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Scottish Premiership

Almondvale (ATT 3,561) 23rd March 2008 - Kick off 14:00 Ref: C Thomson

Gretna Gretna vs Celtic Celtic

Gretna 0


Celtic 3

Bhoys back to winning ways

Celtic close gap on leaders to three points

By James Pearson.   Last Updated: 23/03/08 4:05pm

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McDonald: Opening goal

McDonald: Opening goal

Celtic returned to form on Sunday with a much-needed 3-0 success over crisis club Gretna in the SPL.

Scott McDonald, Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink and Georgios Samaras all scored as Celtic ended their mini-slump to exert some pressure back on Rangers.

The visitors were frustrated for much of the first half at Almondvale, but made the breakthrough on the stroke of half-time.

One-touch finish

A long ball from deep found Vennegoor of Hesselink and he headed the ball on for McDonald who calmly slotted home past Gregg Fleming with a neat finish.

There was a scare for the Parkhead side three minutes into the second half when Gretna midfielder Brendan McGill, finding himself with space at the edge of the Celtic box from Ryan Badacchino's pass, drove just wide of the target.

Gretna were lively after the interval, but their resistance was finally broken in the second half when Vennegoor of Hesselink headed home from close range on 70 minutes.

The visitors added the icing on the cake late on with Samaras' deft finish from Aiden McGeady's testing left wing cross wrapping up a fine afternoon's work for Gordon Strachan's side.

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Scottish Premiership

Scottish Premiership
Pos Team P Pts
1 Celtic 33 79
2 Aberdeen 33 71
3 Inverness CT 32 55
4 Dundee United 32 49
5 St Johnstone 33 48
6 Dundee 33 44
7 Hamilton Academical 33 43
8 Partick Thistle 33 38
9 Kilmarnock 33 38
10 Ross County 33 37
11 Motherwell 33 31
12 St Mirren 33 21