• SPL round-up

Celtic win but title wait goes on

ESPN staff
April 6, 2013
© PA Photos

Celtic eased to a 3-0 win over Hibernian, but they will have to wait to clinch a 44th league title as Motherwell grabbed a late point at home to St Mirren to keep the race alive, albeit mathematically.

Kris Commons was the stat turn for Celtic with goals either side of half-time, while Mikael Lustig added a third just past the hour to sink Hibernian.

Midfielder Commons, who shrugged off a nasty ankle injury to make the game, drove the home side into the lead in the 14th minute. For the second, Wanyama played the ball to the supporting Lustig and when his cut-back found the former Derby and Nottingham Forest player he turned smartly from seven yards out and knocked it low past the keeper. Lustig grabbed the third just after the hour mark.

Motherwell needed at least a point to keep themselves in with a chance of taking the title and a late goal from James McFadden rescued a point against St Mirren.

McFadden added to his collection of spectacular goals to rescue a deserved point for Motherwell and edge them closer to a European spot.

The Scotland international curled home a free-kick with five minutes left after St Mirren had come from behind to take the lead in this Clydesdale Bank Premier League match.

Conor Newton's long-range strike had cancelled out Michael Higdon's 23rd goal of the season and Lewis Guy struck in the 75th minute after Motherwell had come close on numerous occasions in the second half.

But McFadden the final say to ensure Motherwell finished the weekend as they started it - three points clear of Inverness in second place and eight points ahead of the chasing pack in the race for a Europa League slot.

A last-gasp winner from substitute Rory Boulding against Aberdeen secured the coveted final top-six spot for Dundee United - with a little help from their city rivals.

Defeat for Kilmarnock at the hands of Dundee, combined with the late strike at Tannadice, ensured United a place in the top half of the Scottish Premier League table beyond the split.

Killie had been in the driving seat to claim the top six berth, with United, the Dons and Hibernian also in contention at the start of the day.

The eventual outcome meant a disappointing end to Aberdeen boss Craig Brown's 36-year managerial career as he now steps aside for Derek McInnes to take over the reins at Pittodrie.

Kilmarnock saw their hopes of a place in the top six blown apart as Dundee came up with a 2-1 victory that spares them relegation from the top flight for at least another week.

Former Rugby Park playmaker Gary Harkins returned to Ayrshire for the first time since his move to Dens Park but made himself most unwelcome with a goal in either half.

Kris Boyd had levelled just four minutes before Harkins' decisive second to extend his record-breaking tally of SPL goals to 166, but just as they looked set to sneak through on goal difference, Boulding's last-gasp winner for Dundee United against Aberdeen saw the Tannadice men snatch Killie's place in the top half of the table.

Three goals in five minutes earned Hearts a 4-2 comeback win over Ross County.

The visitors had been leading 2-1 going into the last quarter of an hour with a double from Steffen Wohlfarth coming each side of Michael Ngoo's 49th minute equaliser. Substitute Jason Holt equalised for the hosts on 79 minutes before an Evangelos Oikonomou own goal gave them the lead 60 seconds later. Ngoo then completed the goal flurry in the 84th minute.

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