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Scotland round-up: Crucial win for Celtic

Published: Sunday 9 March 2003, 23.30CET
Celtic FC moved to within three points of leaders Rangers FC with an important 1-0 derby win.

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Published: Sunday 9 March 2003, 23.30CET

Scotland round-up: Crucial win for Celtic

Celtic FC moved to within three points of leaders Rangers FC with an important 1-0 derby win.

Celtic FC claimed a crucial win against local rivals Rangers FC in the Old Firm match to give the champions a realistic chance of retaining their Scottish Premier League title.

No margin for error
The 1-0 victory marked the end of a six-game unbeaten run in derby matches for Rangers manager Alex McLeish, and meant Martin O’Neill's side moved just three points behind their rivals with a game in hand.

Third time lucky
Welsh international striker John Hartson had already missed two presentable chances, shooting wide in the first half before failing to find the target with a header from a corner after the interval, but three minutes before the hour, from a pass by strike partner Chris Sutton, Hartson volleyed into the net for the game's decisive goal.

Hearts held
Heart of Midlothian FC remained in third place despite being held to a 1-1 draw at Livingston FC. Phil Stamp's powerful drive gave Hearts the lead after eight minutes, but Livingston salvaged a point through Argentinian Oscar Rubio a minute past the hour.

Kilmarnock comeback
Kilmarnock FC remained in fourth place after also being held as Dundee FC took a two-goal lead thanks to first-half strikes from Lee Wilkie and Steven Milne. However, the away side came back strongly in the second half, and Peter Canero brought Kilmarnock back into the match before creating Gary McSwegan's equaliser five minutes from time.

Early penalty
Aberdeen FC claimed a much-needed win at fellow strugglers Motherwell FC, with Paul Sheerin's seventh-minute penalty proving enough for the away side. Motherwell's Stephen Pearson was dismissed in added time as his side slipped to bottom place in the table.

Honours even
Dundee United FC moved off the bottom with a 1-1 draw at Hibernian FC, with Jim McIntyre cancelling out Tam McManus's opening goal to earn Dundee United a valuable point. Elsewhere, Dunfermline Athletic FC drew 0-0 with Partick Thistle FC.

Last updated: 10/03/03 0.06CET

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