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Page last updated at 11:41 GMT, Saturday, 26 February 2011

Scottish football as it happened


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By Thomas McGuigan

1700: Remember, you can see highlights of today's four SPL games on our website at 1800 tomorrow. We're back tomorrow afternoon for Motherwell v Celtic and Rangers v St Johnstone. Hope you can join us then. Cheers!

1655: Hibs run out comfortable winners at home to Inverness, while Kilmarnock cruise to victory over St Mirren. The Buddies, however, will be offered some cheer after hearing of Dundee United's late equaliser at relegation-threatened Hamilton Accies.



Full time

Hibs goal: Substitute Lewis Stevenson fires in a shot that deflects past Ryan Esson to surely seal victory for Hibs.


1646: David Goodwillie forces a superb save from Hamilton goalkeeper Tomas Cerny as United press for a winner.

Dundee Utd goal: Just when Accies thought they'd bagged a valuable three points in their fight to avoid relegation, United find an equaliser. Sub Andis Shala rises highest to nod home a cross from Craig Conway.


1638: Dundee United keeper Dusan Pernis gets down to smother a bobbling shot from Dougie Imrie as Hamilton hit on the counter-attack.

1635: "It has been all St Mirren in the second half and Kilmarnock are struggling to get out their own half. Eremenko seems to have lost his discipline and, if St Mirren managed to get a goal back, the momentum would be with them"
BBC Radio Scotland pundit Jack Ross

1634: The Hibs defence switch off as Richie Foran's header back across goal finds Ross Tokely but the big defender cannot hit the target. A good chance missed for the visitors.

1633: Kilmarnock playmaker Alexei Eremenko is fortunate not to receive at least a yellow card for a two-footed challenge on St Mirren's Jure Travner.

1632: Accies sub Damian Casalinuovo expertly pulls down a high ball, shimmies past a defender and then falls flat on his face as he stubs a shot wide. Shocking...

1631: Hibs scorer Callum Booth shows his defensive prowess, heading out from under his own crossbar as Inverness look for a leveller.

1627: Precious little for the 2,011 hardy souls inside New Douglas Park to get excited about. The Accies still hold that slender lead, courtesy of Mickael Antoine-Curier's penalty.

1625: Derek Riordan's shot produces a one-handed save by Ryan Esson as Hibs search for a second.

1620: Craig Bryson clears off the Kilmarnock line after St Mirren defender Darren McGregor meets a Jure Travner corner to head towards goal.

1619: Alexei Eremenko squanders a chance to put Kilmarnock further ahead, hesitating when a Garry Hay cross gives him the chance to head over goalkeeper Paul Gallacher and Jure Travner nips in to clear the danger.

Hibs goal: Colin Calderwood's men break the deadlock as Callum Booth receives Derek Riordan's pass and catches the ball perfectly to lift it over goalkeeper Ryan Esson and into the net. That's Booth's first goal for Hibernian.


1611: St Mirren half-time substitute Kenny McLean, who replaced Jim Goodwin, sends a low drive against a post, the ball strikes goalkeeper Anssi Jaakkola but deflects wide of the Kilmarnock goal. Wretched luck for the beleaguered Buddies.

1610: Dundee United are looking fairly subdued against SPL basement boys Hamilton Accies at New Douglas Park.

1608: "The second half has started like the first half, with St Mirren having a lot of possession, but we all know that Kilmarnock can break with devastating effect"
BBC Radio Scotland pundit Jack Ross

1607: Goalkeeper Graham Stack comes to Hibernian's rescue, coming off his line to block Adam Rooney's effort at goal. The Inverness striker had escaped Paul Hanlon and looked destined to score...

1605: Mickael Antoine-Curier has the ball in the net again but the big Hamilton striker was offside as he tucked a smart shot beyond Dusan Pernis.

1604: @andrewburns49 tweets: "Mickael Antoine-Curier has scored every one of Hamilton's three goals in their past eight games."

1600: Here we go around the grounds for the second half...

Half time

Chris McLaughlin on Twitter at New Douglas Park: "The Hamilton penalty award looked soft."

1543: Some of the misses at New Douglas Park in the first half have been unbelievable. You can feast your eyes on all the action when we publish the highlights on our website tomorrow night at 1800.

1537: Another amazing miss from Dundee United! This time it's David Robertson side-footing Paul Dixon's wonderful cross over the crossbar from six yards.

Hamilton goal: Gavin Skelton is clipped by a high challenge from Prince Buaben and Mickael Antoine-Curier tucks away the penalty after a stuttering run-up, which was a little naughty.

1535: Inverness escape when Victor Palsson's header is cleared off the line by Russell Duncan.


1533: Penalty for Hamilton Accies!

Kilmarnock goal: William Gros returns the favour to Alexei Eremenko at Rugby Park. The Frenchman plays the ball to the Finn and the Killie playmaker deceives Paul Gallacher with a 20-yard drive that bounced in front of the goalkeeper before finding the net.

1532: Following a long throw-in, the ball falls kindly for Gavin Skelton near the penalty spot but the Hamilton man skews his volley horribly wide of target.


1528: BBC Radio Scotland commentator John Barnes has recounted a story about Mixu Paatelainen being asked where he found William Gros. The Killie manager apparently replied: "I saw him playing keepie-uppie in Mauritius and that was good enough for me." It might not be far from the truth when you recall that Scottish midfielder Jamie Stevenson once won a move from Alloa Athletic to Real Mallorca after being spotted playing football on a beach while on holiday.

1526: "Mixu Paatelainen likes to play with a lone striker. And, after losing Conor Sammon, he has tried a few people up there without any of them setting the heather alight. So William Gros has been given his chance and it looks like he enjoys that role"
BBC Radio Scotland pundit Jack Ross

1524: Oh dear. Dundee United's Johnny Russell is guilty of a terrible miss as he slides in to connect with David Goodwillie's delivery across the face of goal. The ball somehow gets stuck under his legs and trundles wide, much to his embarrassment.

1523: "Johnny Russell for player of year. Up and coming star. Totally immense. Good pace and cracking chances at goal. Totally transformed United." From GC in Glasgow, via text on 80295

1522: Some hesitant defending from Gavin Skelton presents Craig Conway with a shooting chance but Hamilton keeper Tomas Cerny beats away the winger's rasping strike.

Chris McLaughlin on Twitter at New Douglas Park: "Great chance for Goodwillie. Header just wide. Murdo's heater now on the blink. Karma?"

1517: Flavio Paixo has a go from near the halfway line but fails to trouble Dundee United keeper Dusan Pernis. Accies manager Billy Reid looks far from impressed by the Portuguese forward's ambitious effort.

Kilmarnock goal: The hosts burst into life after a quiet start at Rugby Park and a superb ball from Alexei Eremenko sends Williams Gros through and the striker puts the ball through the legs of goalkeeper Paul Gallacher to open the scoring.

1515: Dundee United striker David Goodwillie attacks a miscued cross from Scott Robertson but his powerful downward header from eight yards fizzes wide. He really should have hit the target from there.

1514: Inverness striker Adam Rooney is denied by Graham Stack's save after meeting Richie Foran's cross. The Hibernian defence is struggling to cope with the Highlanders' front pair.


1512: Dougie Imrie lets fly from 25 yards but the Hamilton midfielder's angled effort sails over the crossbar.

1510: Not much in the way of goalmouth action at Rugby Park in the opening 10 minutes.

1506: Hamilton have done most of the pressing in the opening exchanges at New Douglas Park but neither goalkeeper has been troubled.

1503: Adam Rooney nips in ahead of Steven Dickoh and tries to chip goalkeeper Graham Stack but the effort clears the crossbar.

1502: "Some fans can be a bit unforgiving when players come back to the ground." BBC Radio Scotland pundit Steve Cowan ponders Chris Hogg's return to Easter Road

1501: "The pitch is almost all in shadow."
BBC Radio Scotland commentator Paul Mitchell at Easter Road

1500: We're getting under way at the three SPL grounds, here's hoping for plenty of goals...

1450: Just a reminder that to get in touch and offer your views by tweeting the commentary via the hashtag #bbcsportsound, ask me a question direct @thomasmcg76 or text via 80295.

1443: Chris McLaughlin on Twitter: "Murdo McLeod is hogging his heater here at New Douglas Park. I'm almost on his knee!" What an image!

Alasdair Lamont at New Douglas Park: "Canning out, Mensing in at centre back as Accies go 4-3-3. Only change from defeat at Pittodrie. Dundee United unchanged from draw with St Johnstone."

Kilmarnock: Jaakkola, Hamill, Sissoko, Wright, Hay, Bryson, Pascali, Eremenko, Fowler, Taouil, Gros. Subs: Letheren, Clancy, Rui Miguel, Silva, Agard, Kelly, McKenzie.
St Mirren: Gallacher, McAusland, Potter, McGregor, van Zanten, Murray, Goodwin, Thomson, Travner, Dargo, Higdon. Subs: Samson, Lynch, McCluskey, Cregg, Mooy, Lamont, McLean.
Referee: Calum Murray

Hamilton: Cerny, Skelton, McLaughlin, Elebert, Routledge, Flavio Paixao, McDonald, Mensing, McAlister, Antoine-Curier, Imrie. Subs: Murdoch, Graham, Casalinuovo, Buchanan, Carrington, Crawford, Hasselbaink.
Dundee Utd: Pernis, Dixon, Watson, Dillon, van der Meulen, David Robertson, Scott Robertson, Buaben, Conway, Goodwillie, Russell. Subs: Mentel, Swanson, Gomis, Douglas, Shala, Dow, Armstrong.
Referee: Alan Muir

Hibernian: Stack, Towell, Dickoh, Hanlon, Booth, Wotherspoon, Palsson, Miller, Scott, Riordan, Sodje. Subs: Smith, Nish, Stephens, Rankin, Duffy, Stevenson, Thornhill.
Inverness CT: Esson, Tokely, Hogg, Munro, Duff, Odhiambo, Duncan, Cox, Doran, Foran, Rooney. Subs: Tuffey, Golabek, Innes, Morrison, Ross, Sutherland, MacDonald.
Referee: Craig Thomson

1414: Our reporter Heather Dewar has spoken to SPL secretary Iain Blair about the Rangers fixture congestion story. Blair told BBC Scotland he does have an "understanding" of the "challenges" presented by the fixture backlog Rangers face and insists they're working to try to resolve the issues.

1410: Get Funky by James Brown is blasting out of the tannoy at New Douglas Park. Is this a new tactic from Billy Reid to get some "sexy football" from Accies?

1356: Kilmarnock goalkeeper Cammy Bell may not feature this afternoon against St Mirren. He's struggling with an ankle injury. Anssi Jaakkola is on standby.

1352: Craig Brown and Jim Jefferies shake hands before making their way down the tunnel after a goalless draw at Pittodrie. Neither manager will be upset with a point but Hearts keeper Marian Kello deserves a round of applause on the Hearts team bus heading home to Edinburgh after his impressive display.

Full time

1350: Dons substitute Nick Blackman fires in a ferocious drive but Hearts keeper Marian Kello produces another superb save!

1348: Aberdeen launch a desperate attack; we're into the first of three minutes of injury-time.

1345: Replays show there was no contact between Templeton and McArdle - the correct decision by the whistler.

1344: There's a mushroom cloud hanging over the Hearts dugout... David Templeton goes down in the penalty area under the close attention of Rory McArdle, but referee Mike Tumilty is having none of it. Jim Jefferies is not a happy camper.

1341: Steven Smith and Calum Elliot suffer a nasty clash of heads in the Dons' penalty area. Does Rory McArdle have any spare red bandages back in the dressing room? Aberdeen boss Craig Brown cajoles his side from the technical area, hoping for a late winner.

1339: Aberdeen goalkeeper Jamie Langfield thunders a clearance out of Dons territory but he's got more chance of knocking off spectator and Scotland boss Craig Levein's glasses with that one than finding a team-mate in red.

1337: "The players are getting a bit nervous now; they know there's not long to go. They don't want to lose it."
BBC Radio Scotland pundit Craig Paterson

1336: Both sides have cranked up the pace of their attacks a notch in search of a goal. They've got 11 minutes in which to find one...

1335: The Aberdeen fans among the 9,100 crowd at Pittodrie are beginning to get a bit restless with their side. Can they find a winner?

1333: Ryan Jack spurns the best chance of the second as he drags his shot wide from inside the penalty area. Dons boss Craig Brown throws up his arms in frustration. What a chance!

1332: @smare_14 tweets: "Wish Hearts could blame the state of the pitch for their display, but the Dons have moved the ball about well at times."

1330: Nick Blackman is on for Scott Vernon as Aberdeen seek a breakthrough and a way past the impressive Marian Kello in the Hearts goal.

1327: Come on boys, give us a goal! Twenty minutes remaining. Will Hearts spurn the chance to leapfrog Rangers and move into second place? A late winner for the Dons would see them move to within a point of sixth-placed Inverness.

1326: Our automatic refresh should be back up and running after our top boffins worked their magic...

1321: Derek Young comes on for David McNamee as Aberdeen shuffle their defensive pack; we've got a little over 25 minutes remaining.

1320: Hearts make a change as Andrew Driver, who was making his first start since April, is withdrawn and Calum Elliot comes on bolster the visitors' attack.

1318: Rudi Skacel pounces on a mistake in the Aberdeen midfield but his low centre intended for Stephen Elliott is snuffed out by David McNamee and the Hearts chance is lost.

1316: @macdonald26 tweets: "If Aberdeen don't score in next 10mins I can see Hearts nicking it."

1315: Play rages up the other end as the Dons launch a lightening counter attack but Robert Milsom's lung-bursting run fails to pay dividends and Hearts clear their lines.

1314: Aberdeen defender Andrew Considine clears a dangerous Hearts cross for a corner and the visitors are beginning to take a grip on this game.

1310: Both sides are trading possession cheaply and the game is crying out for someone to produce a wee bit of magic. Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond is at Pittodrie this afternoon. I wonder if this beats the Holyrood debating chamber?

1308: Aberdeen slice through the Hearts rearguard with some neat passing but Sone Aluko's effort is weak as he is once again denied by the alert Marian Kello. The game, though, is warming up nicely...

1307: Hearts have shown more attacking intent in the opening four minutes of the second half than they did in the entire opening half. Jim Jefferies must have delivered a robust message to his troops at the break.

1304: Rudi Skacel fires in a howitzer from about 25 yards but Dons keeper Jamie Langfield superbly tips it over a for a Hearts corner. From the set-piece Marius Zaliukas outmuscles Considine but his headed effort is off target.

1303: The second half gets under way at Pittodrie.

1300: "If it was a boxing match, Aberdeen would be well on top on points. But, as we know, Hearts are capable of that sucker punch. So it's anybody's game"
BBC Radio Scotland pundit Craig Paterson

1252: @smare_14 tweets: "Hearts have been v poor. Too much going back to front! JJ will have a few choice words for them!" I wonder how powerful the Jim Jefferies 'hair-dryer' treatment is?

1250: Former Aberdeen striker and now BBC Scotland pundit Billy Dodds is waxing lyrical about Marian Kello's save from Sone Aluko's early strike at Pittodrie. Quite right too, it was an absolute corker!

Half time

1246: Aberdeen continue to swarm around the Hearts goal but lack a cutting edge to make the net bulge. We're into the final minute of an intriguing first half.

1242: @gaznanna tweets: "Re: new deal for Jamie Langfield? Are u mad? Worst AFC keeper for years."

1241: Hearts come within a whisker of breaking the deadlock as Stephen Elliott sees his shot on the turn whistle inches past the post.

1237: Sone Aluko finds himself in space wide on the right but he lacks his earlier composure and a promising Aberdeen opening is lost. Hearts appear to have survived the Dons onslaught; seven minutes until half-time.

Yellow card
Hearts defender Ismael Bouzid goes into the book for a crunching tackle on Steven Smith.

1233: We're experiencing a problem with the automatic refresh at the moment folks. Best to return to the old-fashioned F5 to refresh the page! Thanks.

1231: @macdonald26 tweets: "This is the second time the Scotland gaffer has been at Pittodrie in the past few weeks, keeping an eye on the Dons."

1228: Chris Macguire's movement is continuing to worry the Hearts defence but Craig Brown's men have yet to make the breakthrough their play merits.

1226: Milsom, Vernon and Maguire trade passes before the latter fires a shot at goal but Marian Kello continues to thwart the Dons. It remains goalless with about 20 minutes of the first half remaining.

1225: "It's not very pretty at the moment,"
BBC Radio Scotland commentator Liam McLeod

1224: Hearts are beginning to creep back into the game and Paul Hartley does well to clear from inside the penalty area, just as a sea of Jambos looked to pounce.

1223: "Usually bandages are white, but that one is red, very colour co-ordinated, and that one looks better." BBC Radio Scotland pundit Craig Paterson on Rory McArdle's new headgear

1221: The brave McArdle bullets in a header at goal but Kello is again equal to the task as he tips it away for a corner. Is he the most impressive keeper at the moment in Scotland's top flight?

1219: Rory McArdle races back onto the pitch sporting a nifty-looking red bandage on his napper after a clash of heads. He looks like a Basil Fawlty tribute act...

1216: Scotland manager Craig Levein is in the stand at Pittodrie this afternoon. I wonder if he's sizing up a few players ahead of the glamour friendly against Brazil in London on 27 March.

1214: Much of Aberdeen's impressive early play is coming down the left and they can count themselves unfortunate not to have nudged their noses in front.

1213: @macdonald26: "To keep Maguire would be a sign of good things to come for the Dons, along with Milsom and Langfield."

1210: Robert Milsom's deep cross evades Sone Aluko as the Dons continue to press for the opener.

1209: "The weather has taken its toll on the pitch and it's a little bit bobbly out there." BBC Radio Scotland pundit Craig Paterson

1207: I'm looking forward to seeing how Andrew Driver fares today. It's the pacey winger's first league start of the season. He's a thorn in the side of opposition defences when he's in the mood.

1206: The Dons have their tails up in the opening five minutes as they look to avenge that 5-0 mauling at the hands of the Jambos late last year.

1205: Here's a stat for you to chew over along with your bacon roll: Aberdeen are looking to win a third league game in a row for the first time since December 2008...

1203: Sone Aluko dances away from a couple of Hearts challenges in the box before firing in a shot that's brilliantly tipped away by Marian Kello for a corner. What a save!

1202: "This will be a tight one. A win for Hearts would take them above Rangers in second, while a Dons win would taken them above St Johnstone and Dundee United and a point behind Inverness in sixth place. So a win for either side would be an absolute godsend for either manager today." BBC Radio Scotland pundit Craig Paterson

1201: Hearts get us under way at Pittodrie, with the pitch looking a bit like actor Mickey Rourke's coupon in the film The Wrestler...

1157: Before we get to the game at Pittodrie, Rangers manager Walter Smith has urged the SPL to do more to help Scottish clubs in Europe. Smith wants help to ease fixture congestion.

1150: Hearts make five changes to the side that defeated Dundee United last weekend: Ian Black and Ruben Palazuelos are suspended; Lee Wallace, David Obua and Suso Santana are all out through injury. Andrew Driver, David Templeton, Ryan Stevenson, Craig Thomson and Adrian Mrowiec come in for the visitors.

1148: Paul Hartley returns to Aberdeen's starting line-up, replacing Derek Young, while Andrew Considine comes in for the absent defender Zander Diamond.

Aberdeen: Langfield, McNamee, McArdle, Considine, Smith, Jack, Hartley, Milsom, Aluko, Maguire, Vernon. Subs: Howard, Vujadinovic, Young, Paton, Magennis, Blackman, Anderson.
Hearts: Kello, Craig Thomson, Zaliukas, Webster, Jonsson, Templeton, Stevenson, Mrowiec, Driver, Skacel, Elliott. Subs: MacDonald, Elliot, Jason Thomson, Bouzid, Glen, Robinson, Prychynenko.
Referee: Mike Tumilty

1144: Now you know what's happening, here's how you get in touch. Tweet the commentary via the hashtag #bbcsportsound, ask me a question direct on Twitter or text me via 80295.

1143: Victory for Jim Jefferies's side would see them leapfrog Rangers and move into second place, having played three games more...

1142: Hearts are on the crest of a wave at the moment: sitting third in the table just two points behind Rangers. And they seem to have the measure of Aberdeen so far this season. When the sides met at Tynecastle in December, Hearts delivered some capital punishment to the Dons with a 5-0 thumping. The Jambos also secured maximum points with a single-goal victory at Pittodrie in October.

1141: First up, we've got Aberdeen v Hearts at Pittodrie. Then at 3pm it's relegation-threatened Hamilton v Dundee United, Hibs v Inverness and Kilmarnock v St Mirren.

1140: Good morning and welcome to our live coverage of today's Scottish Premier League action.

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Scottish Premier results

26 Feb 2011 23:59 UK

Scottish Premier table snapshot

As it stood on 26 Feb 2011 23:59 UK

Position Team P GD PTS
1 Celtic 26 44 64
2 Rangers 24 30 56
3 Hearts 27 19 55
4 Kilmarnock 27 7 39
5 Motherwell 27 -6 34
6 Inverness CT 27 1 33
7 Dundee Utd 24 -3 31
8 St Johnstone 25 -12 30
9 Aberdeen 27 -14 30
10 Hibernian 27 -15 28
11 St Mirren 27 -22 22
12 Hamilton 26 -29 15

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