Celtic took a step closer to keeping the Scottish Premiership title as they edged to a utilize over relegation-threatened St Mirren in Paisley.
If Neil Lennon’s aspect beat Livingston on Saturday, Rangers would want at the least a point at Motherwell the next day to aid the title speed alive.
Timothy Weah’s header crashed off the bar and bounced in to originate the scoring – his fourth procedure since signing.
Olivier Ntcham had a penalty saved however Ryan Christie chanced on a gradual 2nd.
With Rangers beating Hearts at Ibrox, the gap at the cease remains at 13 facets with gorgeous six games left to play.
Defeats for Hamilton and Dundee recede St Mirren’s set of living unchanged in 2nd-backside as they wrestle to steer determined of the fall.
One hand on the title
St Mirren supervisor Oran Kearney made six adjustments from the weekend utilize over Dundee, his rationale being that his aspect desired to be animated if they were to situation off Celtic concerns. And they wanted that strength to scuttle the sport after falling within the aid of early.
Weah bought up highest to transfer the ball off the bar and it bounced down sooner than being clawed away by Vaclav Hladky. The St Mirren gamers were adamant it had no longer crossed the line, however referee Don Robertson became once effectively positioned and awarded the procedure.
Callum McGregor became once in inspired invent in midfield, at the centre of the entire lot for the guests. Minutes sooner than the procedure his through ball sent Kristoffer Ajer determined within the sphere, with the Norwegian defender blasting over. Then he picked out Oliver Burke who had gorgeous the goalkeeper to beat however horribly skewed his shot huge.
It became once one-come visitors and St Mirren wanted one thing to gentle a fuse below them. They bought it when James Kellermann became once penalised for handball within the sphere, awkwardly lacking a header and the ball hanging his flailing arm. His goalkeeper Hladky guessed as it will likely be to push away Ntcham’s arena-kick, sooner than the Frenchman lobbed the rebound off the bar.
It became once Celtic’s fifth penalty omit of the season, and saved the sport alive as the home aspect tried to toughen on gorgeous one utilize in 32 attempts against the league leaders.
Alternatively, Kearney would were inflamed at how with out concerns Burke became once ready to safe his shot away despite the honor of three defenders. Anton Ferdinand’s disaster in explicit became once half of-hearted. But Hladky all yet again bailed out a crew-mate by deflecting the disaster along with his legs.
St Mirren briefly threatened an equaliser. Cody Cooke picked up a free ball in midfield and hit a prolonged-vary shot that goalkeeper Scott Bain needed to be at corpulent-stretch for to push huge.
However the introductions of Christie and Odsonne Edouard breathed unusual lifestyles into Celtic, and the susceptible clipped in a 2nd procedure by using a minute deflection off a defender.
The game paused briefly with Hladky severely spooked by an missile thrown from the Celtic cease. When the sport restarted, Paul McGinn had a shot cleared off the line as St Mirren went forward with a vengeance, however it completely became once a short flurry with Celtic comfortably closing in on eight league titles in a row.
‘St Mirren had opportunities’ – prognosis
Frail Celtic goalkeeper Pat Bonner on BBC Sportsound
St Mirren will likely be upset because they’d opportunities. And or no longer it is far most important to utilize your opportunities. They got right here into the sport within the 2nd half of. Duckens Nazon will likely be upset after lacking a few gigantic possibilities.
‘Complacency crept in’ – response
St Mirren supervisor Oran Kearney:“You are making an are attempting and dwell within the sport for thus prolonged as possible. We had two or three factual possibilities when it became once 1-0. On nights like this, or no longer it is far most important to utilize them.
“We would personal loved to utilize one thing from the sport however to return out all even within the league is factual for us.”
Celtic supervisor Neil Lennon:“Somewhat little bit of complacency crept in. In opposition to any opposition or no longer it is consistently sophisticated when or no longer it is 1-0 however after the 2nd procedure we would possibly doubtless doubtless aloof down and aloof down.
“Alternatively or no longer it is one other step in the direction of the title. I became once tickled with the gamers that got right here on who all put in very solid performances.”