in the


second half of the season. Thanks very much. Next to the form team of


2014, Ross County, three wins and a draw so far this year, plus half a


team of enough players. As for Hearts, same old youngsters week in,


week out, being sucked inevitably into the championship, it would


seem. The same 11 are named from last


week. Songo'o in trouble in the opening


few seconds of the match. Shaky sfrart Ross County.


-- start from Ross County. He didn't have the Midas Touch that


he needed there. Good start from Hearts.


A good ball in! Just too much on it from Richie Brittain.


He was stealing in at the back post looking for a touch.


Play on says the referee. The post rescues County.


It came bouncing off the wood work from Smith.


Side net. This has come off Michael Fraser. The keeper came out, block


today from Carrick. -- blocked it from Carrick.


The big striker has made an impact for Adams since arriving at the


club. Gary Locke must be happy with what


he's seen so far, generally, in the game.


That got a flick through to Paterson. Hearts have the lead! As


the corner was swept in, McKay got a touch on. Paterson had the easiest


task of knocking it into what was an empty net. Where was the defence?


The referee wasn't happy with the challenge here by McGowan. He was on


the stretch. It is a free kick. It's headed into the net by Songo'o!


It's 1-16789 -- 1-1. It's the man on loan from Blackburn Rovers, who


drags County right back into this one.


Songo'o again! He levelled things in the first half and he has stung the


palms of McDonald in the second. Paterson battling for it in the


midfield area. It's the Hearts man who emerged with it. They have an


opportunity here, headed over, though.


Another opportunity for Hearts. There's been a vibrancy about the


visitors this afternoon. Robinson lashes in! The Hearts elead


is restored and -- hearts' lead is restored. 2-1 to the visitors.


If Hearts win this game, he will go into positive points for the season.


It's a big if at the moment. Ross County unbeaten since the turn


of the year, four matches they've played, looking at defeat here,


though. Hearts would go up to two points at


the bottom of the Premiership table. Fraser comes to meet him and does


enough. He waited too long, the Hearts left back.


Good run from him, though. Today's a game we should be winning


with the calibre of player we have in the side. We haven't done that


today. Too many of us had an off game. I can't be too critical on


them because they've been on a fabulous run since the new year. All


season you look at the league table and you're minus, the fact that


we're on two points is great. We'll not get carried away, it's only one


win. But I thought it was a great performance and a great result for


us. I think every game is very important that we show an


appreciation to the fans. If it wasn't for them, we wouldn't be


standing here right now. Undoubtedly the shock result of the


day, huge psychological boost for Hearts, in positive points finally.


Will they stay up? No. It's harsh, that's nothing against the Hearts


players or fans. I think the spirit has been unbelievable. It's shown


there. It's great to see the coming together between the players and


their fans there. Just even the fans when they were at the derby game


Gwens Hibs, the noise was incredible. They've stuck by the


team. Even that far behind. If there was anything given out for attitude,


they would be right up there. I think they've been fantastic for the


vast majority, even when they've not been winning, they've actually been


putting everything in. You can see how much it meant to them when that


shot hit the back of the net. It's a good finish. He gets it down early


and hits quickly. You see the reaction of all the players, the


young players that are losing a lot of games. It's difficult for them.


Hopefully it will give them an impetus. Strange sin cross Iity --


syncrhronicity about that game. Hearts were on a downer before, but


yesterday's win is even more meaningful. Yes, I think so. Maybe


they've had a few, felt hard done by in recent weeks. I know some


decisions they have felt have gone against them. That gives them


something, the three points, those players will be delighted with going


into training tomorrow looking forward to the League Cup sellily


final -- semifinal. That neatly leads us on to an interesting week


for Hearts. They have a mid-week game against St Mirren. Then next


weekend, the League Cup semifinals against Inverness Cally Thistle,


they have a chance. They're at Easter Road again. Earlier this


season, they will have Ryan Stephenson back for the semifinal.


He can be a big player, as we can see. Yeah, he gets these lucky goals


now and again! Fantastic goal. Stranger things have happened.


They've got a chance of winning the cup. Wigan last year, actually


winning the cup but going down. These things can happen. And the


fact that Celtic are no longer in the cup. What an incredible season


for them, they could go down and win a trophy, which would be


extraordinary. The fact is they beat Inverness Cally Thistle before at


Easter Road, League Cup semifinals as well, there is that chance of a


good omen at least. Yeah, there's a few omens there. They go into the


game, Inverness not maybe in the best of form either. I think that it


will be a game that Hearts will look forward to and are well capable of


causing the upset. That leads us into promoting the plethora of great


football coverage coming your way on the BBC very soon. On Sunday next


weekend: Just the one win in the last six


games for Inverness Cally Thistle manager John Hughes. He took a


Kilmarnock team desperate to climb away from the play-off place.


Kilmarnock looking for a quicker start than last week at Partick


Thistle. Murihead, great effort. Crashing


back off the post. It took a deflection en route.


A save by Brill. Good build-up play from them.


There's Ashcroft! Kilmarnock find a breakthrough, 16 minutes in. Fine


header by the young defender. He adjusted well to get on the end of


that free kick from Clingan. His first goal of the season.


An interested spectator there. Alexei Eremenko in the directors


box. Oh, Billy McKay, you'd expect him to


finish that effort. He's had 18 goals so far this campaign. That


surely should have been 19. Alan Johnston encouraged by his


side's start to this game. Back off the other post this time!


Again, it was a deflection that took it onto it.


Fine effort. Terrific save by Samson. He's been


in outstanding form this season. That's another great stop.


Kris Boyd! Kilmarnock 2-0 in front. Another excellent finish there by


the Scottish striker. It's his 13th goal of the season. It's his 180th


league goal in Scottish football. Terrific link-up play from Murihead


to find Boyd. It just dips over the bar. Cally


Thistle getting closer. You were waiting for the net to


bulge there from Kris Boyd. That should have been his second of the


afternoon. He skied it. It's Ashcroft to the rescue for


Kilmarnock. Billy McKay couldn't get newspaper purchase on -- enough


purchase on that effort. really well.


13th goal of the season for Kris Boyd, what more can we say about


him. I get the impression that the more you see of Boyd, the older he


gets, the more impressed you get by him. I thought you were going to


say, the older he gets the younger he looks. Or the younger he plays!


Look at this. First of all very good tackle by Murihead. But this is a


normal move, go behind. Don't run between them. Because you don't


think of that. He does, and he takes his time when he gets there, he


doesn't panic. Have a look at this. This is the pace of Boyd here. There


he is zooming across there. He's completely reborn. Kilmarnock are


five wins in nine games. Each of those games, Boyd has scored. That


hammers home how important he is. He's vital. I think his link-up play


has been very good as well. It's the variety of goals. The chip there


that we saw. That's a nice little effort where he just diverts it on


tarring E the header -- target. A great header against Hearts.


Speculation linking him with a move to Blackpool, possibly, it's going


to be a sweaty last week of the transfer window? It's got to be.


Because if you're goal scoring, teams in desperation, they will do


anything to get a goal scorer, because they think it will get them


out. A lot of tomorrow are looking at him now -- a lot of them are


looking at him now. Somebody's switched a light in his head. His


physique is better and his attitude is spot on. It would be no surprise


if someone tries to get him. Another interesting character turned up at


Rugby Park for halftime. Under that cap, Alexei Eremenko, you might


remember from a couple of seasons back. Talented Finnish international


and all the talk is he might sign again. What a difference would he


make to the side? Well, we see his goals here. But in fact it's his


creativity. If he has Boydy beside him that could be fantastic. That


would be good enough to get them staying in the SPFL. That's why


they're trying to get him. Not only a goal scorer, creator, he's that


wee bit of flair that anyone would like to have. Let's talk about John


Hughes. Just the one win in seven games now for him. Is he struggling


adapt his style to what was already different style that Inverness play,


but a successful style. Possibly. There was such a familiarity there


between Terry and Morris and the players. John has to go in now and


adapt his personality and how he wants to play on that squad. If you


look at the chances yesterday rkts I saw them -- yesterday, I saw them


against Aberdeen and they played very well. They played great


football on the counterattack. Yesterday, Billy McKay on another


day would have scored a hat-trick. It could have been a different


result. I don't think alarm bells are ringing. But there's a bit of


time for the players to get to know John. There have been positives in


their performances. . It might be late on a Sunday evening, but the


Premiership weekend is still not over. Tomorrow night, Dundee United


host St Johnstone. COMMENTATOR: Brilliant play from


Dundee United. Live commentary tonight as St Johnstone and Dundee


United go head to head. It's a key match for both these teams.


St Johnstone can leapfrog United with a win. United can leapfrog


Inverness if they win. Full highlights on the BBC Sport website


from midnight on Monday. We're standing up again tonight, it really


is all change. Let's talk St Mirren versus Partick Thistle, a tuftle


this in the scramble -- tussle this in the scramble to avoid a play-off


place. A familiar-looking line up on the whole, top goal scorer Stephen


Thompson leading the line. As for Partick Thistle, they won here in


August. The scorers that day were Higgins and Forbes.


SMIT After 26 minutes his game was over, after this challenge by


Naismith. Higginbotham requiring six stitches in a leg wound. The yellow


card shown to the defenderment -- defender.


Former Scotland international again on duty, saving from McGowan.


He came close early on in the second half.


Beating the keeper but rebounding off the post.


The rebound also cleared by the Thistle defence.


Taylor-Sinclair came close to become the hero.


His long-range effort hit the top of the cross-bar.


Neither side able to make the breakthrough. Today was pleasing.


It's been a wee while since we've kept a clean sheet. I'm delighted


for the back four and the whole group. I thought when we were asked


to defend today, we did it very well. I thought it went either way.


The second half was a lottery. It was end to end. We hit the wood


work, they hit the wood work. I thought we were better in the first


half. 0-0, not a game to live long in the memory. Let's talk about the


bottom of the Premiership table. The scramble for the play-off place.


Seventh to 11th place, just seven points separates those sides. Do you


think Hibs can be sucked into that scramble for that play-off place?


I'd be surprise today they are. I think Terry's made a difference


there. The Hibs' performance, work read, I can't see them being dragged


in there. The other four teams, it will be interesting, particularly


when they play each other. When they play each other, it will be huge.


For me, if I look at it now, I'm beginning to think, this next few


days will be so important. Who's bought by whom. Does Michael come


in? Does Boyd go. If they keep them, can they stay up? We didn't think


anyone would come in in this window. Partick Thistle in the second bottom


spot at the moment. Are they favourites to stay there? Oddly


enough, I do at the moment. These guys have been brought in or on loan


or whatever, I think that's the big difference there. I will be brutally


honest, if I'd have -- you'd have asked me a few months ago, I would


have said St St Mirren. Very much. Let's look at the Scottish


Premiership table: That's all we have time for tonight.


Hope you like the home improvements here. It's going to be a busy studio


over the next few weeks. Lots of football coming your way on the BBC.


From now, from all of us here at Sportscene, good night.


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