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Summary

  1. Referee McLean turns down strong Dons penalty claim
  2. Jonny Hayes' cracker gives Aberdeen hope
  3. Celtic score three times in first 11 minutes
  4. Boyata, Armstrong and Griffiths with the goals
  5. Murray, Kuati and Spittal score for Dundee United
  6. Premiership play-off: FT Dundee United 3-0 Morton (agg 5-1)

Live Reporting

By Keir Murray

All times stated are UK

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Until tomorrow...

Thanks very much for joining us at BBC Scotland this evening. Congratulations to Celtic on reaching 100 Premiership points and well done too to the Dons for helping create such a pulsating match. Morton's season is over after losing 5-1 on aggregate to Dundee United and you imagine whoever finishes 11th in the Premiership won't fancy taking on Falkirk or United in the Premiership final. Great games to come before the season is over. Good night.

McKinnon happy with Terrors' form

FT Dundee United 3-0 Morton (agg 5-1)

Dundee United manager Ray McKinnon: "It was a pretty even first half but in the second half the guys were excellent. They linked the play very well. Simon Murray scored a great goal on Tuesday as well. Our form has been good. They got their reward tonight. I thought we played some really good football. I was amazed when I saw that (the Watu Koate goal). The goal was quite stunning! Falkirk are a good side, I expect a very tough game."

'You have to be clinical'

FT Dundee United 3-0 Morton (agg 5-1)

Morton manager Jim Duffy: "It's a very unfair scoreline. In both games we have dominated the first half but the game is about 90 minutes. You've got to be clinical and that's what we didn't show in the opposition penalty box. You've got to hurt the opposition when you're controlling the game and Dundee United have punished us. That wee bit extra quality in certain areas and physicality eventually made them comprehensive winners but I do believe the scoreline was harsh."

Miller: Rodgers 'taken aback' by Dons

FT Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

BBC Scotland football pundit Willie Miller: "Are you allowed to disagree with Brendan Rodgers? I don't think his team defended particularly well. I think he's a little bit disingenuous to Aberdeen because I thought at times Aberdeen passed it well. OK, I understand what he's saying about the long ball but when they got the second ball they got it in to wide areas and got good crosses into the box as well. Listening to his interview, it sounded as though all Aberdeen did was boot the ball forward and somehow it miraculously got into the wide areas and then they played crosses into the box. There was a lot more guile than that. I think he sounded a wee bit taken aback by the Aberdeen performance there. I might be wrong. I'm a huge fan of Brendan Rodgers but I think he could have been a little bit more generous to Aberdeen and the performance they put in."

Party time

FT Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

The Celtic players whip their fans into a frenzy after reaching 100 points in the Premiership
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The Celtic players whip their fans into a frenzy after reaching 100 points in the Premiership

'Long-ball Aberdeen'

FT Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers: "I thought we started the first 20 minutes exceptionally, the speed in our game, and we got three fantastic goals. We had to really stand up to the game tonight. Aberdeen are a direct team, everything is a long ball, in the air. You're having to deal with a lot of long-ball football. Coming to Pittodrie is never easy. All in all it was an outstanding defensive performance, not one of our better football performances, but sometimes it is very difficult to do that when a team is constantly going long with it. They don't really construct the game and build it. It's a long ball forward and get the crosses into the box. It's a different way from how we play the game. We've played Aberdeen four times and we've won four times and they've all been difficult games for us. It will be a totally different game (at Hampden)."

'We carried the fight'

FT Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes: "It was bewildering at the start. It was all hands to the deck. Jonny (Hayes) gave us inspiration. He saved us from going under. We carried the fight. They needed to know we were taking them on, and we took them on. But for that 10 minutes, we could have won the game. As bizarre as it sounds, that you can't give Celtic a three-goal start and expect to get anything, we had chance after chance and we could have. The penalty needed a big referee to make that decision. It was a stonewall penalty. There are acceptable ways of losing and tonight was one of them. I think tonight's game will make us more confident going into the final, even though we've lost. The cup final is the only thing that matters now. Tonight's result was disappointing; tonight's performance was exactly what I was looking for."

Mind the gap

FT Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Willie Miller tells Radio Scotland listeners: "You've got to look at the quality that Celtic have set and it is very hard to close that gap. Aberdeen have made a good fist of it."

In the Pittodrie directors' box

FT Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Rod Stewart, you imagine, will go to bed tonight dreaming that he got a tap on the shoulder from the man behind him at the game this evening. 

"Rod, are you fit?" Scotland manager Gordon Strachan will have asked the great man of pop.

"Yes, boss."

"Right, you're in the squad for the England game. We need a hero, Rod. I've had my eye on you for a while. You can do a job for us, old timer..." 

Gordon Strachan and Rod Stewart were in the directors' box at Pittodrie
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Coming up...

Now, if you can keep your phone, tablet or PC switched on for a while longer, we'll bring you post-match reaction from Derek McInnes, Brendan Rodgers, Ray McKinnon and Jim Duffy. Plus some photies of the action too. It will be worth it, I promise.

Morton run themselves into the ground

FT Dundee United 3-0 Morton (agg 5-1)

BBC Scotland football pundit Derek Ferguson: "Morton gave everything for Jim Duffy but they ran out of legs. At the end of the day it was all about quality - Kuate's goal was incredible."

Cheers all round

FT Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Both sets of fans applaud the players loudly, for this was a really entertaining match. If every game was as good as this, you couldn't find an excuse for not going along. Kieran Tierney and Erik Sviatchenko are among the Celtic players to gift their jerseys to supporters. Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers takes to the pitch to show his appreciation to the travelling fans.

FULL-TIME Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Martin Dowden

BBC Sport Scotland at Pittodrie

It was a remarkable contest. Celtic won 3-1 but were severely tested after surging three clear early on.

Aberdeen's response was very impressive but you can't expect to beat Celtic if you're three goals down. They'll have to be tighter when they meet again at Hampden Park.

However, Derek McInnes will be thrilled that they stood tall, didn't capitulate and really gave their opponents something to consider.

Celtic march on, though, and after a tough examination they still produced another victory. They're simply relentless.

Hear hear, Willie

Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

BBC Scotland football pundit Willie Miller: "It's been a great game of football. I've enjoyed just about every second of it. This is a very good Celtic side, though they haven't had it all their own way."

When a gap becomes a chasm

Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

With Celtic about to bank three more points, taking their tally to a century for the current campaign with two games to go, consider this: they are now 30 points ahead of Aberdeen in second place in the Premiership.

FULL-TIME Dundee United 3-0 Morton (agg 5-1)

The Terrors are through to face Falkirk over two legs in the Premiership semi-final, the winner of which will play the team that finishes 11th in the top flight.

YELLOW CARD

Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Celtic winger Scott Sinclair is tripped just outside the Dons box by Shay Logan, who cannot argue with Steven McLean's decision to scribble his name in his wee book.

Pause for thought

Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

"Brendan Rodgers has yet to see his team lose to a Scottish club," Liam McLeod reminds listeners to BBC Radio Scotland's Sportsound. When you stop to think about it, in mid-May, that is quite something.

CLOSE!

Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Somehow managing to keep his eye on the dropping ball without losing his mind, as it was headed hither and thither, Niall McGinn volleys a dipping effort over the Celtic crossbar. That had everything, that moment - the floodlights, the haar, desperate headers, coloured boots, a sweet strike, the goalie in a panic, the player with his head in his hands, the fans in a mass "ooooooh". Marvellous.

GOAL Dundee United 3-0 Morton (agg 5-1) (Spittal)

Blair Spittal turns in Simon Murray's cut-back to put the tie beyond doubt.

Better with Bitton?

Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Martin Dowden

BBC Sport Scotland at Pittodrie

He's not featured often but Nir Bitton, who came on for Tom Rogic, has given Celtic a touch more composure. He's slowed things down and Celtic have managed to string a few passes together which hasn't happened often in this second half.

They've taken the sting out of it and that clock is beginning to tick beyond Aberdeen's reach.

It looks like Celtic will have 100 league points in the bag after this.

YELLOW CARD

Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Leigh Griffiths, like a child snapping the patience of a parent, is booked for strolling off the pitch oh-so-sloooowly. He even stopped to roll down his socks. His replacement, James Forrest, is the opposite, rushing in to the fray.

The hero and the villain

Dundee United 2-0 Morton (4-1 agg)

Now, if only Kudus Oyenuga had headed Morton level, then perhaps Wato Kuate would never have had the chance, a few moments later, to blast United, surely, into the Premiership play-off against Falkirk. That's football.

Dundee United v Morton
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Nosebleed territory

Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Kenny McLean really ought to have scored after breaking into the left side of the Celtic box. But what does he do? Why, with the angle narrowing, he blazes a shot high over the bar. I think we've seen him do that before, for all his evident class.

Murray mania

Dundee United 2-0 Morton (4-1 agg)

Simon Murray celebrates putting the Terrors in front
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Simon Murray celebrates putting the Terrors in front

GOAL Dundee United 2-0 Morton (agg 4-1) (Kuate)

Kenny Crawford

BBC Sport Scotland at Tannadice

It's an outstanding strike from 30 yards by Wato Kuate to surely put this tie beyond Morton.

The Cameroon-born Portuguese midfielder bent it left-footed into the top corner.

Dons undimmed

Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Aberdeen show the fight that has taken them to second in the table. Kenny McLean get on the end of a corner and nods the ball down into the six-yard box, but it's Jozo Simunovic who is first to react and Celtic retain their two-goal cushion.

One for the scrapbook (or digital equivalent)

Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Morton's stand-in Jamie McGowan makes a save
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Morton's stand-in Jamie McGowan makes an eye-catching save

Oyenuga's big chance

Dundee United 1-0 Morton (3-1 agg)

Kenny Crawford

BBC Sport Scotland at Tannadice

Kudus Oyenuga blows a chance to bring Morton back into the tie by heading over from Aidan Nesbitt's cross.

He should have got it on target at least.

The joy football can bring

Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Celtic fans were in raptures at the start of this match
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Celtic fans were in raptures at the start of this match

Big decision

Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Martin Dowden

BBC Sport Scotland at Pittodrie

Aberdeen remain on the front foot and, for a side that's trailing 3-1, they look very strong.

They'll feel they should've had what did look a penalty. Graeme Shinnie broke into the box, nicked the ball before Craig Gordon whose follow through took Shinnie out. It looked a fairly clear-cut spot-kick.

It's a massive decision as that would have really put the outcome of this game in doubt had it been awarded.

The introduction of Nir Bitton for Tom Rogic is instructive. Celtic need to control the midfield better.

PENALTY APPEAL

Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Graeme Shinnie dashes into the Celtic box to collect a pass and is sent crashing to the ground by a streak of fluorescence. Big Craig Gordon flattens the Dons skipper, who got to the ball just too late. The home fans are incredulous. Steven McLean got that one wrong, but it was a tough call to make. We're talking milliseconds of a difference between a great goal-saving challenge and a stick-on penalty. It was the latter.

GOAL Dundee United 1-0 Morton (agg 3-1) (Murray)

Kenny Crawford

BBC Sport Scotland at Tannadice

Relief around Tannadice for the home support as Simon Murray side-foots into the back of the net from six yards after Morton fail to clear Stewart Murdoch's cross properly.

That's 16 goals this season for Murray.

In the balance, even at 3-1?

Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

As Andy Considine rather rashly blooters a left-foot shot wide of Craig Gordon's goal, Willie Miller, on the wireless, tells listeners: "The outcome of this game is still not sure because Aberdeen have put in a lot of work, even at the start of the second half."

KICK-OFF

Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

The haar is lurking over the old stadium as the second half begins.

Imagine missing that start...

HT Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

I can't help wondering about the fans who missed the first 11 minutes of the game. A pie? A pint? A moment's micturition? A missed bus? Whatever the cause, I suspect it will never be repeated. "Aye, I was there that night at Pittodrie..."

Celtic flying out the blocks

HT: Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Game of the season for Pat

HT Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Pat Bonner calls it. "For me, it's been the best game I've seen this year," he states on BBC Radio Scotland.

A matter of time for the Terrors?

HT Dundee United 0-0 Morton (agg 2-1)

BBC Scotland football pundit Derek Ferguson: "Morton won't lie down, they won't go out with a whimper. They are certainly making a game of it but with the quality United have you feel they are going to take one of these chances."

Boyata's chance

HT Aberdeen 1-3 Celtic

Apologies for not keeping up with play at the end of the first half! I omitted a diving header by Dedryck Boyata which went fractionally wide of the Dons goal. It was one of those ones where you're left wondering why the player didn't slide in and score with his boot. He had to stoop so far he almost helped himself to a mouthful of Todders turf.