SUMMARY: Celtic got their first three points of 2013 after another irregular performance against Motherwell. The 0-0 looked a certainty until McLean whistled a penalty for Motherwell. This brought a sense of fury to the hosts, and after Forster's top save, they tried harder until they got the opener, ten minutes from full time. Motherwell managed to get themselves in some interesting positions up front, but they couldn't have a final attempt as their best chance had already passed away. Good start in terms of points for Celtic, 9 points in front of their closer rivals in the SPL. Have a nice Wednesday and enjoy the SPL's football holidays!
St Johnstone 1-0 Dundee (Craig, min.33)
Celtic 1-0 Motherwell (Hooper, min.80)
Aberdeen 2-2 Dundee United (Vernon, min.11; McGinn, min.53// Gunning, min.20; Langfield (og), min.34)
St Mirren 1-1 Kilmarnock (McGowan (p), min.68// Kelly (p), min.5)
90+4' Celtic get a corner and Samaras defends the ball. The referee whistles the end of the game. Full time.
90+2' McGeouch and Watt keep Celtic's posession in front, they assist Hooper, whose pass is shooted by Wanyama. The Kenyan's fierce attempt hits a Motherwell defender, but Celtic get the ball back quickly.
90' 4 minutes of injury time.
88' Lasley shoots, it's deflected by Rogne. The corner kick is headed by Lasley himself, but his attempt is poor.
Celtic try to see out the rest of the match while Motherwell look for their last chance to gain a point. Lennon has adopted a more defensive approach to avoid Motherwell's attacks from both wings.
84' Ojamaa and Angol are off, Daley and McHugh are in.
Motherwell will introduce the pacey Omar Daley while they try to get a late equaliser.
83' Efe Ambrose makes room for Thomas Rogne.
82' Kris Commons makes way for Dylan McGeouch.
Dylan McGeouch will be Celtic's next change.
80' GOOOOOOOOAAAAAALLLL!!! CELTIC SCOOOOOOREE!! IT'S GARY HOOOOOOOPEEER. Celtic punch first after a fine counterattacking move, Samaras assisted and the English striker put the ball past Randolph with a low shot.
78' Celtic fail to create any danger with another corner kick. Motherwell start another counterattack... no midfield again.
76' What a fine save from the Englishman!!! He dives down the right to avoid Motherwell's first goal. Celtic Park erupts. Murphy's attempt was decent, but Forster was excellent.
75' Wanyama is booked after a protest on the referee decision to award a penalty. Forster is booked too.
74' Murphy is fouled inside the area, according to Mr McLean.
73' Motherwell attack now, but Humphrey's cross is caught by Forster. Celtic have lots of attacking men right now, Motherwell use this to create their own chances. No midfield in either side.
72' Beram Kayal is substituted by Tony Watt.
71' Hateley's shot goes out right, off target.
Tony Watt will be introduced soon.
69' Commons assists Samaras inside the box and the Greek's cross is blocked. The ball rebounds on him and it's a goal kick.
Paul McGowan's penalty draws the game in Paisley. St Mirren 1-1 Kilmarnock
66' Kris Commons surprising right-footed shot almost surprises Randolph, but the Irishman finally gets the ball.
A former Celt, Nial McGinn, gets the equaliser for Aberdeen at Pittodrie. Aberdeen 2-2 Dundee United
Celtic keep looking for their first goal while Motherwell are really comfortable defending the draw. Once again, the first team to score at Celtic Park will surely get the three points.
61' Wanyama trots off the pitch without his boot, he's got some pain but he recovers and enters the pitch again.
60' Corner for Celtic, the ball is cleared by Motherwell's defence, and Kayal volleys it out left. Decent effort.
58' Good move from Motherwell, combining well throughout Celtic's box boundaries. Angol assists Lasley, and his shot goes out left. A great build up that lacked a better finished.
56' Another clear chance for Ambrose, but his header is caught easily by Randolph. Celtic are pressing to get the opener.
54' Celtic get a corner after a long build up. They get another corner after Randolph saves Samaras left-footed cross.
53' Ojamaa is booked for a late challenge on Ambrose.
51' Celtic counterattack promisingly but Samaras' finally slows it and the momentum fades away...
50' Efe Ambrose looks injured as Motherwell dangerously attack from the left. The hosts' defence clears the ball out.
49' Beram Kayal is booked after some angry words with the referee.
46' The second half is underway
15:59. Subs: Zaluska, Rogne, Chalmers, McCourt, McGeouch, Nouioui, Watt. If the situation doesn't change, one of this men will be introduced.
15:57. Meanwhile, the game at Perth has finished with the same result we commented on before. St Johnstone 1-0 Dundee, this result piles more misery on Smith's men, bottom of the table with just 12 points out of 21 games.
HALF TIME A 0-0 home draw at half time. It's a familiar feeling for Celtic. They've tried to outpace Motherwell during the first minutes, but the visitors have managed to keep their goal safe thanks to Randolph's goalkeeping skills. Thus, the frustration grows while Celtic's energy fades a little bit, this has been used by Motherwell to try some counterattacking moves lead by their quick wingers. Murphy looks in good form and could have put his team in front had not been for a good save from Forster.
Neil Lennon needs to get his team back for the business if he wants his men to achieve a much needed breakthrough that would let them play with less pressure.
Stuart McCall's gameplan should remain the same. The first 10-15 minutes of this second half will dictate be key for their chances to upset Celtic at their home turf, again.
45+1 Half time
45' Ambrose at it again!!! He gets a really good chance after Randolph fails to catch a ball. The Nigerian fails from 2 yards and it's another wasted chance for Celtic.
43' Ambrose dances out of Motherwell's pressure, he assists Samaras. The Greek runs until the end of the pitch and his cross goes out before anyone can head it. Goal kick. Some chanting at Celtic Park but the atmosphere is, like Celtic's display, cold despite their good intentions.
41' Samaras shoots from outside the box, about 15 yards of Randolph's goal. The Irish keeper saves comfortably the Greek's low shot.
Celtic are trying to score their first goal just before the half time whistle. They lack the pace they showed during the opening minutes, but they are still a dangerous threat to Motherwell. On the other hand, Jamie Murphy's moves give Celtic some work to do this afternoon.
39' Kris Commons shot goes over the bar.
38' Samaras' attempt is cleared off the line.
36' Jamie Murphy shots after going past Kayal, saved by Forster. The Scottish forward is showing great confidence today.
Aberdeen 1-2 Dundee United
St Mirren 0-1 Kilmarnock
St Johnstone 1-0 Dundee
33' Mulgrew is booked after a mistimed challenge when Celtic chased the ball in Motherwell's half.
31' Corner kick for Motherwell after a good counterattacking move lead by Jamie Murphy. Nicky Law is at the end of the corner but his shot isn't even on target.
28' Good build up from Motherwell ends up in a goal kick. Stuart McCall's men have good ball-playing footballers, but they lack a cutting edge against the best defenders in the league.
25' Samaras tries to cross but it's blocked. Another corner kick for Celtic. Kris Commons' cross is missed by everyone, goal kick. Still 0-0 at Celtic Park.
21' Celtic get a costless kick, 40 yards from goal, slightly to the left. Mulgrew's cross finds Ambrose, but the Nigerian's attempt fails to hit the target, it goes out left.
19' Lasley gets some space and assists Murphy. The Scot's shot goes way over the bar. He claims a corner kick should have been given, but the referee waves the game on.
16' Celtic move the ball around while Motherwell try to find their feet into the game. Wanyama shoots from distance ... and it's a goal kick for Motherwell.
Almost 70% possession for Celtic, with 5 shots and 4 corners to their name. Motherwell haven't shown their best form yet.
12' Ambrose tries a long cross but overhits it a bit, but Celtic get the ball back quickly.
9' Good effort from Commons from the left hand side. The Scot is back in the starting XI and he wants to grab the chance with both hands. Celtic are trying to maintain a pacey rhythm from the start.
7' One way traffic at Celtic Park. The hosts get a costless kick at the right edge of Motherwell's box. Mulgrew's attempt is saved by Randolph.
Kilmarnock get the first goal, Liam Kelly's penalty puts them ahead in Paisley. St Mirren 0-1 Kilmarnock
4' Celtic are trying to press Motherwell from the start, they got their first corner but they failed to create much danger.
1' And the game is underway at Celtic Park!
Jock, from Celtic Park, (jock_1888) doesn't think that we'll see much of a contest this afternoon, he predicts: 4-0 Hooper 2 commons 1 Charlie 1.
Ramey (@ramey01), from Belfast, expects another goal feast: 4-1 3 Hooper, Samaras.
14:52. The game at McDiarmid Park is 1-0 at half time. This result would leave Dundee in a difficult position, with a 9-point gap between them and Ross County, 11th with a game in hand.
14:49. The other SPL games today are:
14:45. Celtic are currently leading the league by 6 points with a game in hand. Second-placed ICT had their derby game against Ross County postponed due to a waterlogged pitch.
14:41. Henrik Ojamaa is partnering Murphy up front, but he's still trying to find the form that made him impress during his first months in Scotland. His role in the team has to improve if he wants to successfully replace Jamie Murphy once he has left.
14:38. One of Motherwell's top players is Jamie Murphy, with 10 goals, he is having the best season of his career in goal scoring terms... and will leave Fir Park soon. Murphy has had talks with Sheffield United and looks on his way to the League 1 after his appearance at Celtic Park.
14:30. Celtic won against Motherwell the last time they played at Fir Park. Hooper and Adam Cummins own goal made life easier for the Celts in Lanarkshire.
14:20. Motherwell was the place where Celtic discovered one hidden gem last year.
14:15. A man who won't be playing for Celtic soon. Rabiu Ibrahim is close to leaving Celtic with Kilmarnock being his more likely destination. He'll sign a two-year contract with Kenny Shiels' men. He is away with his national team to play the AFCoN and will head to Ayrshire when he returns to Scotland.
14:12. Motherwell XI to face Celtic: Randolph, Hammell, Law, Hateley, Humphrey,Ojamaa, Murphy, Lasley, Ramsden, Kerr, Francis-Angol
14:09. Celtic XI to face Motherwell: Forster, Matthews, Ambrose, Wilson, Izaguirre, Commons, Wanyama, Kayal, Mulgrew, Hooper, Samaras.
14:05. It's been more than four years since Motherwell won at Celtic Park. That afternoon, Simon Lappin's goal seemed to put an end to Celtic's league title hopes. The visitors won 0-1 but Celtic were still able to clinch the title after a fine late run where they beat Rangers twice to finally achieve their goal at Tannadice.
14:03. Motherwell bounced back to get a point against Kilmarnock. They were 0-2 with 30 minutes to go, but they finally drew 2-2 thanks to Jamie Murphy and Henrik Ojamaa's goals.
14:01. As we all know, Celtic ended 2012 with a 1-0 defeat against Hibs at Easter Road. Leigh Griffiths' early goal was enough for Pat Fenlon's men to get the 3 points against a disappointing Celtic team that tried hard late on.
14:00. Welcome back, ladies and gentlemen, Bhoys and girls, here we are, at the edge of another Celtic game, the first one this year. It will be the last in two weeks as the winter break gives the teams some time to relax and prepare themselves for the rest of the season. Will Celtic give the home fans some good football to cheer on? Will Stuart McCall's men shock them and repeat the feats of Kilmarnock and ICT? We'll start to see the answers in less than an hour.