Scottish Premiership
Celtic4St Mirren1

Celtic 4-1 St Mirren

  • Celtic win to go six points clear
  • Captain Scott Brown scores twice
  • St Mirren lose first game since Tommy Craig's sacking
  • Gary Teale in caretaker charge of the Buddies

Celtic secured their eighth consecutive league win and established a six-point lead at the top of the Premiership with a comfortable win against St Mirren.

Scott Brown bagged a double, either side of James Forrest's goal, after Sean Kelly had hauled St Mirren level.

And Anthony Stokes netted after the break with a fine left-foot finish.

Celtic had plenty more chances to add to their lead against caretaker boss Gary Teale's Buddies, who remain a point adrift at the foot of the table.

John Guidetti and substitute Stefan Scepovic were particularly wasteful but Ronny Deila's side now enjoy a six-point cushion over second-placed Inverness.

St Mirren were playing their first match under Teale following the sacking of Tommy Craig, but their poor form continues.

Celtic welcomed captain Brown back into the starting XI but Kris Commons, whose contract situation has been the subject of much talk this week, had to settle for a place on the bench.

Saturday's results ensured the contest pitched top against bottom but the Buddies should have cashed in on a slack pass from Forrest in the opening seconds.

John McGinn broke on the left and delivered to Kenny McLean, but he missed his kick from 18 yards with no Celtic player near him.

St Mirren caretaker manager Gary Teale
Player-coach Teale (far left) took charge of the Buddies for the first time

Teale's troops were made to pay for that miss as Brown fired the hosts into the lead. Stokes picked out his captain from the left and the midfielder smashed low into the net from the edge of the box.

St Mirren thought they had levelled when Forrest again gifted possession to McGinn and he again played in McLean. This time the midfielder converted, but the offside flag was up.

The Paisley side's celebrations were only delayed, though, as Kelly finished from close range after Marc McAusland knocked the ball across goal from a long diagonal.

Celtic were soon in front again and it was Forrest who made amends for some of his earlier errors. Guidetti held the ball up brilliantly in the box and shifted it on to Forrest, who lashed home from a tight angle.

That was the confidence boost Forrest required and he set up the third seconds later, cutting the ball back to Brown after a fine run, and the captain side-footed it beyond Mark Ridgers from a similar range to his first goal.

Nir Bitton almost made it four with a glancing header but Ridgers parried clear, and Stefan Johansen should have done better than drag the ball wide from close range after being played in by Guidetti.

The Swedish striker then passed up a golden chance of his own, firing straight at Ridgers from eight yards.

The second half started as the first finished, with Celtic threatening through Guidetti, but his looping volley went over.

Scepovic almost caught out Ridgers after coming on for Guidetti, smashing a looping half-volley goalwards from 25 yards that the keeper just managed to reach.

Celtic needed no help in creating chances but St Mirren offered it anyway as McAusland was caught in possession just outside his own box and Johansen set up Stokes to drill the fourth into the net.

Scepovic passed up a glaring chance when he poked wide following great work from fellow substitute Callum McGregor to send him one-on-one with Ridgers.

And, after St Mirren's McLean had another swipe at fresh air with the goal at his mercy, Scepovic fired another shot wide after being sent clean through.

The Serbia international then hit a post after a delightful cross from Emilio Izaguirre. The striker was having one of those days and the hosts had to be content with four goals.

Scott Brown (far left) scores for Celtic against St Mirren
Captain Brown opened the scoring on his return to the Celtic side
Sean Kelly scores for St Mirren against Celtic
Kelly's goal briefly brought St Mirren back level
Scott Brown, Stefan Johansen and John Guidetti
Brown (left) scored his second after Forrest had regained the lead for the hosts
Stefan Johansen and Anthony Stokes
Stokes (right) scored Celtic's fourth of the day after the interval

Line-ups

Celtic

  • 26Gordon
  • 2Matthews
  • 4Ambrose
  • 5van Dijk
  • 3Izaguirre
  • 8Brown
  • 6BittonSubstituted forHendersonat 69'minutes
  • 49ForrestSubstituted forMcGregorat 45'minutes
  • 25Johansen
  • 10Stokes
  • 9GuidettiSubstituted forScepovicat 59'minutes

Substitutes

  • 12Scepovic
  • 15Commons
  • 24Zaluska
  • 28Griffiths
  • 41Fisher
  • 42McGregor
  • 53Henderson

St Mirren

  • 12Ridgers
  • 2Naismith
  • 4McAusland
  • 22Tesselaar
  • 3Kelly
  • 14ReillySubstituted forMarwoodat 71'minutes
  • 13OsbourneSubstituted forMallanat 83'minutes
  • 6Goodwin
  • 8McLean
  • 7McGinn
  • 9ThompsonSubstituted forBallat 75'minutes

Substitutes

  • 10Marwood
  • 16Ball
  • 17Drury
  • 28Kello
  • 29Caldwell
  • 31Mallan
  • 34Morgan
Referee:
Craig Thomson
Attendance:
44,827

Match Stats

Home TeamCelticAway TeamSt Mirren
Possession
Home58%
Away42%
Shots
Home22
Away4
Shots on Target
Home13
Away1
Corners
Home8
Away2
Fouls
Home14
Away8

Live Text

Match ends, Celtic 4, St. Mirren 1.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Celtic 4, St. Mirren 1.

Foul by Emilio Izaguirre (Celtic).

Kenny McLean (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Stefan Scepovic (Celtic) hits the left post with a left footed shot from the right side of the six yard box.

Corner, Celtic. Conceded by Sean Kelly.

Attempt missed. Stefan Scepovic (Celtic) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left.

Attempt missed. John McGinn (St. Mirren) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the right.

Attempt missed. Jim Goodwin (St. Mirren) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

Dangerous play by Scott Brown (Celtic).

Jim Goodwin (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, St. Mirren. Stephen Mallan replaces Isaac Osbourne.

Attempt missed. Virgil van Dijk (Celtic) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right.

Attempt saved. Scott Brown (Celtic) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Callum McGregor (Celtic) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by John McGinn (St. Mirren).

Substitution

Substitution, St. Mirren. Callum Ball replaces Steven Thompson.

Attempt missed. Stefan Scepovic (Celtic) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right.

Substitution

Substitution, St. Mirren. James Marwood replaces Thomas Reilly.

Corner, St. Mirren. Conceded by Virgil van Dijk.

Substitution

Substitution, Celtic. Liam Henderson replaces Nir Bitton.

Hand ball by Scott Brown (Celtic).

Goal!

Goal! Celtic 4, St. Mirren 1. Anthony Stokes (Celtic) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Stefan Johansen.

Foul by Virgil van Dijk (Celtic).

Jim Goodwin (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Stefan Johansen (Celtic).

Jim Goodwin (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Scott Brown (Celtic).

John McGinn (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt saved. Stefan Scepovic (Celtic) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Substitution

Substitution, Celtic. Stefan Scepovic replaces John Guidetti because of an injury.

Attempt saved. Stefan Johansen (Celtic) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Attempt missed. Anthony Stokes (Celtic) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses the top right corner from a direct free kick.

John Guidetti (Celtic) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Jeroen Tesselaar (St. Mirren).

Foul by Callum McGregor (Celtic).

Jim Goodwin (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt saved. Emilio Izaguirre (Celtic) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is saved in the centre of the goal.

Emilio Izaguirre (Celtic) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Isaac Osbourne (St. Mirren).

goal

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Sunday 14th December 2014

View all Scottish Premiership results

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic16122233102338
2Inverness CT1610242417732
3Dundee Utd1610152819931
4Aberdeen1610152517831
5Hamilton1693429181130
6St Johnstone167271417-323
7Kilmarnock166371721-421
8Dundee165562121020
9Partick Thistle165472219319
10Motherwell1632111127-1611
11Ross County1623111736-199
12St Mirren1622121130-198
View full Scottish Premiership table

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