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Page last updated at 14:39 GMT, Saturday, 12 December 2009

Motherwell   2 - 3   Celtic

Georgios Samaras
Georgios Samaras opened the scoring for Celtic in the 14th minute

By Martin Conaghan

Celtic recorded their fourth straight win in a five-goal thriller against Motherwell at Fir Park.

A Georgios Samaras strike gave Celtic the lead before Lukas Jutkiewicz back-heeled in a 26th-minute equaliser.

Mark Reynolds converted a Tom Hateley free-kick on the stroke of half-time then Aiden McGeady levelled shortly after the break with a curling shot.

Barry Robson missed a penalty before sub Marc-Antoine Fortune's shot claimed the points with 11 minutes remaining.

The win puts Celtic two points clear at the top following an action-packed afternoon in Lanarkshire.

Tony Mowbray kept with the side that beat Aberdeen last week, with Samaras partnering Scott McDonald in attack, while Gary Caldwell partnered Glenn Loovens at the back.

Motherwell boss Jim Gannon made three changes, with Steve Jennings, Steven Meechan and Robert McHugh all coming in - while Giles Coke, John Sutton and Ross Forbes started on the bench.

Lukas Jutkiewicz (left) and Celtic's Landry N'Guemo battle for the ball
Celtic edged out Motherwell in a thrilling match at Fir Park

With the fog descending over Fir Park, Jutkiewicz cleared the air with an early effort from 20 yards out, but Loovens blocked.

Motherwell keeper John Ruddy deflected a Samaras shot off the bar after the Greece international struck from close range.

Celtic's opener arrived in the 14th minute from the boot of Samaras after the former Man City striker picked up a long ball from Landry N'Guemo and twisted around the Motherwell defence to fire in a superb shot from 12 yards out into the top corner of the net.

Moments later, McGeady forced Ruddy to parry a chipped shot and fired in with another low strike two minutes later.

With 25 minutes played, Jutkiewicz broke free inside the Celtic penalty area but lost out to a well-timed Loovens challenge.

The Englishman landed Motherwell's equaliser 60 seconds later after McHugh delivered a fine cross from the right for Jutkiewicz to back-heel past a hapless Artur Boruc.

Celtic remained composed as a Caldwell header inched past Ruddy's right-hand post just after the half-hour mark.

As half-time approached, Jamie Murphy gave the Celtic defence a scare with a blazing run into the penalty area, but Loovens and Caldwell cleared the danger.

Motherwell took the lead on the stroke of half-time when Hateley delivered a searching free-kick that was nodded down by Loovens for Reynolds to shoot past Boruc from six yards.

Celtic restored parity six minutes after the restart when Samaras sent a square ball to McGeady on the right-hand side of the Motherwell penalty area and the Republic of Ireland international curled in a superb shot past Ruddy.

Claims for a Celtic penalty were waved away by referee Charlie Richmond after Steven Jennings appeared to accidentally handle the ball.

Scott McDonald struck the Motherwell bar from a Danny Fox cross as the hour mark approached and a goalmouth scramble ended with a Samaras strike being deflected over.

Steven Saunders conceded a penalty in the 64th minute following a collision with Samaras, but Robson's spot-kick was parried by Ruddy to maintain the deadlock.

A McGeady volley inched wide with 20 minutes left as Celtic pushed for a lead and Jutkiewicz blasted a left-footed shot wide of Boruc's goal at the other end.

Samaras linked up with Robson in the 76th minute and looked certain to score but fired straight at Ruddy.

Substitute Fortune was on the pitch less than 60 seconds before he latched on to a Hinkel long ball and thundered in an unstoppable shot to put Celtic back in the driving seat.

With six minutes left, Ross Forbes delivered a low shot that drifted past Boruc's left-hand post then failed to test the Polish keeper with a long-range free-kick.

Fortune struck the Motherwell post with an angled shot in the final minute, but the points were already on the board for the Glasgow visitors.


Motherwell manager Jim Gannon:
"I'm really proud to be involved with such a good game. It was a great advert for the SPL.

"You can see the quality of Celtic's play, and you can see why they've had four wins in a row now, but my players certainly gave a good account of themselves and showed what they are about.

"It was good to see our young players give a good account of themselves against such a quality team.

"We were confident we would score and create chances, which we did.

"But - great credit to Celtic - they've got the quality, they've got the intensity from their experienced players to be able to really put you under a lot of pressure and it told in the end."

Celtic manager Tony Mowbray:
"It was a great football match with a lot of good play.

"From our perspective, we looked in total control of the football game in the first half, but we came in 2-1 down after shooting ourselves in the foot.

"But we got the job done, which is all-important at this stage - to keep picking up the points - and I think we warranted them.

"I think Marc Fortune has had a rough few months with his injury, but there's a lot of expectation on his shoulders.

"He can score goals at any level and I'm delighted for him."

Live text and stats

 

Saturday, 12 December 2009

Scottish Premier

Home Team Score Away Team Time
Motherwell 2-3 Celtic FT
(HT 2-1)
  • Jutkiewicz 26
  • Reynolds 45+1
  • Samaras 14
  • McGeady 52
  • Fortune 79

Motherwell

  • 21 Ruddy
  • 02 Moutaouakil
  • 03 Hammell
  • 04 Reynolds
  • 43 Saunders
  • 08 Jennings (Forbes 75)
  • 24 Hateley
  • 33 Meechan
  • 09 Jutkiewicz
  • 15 Murphy (Coke 61)
  • 35 McHugh (Pollock 68 yellow card)

Substitutes

  • 01 Fraser,
  • 05 Craigan,
  • 28 Hutchinson,
  • 06 Coke,
  • 46 Pollock,
  • 11 Sutton,
  • 27 Forbes

Celtic

  • 01 Boruc
  • 02 Hinkel
  • 05 Caldwell
  • 11 Fox (Fortune 78)
  • 22 Loovens
  • 06 N'Guemo
  • 17 Crosas
  • 19 Robson yellow card
  • 46 McGeady yellow card (Caddis 90+3)
  • 07 McDonald
  • 09 Samaras

Substitutes

  • 24 Zaluska,
  • 03 Naylor,
  • 52 Caddis,
  • 14 McGinn,
  • 27 Zhi,
  • 36 Carey,
  • 10 Fortune
Ref: RichmondAtt: 7,807
MOTHERWELL
CELTIC

Possession

  • Motherwell 47%
  • Celtic 53%

Attempts on target

  • Motherwell 3
  • Celtic 13

Attempts off target

  • Motherwell 2
  • Celtic 9

Corners

  • Motherwell 2
  • Celtic 8

Fouls

  • Motherwell 8
  • Celtic 10
  • Final Result
  • Full Time
  • 90:00+4:41 The referee ends the match.
  • 90:00+2:46 The referee blows for offside. Free kick taken by Artur Boruc.
  • 90:00+2:11 Substitution Aiden McGeady leaves the field to be replaced by Paul Caddis.
  • 90:00+1:38 Shot by Marc-Antoine Fortune from deep inside the penalty area hits the post.
  • 89:46 Scott McDonald takes a shot. Steven Saunders gets a block in.
  • 89:06 Inswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Tom Hateley, clearance made by Gary Caldwell.
  • 86:51 Barry Robson challenges Giles Coke unfairly and gives away a free kick. The free kick is swung in left-footed by Ross Forbes, save by Artur Boruc.
  • 86:25 Close range header by Scott McDonald goes wide of the left-hand upright.
  • 85:43 Corner taken short by Barry Robson.
  • 83:46 Ross Forbes produces a left-footed shot from outside the penalty box and misses right.
  • 79:47 The referee blows for offside. Indirect free kick taken by Steven Saunders.
  • 78:18 Assist on the goal came from Scott McDonald.
  • 78:18 GOAL - Marc-Antoine FortuneMotherwell 2 - 3 Celtic A goal is scored by Marc-Antoine Fortune from outside the penalty area to the top right corner of the goal. Motherwell 2-3 Celtic.
  • 77:02 Gary Caldwell takes the direct free kick.
  • 77:02 Substitution Marc-Antoine Fortune replaces Daniel Fox.
  • 77:02 Booking Jamie Pollock is shown a yellow card.
  • 76:45 Landry N'Guemo fouled by Jamie Pollock, the ref awards a free kick.
  • 75:49 Georgios Samaras takes a shot. Save by John Ruddy.
  • 75:06 Booking Aiden McGeady booked.
  • 74:25 Substitution Ross Forbes is brought on as a substitute for Steve Jennings.
  • 72:53 Shot from just outside the box by Lukas Jutkiewicz misses to the left of the target.
  • 72:07 Barry Robson has a shot on goal from outside the area which misses left.
  • 70:46 A cross is delivered by Barry Robson, Aiden McGeady produces a right-footed shot from the edge of the box and misses to the left of the target.
  • 70:10 Gary Caldwell fouled by Jamie Pollock, the ref awards a free kick. Gary Caldwell restarts play with the free kick.
  • 68:55 Booking Booking for Barry Robson.
  • 67:20 Substitution Jamie Pollock replaces Robert McHugh.
  • 67:13 Andreas Hinkel takes a shot from just inside the penalty box which clears the bar.
  • 63:56 Penalty taken by Barry Robson saved by John Ruddy. Motherwell 2-2 Celtic.
  • 63:56 Unfair challenge on Georgios Samaras by Steven Saunders results in a Penalty.
  • 61:51 Georgios Samaras has a header from close range and clears the crossbar.
  • 61:40 Scott McDonald takes a shot. Save by John Ruddy.
  • 60:45 Substitution (Motherwell) makes a substitution, with Giles Coke coming on for Jamie Murphy.
  • 59:59 The official flags Scott McDonald offside. Free kick taken by Tom Hateley.
  • 58:24 Corner from left by-line taken by Daniel Fox.
  • 57:38 Corner taken left-footed by Daniel Fox, clearance by Stevie Hammell.
  • 56:44 Barry Robson takes the inswinging corner, Gary Caldwell takes a shot. Blocked by Mark Reynolds.
  • 54:02 Gary Caldwell fouled by Lukas Jutkiewicz, the ref awards a free kick. Marc Crosas takes the free kick.
  • 53:26 Effort on goal by Georgios Samaras from just inside the box goes harmlessly over the target.
  • 51:04 Assist by Georgios Samaras.
  • 51:04 GOAL - Aiden McGeadyMotherwell 2 - 2 Celtic Goal scored by Aiden McGeady from just inside the area to the top left corner of the goal. Motherwell 2-2 Celtic.
  • 49:55 Daniel Fox concedes a free kick for a foul on Jamie Murphy. John Ruddy takes the direct free kick.
  • 45:37 Foul by Landry N'Guemo on Steven Meechan, free kick awarded. John Ruddy takes the direct free kick.
  • 45:01 The second half begins.
  • 45:00+1:22 Shot by Aiden McGeady. Save by John Ruddy.
  • Half Time
  • 45:00+1:09 The first half comes to an end.
  • 45:00+0:01 The assist for the goal came from Tom Hateley.
  • 45:00+0:01 GOAL - Mark ReynoldsMotherwell 2 - 1 Celtic Mark Reynolds finds the net with a goal from inside the six-yard box low into the middle of the goal. Motherwell 2-1 Celtic.
  • 44:07 Gary Caldwell challenges Robert McHugh unfairly and gives away a free kick. Tom Hateley sends in a cross,
  • 42:42 Unfair challenge on Jamie Murphy by Aiden McGeady results in a free kick. Tom Hateley delivers the ball from the free kick right-footed from left wing, Andreas Hinkel makes a clearance.
  • 42:17 Shot by Daniel Fox. Blocked by Yassin Moutaouakil.
  • 42:01 Georgios Samaras takes a shot. Mark Reynolds gets a block in.
  • 39:58 Marc Crosas gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Steven Meechan. Mark Reynolds restarts play with the free kick.
  • 36:00 Barry Robson fouled by Yassin Moutaouakil, the ref awards a free kick. Daniel Fox restarts play with the free kick.
  • 34:37 Unfair challenge on Daniel Fox by Lukas Jutkiewicz results in a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Glenn Loovens.
  • 34:24 Foul by Landry N'Guemo on Tom Hateley, free kick awarded. Tom Hateley takes the free kick.
  • 32:03 Foul by Barry Robson on Yassin Moutaouakil, free kick awarded. Steve Jennings takes the direct free kick.
  • 31:13 Corner taken left-footed by Barry Robson, Headed effort from deep inside the area by Gary Caldwell misses to the left of the goal.
  • 30:35 Corner taken left-footed by Barry Robson from the left by-line to the near post, Stevie Hammell makes a clearance.
  • 25:58 Assist on the goal came from Robert McHugh.
  • 25:58 GOAL - Lukas JutkiewiczMotherwell 1 - 1 Celtic Lukas Jutkiewicz finds the net with a goal from inside the six-yard box to the bottom right corner of the goal. Motherwell 1-1 Celtic.
  • 25:56 Robert McHugh delivers the ball,
  • 23:43 Handball by Georgios Samaras. John Ruddy takes the free kick.
  • 22:46 Free kick awarded for a foul by Yassin Moutaouakil on Barry Robson. Free kick crossed by Barry Robson.
  • 21:04 The assistant referee signals for offside against Scott McDonald. Free kick taken by Tom Hateley.
  • 20:17 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Jamie Murphy by Andreas Hinkel. The free kick is swung in right-footed by Robert McHugh, Artur Boruc makes a save.
  • 18:19 Aiden McGeady takes a shot. Save by John Ruddy.
  • 15:21 Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Daniel Fox from the right by-line to the near post, Mark Reynolds makes a clearance.
  • 15:09 Aiden McGeady has a curled shot. John Ruddy makes a save.
  • Correction - 13:58 Assist by Landry N'Guemo.
  • 13:58 Assist on the goal came from Marc Crosas.
  • 13:58 GOAL - Georgios SamarasMotherwell 0 - 1 Celtic Georgios Samaras finds the back of the net with a goal from inside the box to the top right corner of the goal. Motherwell 0-1 Celtic.
  • 12:29 Corner taken left-footed by Barry Robson to the near post, clearance by Stevie Hammell.
  • Correction - 9:22 Robert McHugh takes a inswinging corner to the near post, save by Artur Boruc.
  • 9:22 Tom Hateley takes a inswinging corner from the left by-line to the near post, Artur Boruc makes a save.
  • 8:29 Shot by Georgios Samaras. John Ruddy makes a save.
  • 7:05 Andreas Hinkel produces a left-footed shot from just outside the penalty box that misses to the left of the target.
  • 3:57 Free kick awarded for a foul by Glenn Loovens on Lukas Jutkiewicz. Direct free kick taken by Tom Hateley.
  • 2:38 Effort on goal by Lukas Jutkiewicz from 20 yards. Blocked by Glenn Loovens.
  • 0:02 Free kick awarded for a foul by Yassin Moutaouakil on Barry Robson. Artur Boruc takes the free kick.
  • 0:00 The ref blows the whistle to start the match.

Live text and data provided by The Press Association.



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Scottish Premier table

Saturday, 12 December 2009 17:00 UK

Position Team P GD PTS
Full Scottish Premier table
1 Celtic 15 17 33
2 Rangers 14 17 31
3 Hibernian 15 12 29
4 Dundee Utd 14 9 27
5 Motherwell 15 0 20
6 Aberdeen 15 -4 18
7 Hamilton 15 -9 16
8 Hearts 15 -5 14
9 St Mirren 15 -6 14
10 St Johnstone 15 -9 13
11 Kilmarnock 15 -9 13
12 Falkirk 15 -13 9

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