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Page last updated at 15:17 GMT, Saturday, 24 April 2010 16:17 UK

Scottish football as it happened

GOALFLASHES AND MAJOR INCIDENTS (all times GMT)

MY SPORT: DEBATE

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By Thomas McGuigan

1717: Thanks for your company this afternoon. We're back tomorrow for the 1215 BST kick-off at Tannadice. And we'll have highlights of today's games on the website at 1800 BST tomorrow. Enjoy your Saturday night!

1715: Well, that was another nerve-shredding afternoon in the battle to avoid relegation. Tomorrow, our attention turns to the race for the title. Rangers, closing in on a second successive title, face Hibs at Easter Road; a win will secure the championship. If Celtic fail to beat Dundee United in the early kick off then Walter Smith's men will be crowned champions before a ball is kicked in the Scottish capital.

1710: St Mirren, with some breathing space, move up to 32 points, Kilmarnock are on 29 and Falkirk are rooted to the bottom of the table on 28.

1705: St Mirren's victory over Kilmarnock sees Gus MacPherson's side open up a four-point lead over basement side Falkirk. The Bairns host St Mirren next week.

1700: FULL-TIME ST MIRREN 1-0 KILMARNOCK

Full time
1657: FULL-TIME FALKIRK 0-1 HAMILTON

1655: A long ball into the Hamilton penalty area triggers mayhem but a sea of blue and white Falkirk jerseys contrive to miss the chance to fire home. That could be their last chance to rescue a point.

1652: St Mirren goalkeeper Paul Gallacher denies Kilmarnock an equaliser with a near-post save from Chris Maguire as the visitors exert late pressure.

1651:
My Sport
From Bairn_O_Falkirk On My Sport: "Disappointed that Falkirk fans are leaving with so long left for an equaliser, we must have the worst set of fans by far in the league. That sight is not going to inspire the team to fight to the death."

1649: Pedro Moutinho fires in a shot from about 25 yards but it flashes past Sean Murdoch's right-hand post; the Bairns are running out of time.

Full time
1648: FULL-TIME: HEARTS 0-2 MOTHERWELL

1646: Some Falkirk supporters have seen enough and are streaming for the exits. The Bairns have six minutes to find an equaliser.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
St Mirren goal: Andy Dorman forces the ball home after Graham Carey's curling free-kick is headed back into the six-yard box by Michael Higdon.

1640: GOAL! ST MIRREN 1-0 KILMARNOCK (ANDY DORMAN)

1632: Falkirk come agonisingly close to an equaliser. Bairns captain Darren Barr's header from Pedro Moutinho's corner comes back off the post and hits Accies striker Mickael Antoine-Curier on the back of the head before keeper Sean Murdoch gathers!

1630: Marius Zalkiukas somewhat atones for his earlier own goal by making a goal-line clearance to deny Jamie Murphy.

1629: Accies forward Marco Paixao, obviously buoyed by his first half goal, tries his luck with an acrobatic overhead kick but the ball sails over the crossbar.

1628: Hearts midfielder Ryan Stevenson steals a yard on Stephen Craigan and fires a shot into the arms of Michael Fraser. More encouraging from Hearts, but they still trail Motherwell 2-0.

1625:
My Sport
From Seilbahn On My Sport: "Re 16.12: Oi! I don't want anything "like it" from The Bairns!" Consider me reprimanded!

1623: "If anyone looks like scoring, it's Motherwell. There's no way you can see Hearts getting a goal at the moment." BBC Radio Scotland pundit Brian Irvine

1621: Falkirk have a little more than half an hour to find an equaliser. The Bairns run the risk of remaining at the foot of the table, while relegation rivals St Mirren and Kilmarnock, who remain goalless, have the chance to pull two points ahead.

1620: "I'm at Tynecastle and Motherwell should be 4 or 5 up. I'm worried by Jim Jefferies' statement that he has the nucleus of a good team for next season." Ian, from Edinburgh, via text on 80295

1614: Kilmarnock boss Jimmy Calderwood makes changes at half-time, with Chris Maguire replacing Mark Burchill up front and Jamie Fowler coming in midfield in place of Scott Severin, who appeared to be struggling with an injury.

1612: That's more like it from Falkirk! Pedro Moutinho cuts in from the left flank and hammers in a cracking strike that Sean Murdoch does well to tip away.

1611: The second half gets under way at St Mirren Park.

1608: We are only seven minutes into the second half and Hearts have made all three of their substitutions in an attempt to save the game. Ian Black replaces Michael Stewart, Calum Elliot comes on for Gary Glen and Ryan Stevenson replaces David Obua.

1607: The second half is seconds old at the Falkirk Stadium.

1603: We're back under way at Tynecastle.

1602: Good news about Hugh Murray, the midfielder having taken a seat in the St Mirren dugout despite having been knocked cold following a challenge by Kilmarnock striker Kevin Kyle midway through the first half. BBC Scotland reporter Chris McLauchlin says Murray looks dazed and confused, but there appear to be no concerns about anything more serious. Dazed and confused - that's the way I feel looking at my woeful predictions...

Half time
1555: ST MIRREN 0-0 KILMARNOCK

Someone has struck the woodwork
1553: Kilmarnock midfielder Scott Severin fires a stunning volley across the goalkeeper, but it crashes off the far post and runs clear.

1550: St Mirren midfielder Andy Dorman somehow misses a great chances when he toes the ball over the bar from two yards following a long throw into the Kilmarnock penalty area.

Half time
1550: HALF-TIME: FALKIRK 0-1 HAMILTON

1549: "Just as you get this kind of scrappy game, you get eight more minutes of it" BBC Radio Scotland commentator John Barnes at St Mirren Park

1548: We're deep into the eight minutes of injury time at St Mirren Park, because of the lengthy delay following Hugh Murray's injury.

Half time
1545: HALF-TIME HEARTS 0-2 MOTHERWELL

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Motherwell goal: Tom Hateley's free-kick comes off Marius Zaliukas and ends in the net with Motherwell's John Sutton claiming the credit for the goal.

1544: GOAL! HEARTS 0-2 MOTHERWELL (MARIUS ZALIUKAS own goal)

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Motherwell goal: Stevie Hammell's corner causes mayhem in the Hearts box and Steven Saunders wins an initial header and then forces the ball over the line to give Motherwell the lead. That's his first goal of the season.

1540: GOAL! HEARTS 0-1 MOTHERWELL (Steven Saunders)

1537: With about eight minutes to go until the break, Marco Paixao's effort is the only goal from this afternoon's three games. The Accies are good value for their lead at the moment; fingernails being bitten to the quick in Paisley...

1535: "Confidence is oozing from the Hamilton players and Falkirk really can't get a look in," BBC Radio Scotland commentator Rob MacLean at the Falkirk Stadium.

1531: Falkirk are struggling to create anything of note and the alarm bells must be ringing among the Bairns' support.

1529: "At the moment it's on a knife-edge. It's beautifully balanced." BBC Radio Scotland pundit Brian Irvine at Tynecastle

1527: Jamie MacDonald thwarts Giles Coke again as Motherwell continue to pose a threat to the Hearts goal.

1525: Falkirk left-back Marc Twaddle limps off and is replaced by Tam Scobbie.

1523: The Bairns defence parts like the Red Sea and Flavio Paixao is clean through but Robert Olenik rescues the home side with a good block at the forward's feet. Elvis may shed the winter jacket soon and get those sleeves rolled up...

1523: Garry Brady replaces Hugh Murray in St Mirren's midfield after a lengthy wait for the Buddies veteran to be stretchered off against Kilmarnock.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Hamilton goal: Accies draw first blood at the Falkirk Stadium as Marco Paixao leaps to head an arrowed delivery from James Wesolowski into the top corner of the net.

1519: GOAL! FALKIRK 0-1 HAMILTON (MARCO PAIXAO)

1517: A deflected shot falls into the path of Mickael Antoine-Curier but the Accies striker can only scuff his close-range effort straight at Falkirk keeper Robert Olejnik.

1516: The stretcher is called for St Mirren midfielder Hugh Murray after what appears to have been a clash of heads against Kilmarnock.

1515: St Mirren midfielder Stephen O'Donnell fires into the side netting after he pounces on a clearance by Kilmarnock defender Frazer Wright.

1514: The Hearts fans cannot believe David Obua has not put the ball in the net as his tap-in attempt is blocked by Michael Fraser but it matters little in the end as the forward was offside.

1513: They are on their third ball at St Mirren Park. Following complaints from Kilmarnock striker Kevin Kyle, among others, there have been two attempts already to find one with sufficient pressure to satisfy the players. Deflating stuff!

1512: Giles Coke's goalbound shot is well saved by Hearts goalkeeper Jamie MacDonald.

1510: Manuel Pascali heads just wide for Kilmarnock from a corner as they create the first chance of the relegation battle with St Mirren in Paisley.

1507: Falkirk manager Steven Pressley must be feeling the cold. He's sporting a jacket, buttoned up to the top with a big winter scarf on too! During recent games, the Bairns boss has been cutting about the touchline with shirt sleeves rolled up, after finding inspiration watching Italy's Under-21 coach Pierluigi Casiraghi during a coaching spying mission. Big Elvis said he felt it said to his players: I mean business...

1505: "The ball has been in the air more than on the pitch in the opening exchanges." BBC Radio Scotland pundit Craig Paterson at St Mirren Park

1504: Pedro Moutinho cuts into the Hamilton penalty box and fires a shot on target but it's easily gathered by keeper Sean Murdoch.

1501: The Falkirk Stadium is bathed in sunshine. The Bairns are playing for their lives at the bottom of the SPL pile but the Accies have been flying of late. Billy Reid's side have only lost one of their last nine league games, taking 18 from a possible 27 points.

1500: Hang onto your hats as the first half gets under way at this afternoon's three games.

1452: "It's a wonderful day and I think both teams are looking forward to it. I can't say we are revelling in it as we are not used to it. You revel in it if you are in the top six and chasing Europe." Kilmarnock boss Jimmy Calderwood

1451: "I've already said, as each game comes along, the games get bigger and this is the biggest of them all. If we can get the three points, it will be crucial." St Mirren manager Gus MacPherson

1450: Motherwell replace Jamie Murphy with Lukas Jutkiewicz in the only change to the team that lost to Dundee United.

1445: Hearts make three changes: Gary Glen has recovered from a hamstring problem while Michael Stewart and David Templeton start. Eggert Jonsson misses out through suspension with Laryea Kingston and Ian Black dropping to the bench.

1442: Teams from Tynecastle:
Hearts: MacDonald, Craig Thomson, Zaliukas, Bouzid, Lee Wallace, Santana, Michael Stewart, Palazuelos, Templeton, Glen, Obua. Subs: Lyness, Black, Kingston, Stevenson, Jason Thomson, Elliot, Robinson.
Motherwell: Fraser, Coke, Craigan, Reynolds, Hammell, Saunders, Jennings, Hateley, O'Brien, Sutton, Jutkiewicz. Subs: Hyslop, Humphrey, Murphy, McGlinchey, Forbes, McHugh, Quinn.
Referee: B Winter

1439: Accies show three changes: goalkeeper Sean Murdoch, Trent McClenahan and Marco Paixao coming in for Tomas Cerny, Grant Evans and James McArthur; the latter two not making the bench.

1438: Falkirk are unchanged from the side which lost at Aberdeen last week. Bairns boss Steven Pressley keeps faith with Pedro Moutinho and Mark Stewart in attack.

1435: Teams from the Falkirk Stadium:
Falkirk: Olejnik, Duffie, Barr, McLean, Twaddle, Stewart, O'Brien, Arfield, Flynn, Moutinho, Healy. Subs: Wagenaar, Scobbie, Showunmi, Lynch, Marceta, Lima, Compton.
Hamilton: Murdoch, McClenahan, Canning, McLaughlin, Mensing, Imrie, Wesolowski, Neil, Flavio Paixao, Marco Paixao, Antoine-Curier. Subs: Cerny, van Zanten, Gillespie, Elebert, Thomas, Wilkie, Crawford.
Referee: C Murray

1432: Kilmarnock welcome back talismanic striker Kevin Kyle from suspension, while Frazer Wright and Scott Severin return after injury.

1430: A blow for St Mirren ahead of the relegation clash against Kilmarnock. Striker Billy Mehmet misses out after failing to recover from a knock he sustained in training. Michael Higdon steps into the breach for the battle in Paisley.

1428: Teams from St Mirren Park:
St Mirren: Gallacher, Carey, Mair, Potter, Murray, Dorman, Thomson, Higdon, O'Donnell, Robb, Barron. Subs: Howard, Brady, Loy, Dargo, Innes, McLennan, Johnston.
Kilmarnock: Bell, Clancy, Wright, Ford, Bryson, Pascali, Kyle, Kelly, Hamill, Severin, Burchill. Subs: Combe, Hay, Fowler, Russell, Skelton, Owens, Maguire.
Referee: C Thompson

1424: Early team news from the Falkirk Stadium. Hamilton midfielder James McArthur will be missing from the Accies line-up today. The sought-after playmaker has been linked with a move away from New Douglas Park recently.

1416:
My Sport
From bringthemonjpn On My Sport: "Classic.. perhaps not. Who pays for the hospital bills to unfold McGhee's arms?" Brilliant! That made me cough up some of my cup of tea!

1414: A win for Steven Pressley's Falkirk would see the Bairns move off the foot of the SPL table, as St Mirren and Kilmarnock battle it out in Paisley.

1409: "Who will take the job? Why would you take that job?" BBC Radio Scotland pundit Jim Spence poses the question regarding the SFA's vacancy

1407: The BBC Radio Scotland Sportsound team are chewing over the turbulent reign of former SFA chief executive Gordon Smith.

1400: No predictor points for me following the game at McDiarmid Park. Surely I'll fare better in this afternoon's three other games? We've got Falkirk v Hamilton, St Mirren against Kilmarnock and Hearts v Motherwell. Get your scores in using the BBC Predictor

1357: Just under an hour until the relegation battle takes another twist. Calling all Falkirk, St Mirren and Kilmarnock fans: how are your fingernails looking?

1355:
My Sport
From JodyMorris4England On My Sport: "After all his injuries, it's just great to see Andy Jackson back playing in the first team. Hopefully, we will finally see the potential we all know he has come to fruition next season. He could be brilliant."

1354: That point means Aberdeen are officially safe from relegation from Scotland's top flight, but this encounter was far from a classic...

Full time
1353: FULL-TIME ST JOHNSTONE 1-1 ABERDEEN

1350: We're into the second of four minutes of injury time and Murray Davidson heads over from inside the area. What a chance for Saints to nab maximum points at the death!

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
St Johnstone goal: Saints substitute Liam Craig's free-kick is blocked by goalkeeper Stuart Nelson and Andy Jackson's follow-up comes back off the post before hitting the luckless keeper and trundling into the net. An own goal!

1347: GOAL! ST JOHNSTONE 1-1 ABERDEEN (ANDY JACKSON)

1344: Aberdeen manager Mark McGhee is calmness personified on the touchline. His side are on-course for three points.

1342: Saints substitute Liam Craig could've made himself an instant hero, but his fresh-air shot inside the area sums up the home side's efforts in front of goal today.

1341: Liam Craig comes on for Collin Samuel as Saints look for a spark in the closing stages.

1340: You wonder whether Aberdeen have weathered the St Johnstone storm. With nine minutes remaining the Dons are dealing with forays into their penalty area with increasing ease...

1339:
My Sport
From red_4_life On My Sport: "If we can win the rest of our games this season I reckon it will give us that little more confidence that we need to start next season with"

1334: The second half has become a war of attrition: very little in the way of goalmouth action as both sides trade possession in midfield.

1328: The Dons seem happy to absorb St Johnstone pressure and hit them on the counter attack. The game is crying out for a wee bit of magic in the closing 20 minutes. Cillian Sheridan is withdrawn for the hosts, with Andy Jackson coming on.

1325: Aberdeen manager Mark McGhee shuffles his pack with a double substitution: Michael Paton and Fraser Fyvie come on for Paul Marshall and Sone Aluko.

1322: Stuart Nelson saves comfortably from Chris Millar's 25-yard effort. Saints' best bet seems to be from long-range shots and set-pieces.

1320: With half an hour remaining, St Johnstone are struggling to penetrate the Dons defence and find an equaliser.

1315: Saints striker Cillian Sheridan and Jerel Ifil indulge in a shoving match near the corner flag. Whistler Dougie McDonald, like the referee in Gladiators, trots over to give the pair a tongue-lashing.

1313: St Johnstone midfielder Chris Millar sends a cross across goal but there are no takers in blue and another chance is lost. Kenny Deuchar comes on for Filipe Morais.

1312: Filipe Morais drags a shot well wide of Stuart Nelson's goal. The Saints have been toothless in front of goal today.

1310: Ricky Foster, not unlike an American Football running back, embarks on a lung-bursting run deep into Dons territory, but he runs out of steam on the edge of the area.

1308: Rutkiewicz sees another header blocked inside the Aberdeen penalty area. Saints are turning the screw here.

1307: Kevin Rutkiewicz meets Danny Grainger's corner-kick but his header is cleared off the line by Sone Aluko - that's why a man on the post is always worth his weight in gold.

1306: Chris Millar scampers down the right and sends in a dangerous cross but Jerel Ifil heads behind for a Saints corner.

1304: "Derek McInnes will be looking for St Johnstone to come racing out of the blocks." BBC Radio Scotland pundit Jim Leighton

1303: St Johnstone get the second half under way.

1300: My chances of getting the right scoreline for today's match have already been torpedoed by Steven MacLean. I've gone for 2-0 Saints. Get your scores in using the BBC Predictor

1256: "St Johnstone have went back to what they are when not playing Rangers: rubbish! Sheridan couldn't hit a barn door with a hose." Gavin, from Perth, lets rip via text on 80295

1250:
My Sport
From Hawkeye On My Sport: "Seilbahn, I'll bet you a gazillion pounds that Hamilton don't finish sixth."

1248: "St Johnstone just can't defend set pieces and, as the first half wore on, Aberdeen were the better side." BBC Radio Scotland pundit Murdo MacLeod

Half time
1246: HALF-TIME ST JOHNSTONE 0-1 ABERDEEN

1245: In sharp contrast, gum-chewing Dons boss Mark McGhee, with arms folded, looks as though he's surveying his garden after cutting the grass - and is quietly content with his efforts!

1244: Deep-in-thought St Johnstone manager Derek McInnes taps a pen against his cheek on the touchline as he mulls over how to help his side carve out an equaliser. We've got two minutes of the first half remaining.

1243: "Aberdeen haven't really pressured St Johnstone too often but when they do they look like they've got goals in them." BBC Radio Scotland pundit Jim Leighton

1240: Dons defender Davide Grassi has a free header inside the Saints penalty area, but he bullets his effort wide.

1239: Aberdeen come within inches of doubling their lead. Danny Grainger and Saints goalkeeper dither over who should clear a long ball and the predatory Steven MacLean nips in between the pair, only to see his effort hit the bar.

1237: Sone Aluko gets the first chance to strut his stuff in this game, dragging his marker Danny Grainger in towards goal but the tricky winger's shot fails to trouble Graeme Smith.

1236: The pressure on Aberdeen is temporarily relieved as Kevin Rutkiewicz clips the ankles of Dons goalscorer Steven MacLean. But the visitors can't profit from a promising position and the Saints press again for what would prove a deserved equaliser...

1234:
My Sport
From seilbahn On My Sport: "C'mon the Dons! Accies could take 6th place if u win!!"

1233: Danny Grainger sends in a dangerous cross but Dave Mackay can't get his effort on target. Aberdeen remain in front but Saints have them pinned in their own half.

1231: St Johnstone midfielder Jody Morris picks up the ball on the halfway line but looks up to see a sea of red jerseys in front of him. Aberdeen are giving Saints no space at all to establish their passing game.

1228: Dave Mackay sends in a great cross from the right and finds Collin Samuel in the box. The striker chests the ball down but is superbly blocked by Derek Young as Aberdeen snuff out the danger.

1225: We've played 25 minutes at McDiarmid Park and goalmouth opportunities have been few and far between. Saints have recovered from the shock of conceding that Steven MacLean goal but have struggled to test Stuart Nelson in the Dons goal.

1224: Filipe Morais does a wee Ronaldinho-style step-over to evade the attention of Stuart Duff but he overruns the ball and it trundles out for a goal-kick: much gnashing of teeth among St Johnstone ranks!

1222: "Saints will be looking to get back into the game and to do that they need to get Morris and Davidson into the game." BBC Radio Scotland pundit Jim Leighton

1221: St Johnstone striker Collin Samuel, after a bright start, is looking isolated up front for the hosts. I remember a game earlier this season when he gave Rangers defender David Weir a torrid time on this very ground.

1219: Aberdeen's goal has shocked the home fans at McDiarmid Park; Saints were making all the early running but the Dons scored with their first effort on target.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Aberdeen goal: The visitors take the lead against the run of play. St Johnstone's defenders are statue-like as Davide Grassi heads a corner towards goal and Steven MacLean looks to have got the final touch before it found the net. Despite dominating the opening quarter, Saints find themselves behind.

1216: GOAL! ST JOHNSTONE 0-1 ABERDEEN (STEVEN MACLEAN)

1208:
My Sport
From bringthemonjpn On My Sport: "Should be a crackerjack of a match. Aberdeen looking to prove they can score, and St Johnstone showing them how to do it."

1207: Aberdeen midfielder Stuart Duff tries to find Sone Aluko with a long ball but it's too heavy - the Dons have yet to settle in the opening six minutes.

1205: "I played with Kevin Rutkiewicz at Aberdeen and it's great to see him back playing after a long spell out through injury." BBC Radio Scotland pundit Jim Leighton

1204: Aberdeen make their first foray into Saints territory but they are unable to get the classy Sone Aluko on the ball.

1202: St Johnstone midfielder Chris Millar stings the palms of Stuart Nelson with a vicious low shot, which the keeper does well to block. Brilliant start from the hosts.

1200: Aberdeen manager Mark McGhee cuts a relaxed-looking figure in the dugout as the visitors get the game under way.

1158: The sun is threatening to put in an appearance in Perth as both sets of players trot out onto the McDiarmid Park pitch.

1151: Aberdeen drop goalkeeper Jamie Langfield for the second time this term, with Stuart Nelson starting in goal. Paul Marshall and Sone Aluko are also drafted in by Dons boss Mark McGhee.

1150: St Johnstone captain Kevin Rutkiewicz makes his first appearance for almost five months. The defender is one of four changes for Saints, striker Collin Samuel makes his first start since December, Murray Davidson starts, as does fit-again Dave Mackay.

1148: Teams from McDiarmid Park
St Johnstone: Smith, Irvine, MacKay, Rutkiewicz, Grainger, Millar, Morris, Davidson, Morais, Sheridan, Samuel. Subs: Main, Anderson, Gartland, Craig, Sheerin, Deuchar, Jackson.
Aberdeen: Nelson, Foster, Ifil, Duff, Young, Marshall, Kerr, Grassi, Aluko, MacLean, Mackie. Subs: Langfield, Paton, Fyvie, Robertson, Gibson, Shaughnessy, Hansson.

Referee: D McDonald

1145: Good morning and welcome to our coverage of today's Scottish Premier League action.




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Scottish Premier results

24 Apr 2010 23:59 UK


Scottish Premier table snapshot

As it stood on 24 Apr 2010 23:59 UK

Position Team P GD PTS
1 Rangers 34 53 80
2 Celtic 34 28 69
3 Dundee Utd 34 13 62
4 Motherwell 35 2 51
5 Hibernian 34 3 50
6 Hearts 35 -11 44
7 St Johnstone 35 -4 43
8 Hamilton 35 -10 42
9 Aberdeen 35 -14 38
10 St Mirren 35 -12 32
11 Kilmarnock 35 -22 29
12 Falkirk 35 -26 28

see also
SPL photo gallery
24 Apr 10 |  Scottish Premier


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