Celtic celebrate Scottish title with comeback win over St Mirren


Luis Palma scored a late winner as Scottish champions Celtic twice came from behind to round off their triumphant Premiership campaign with a 3-2 win at home to St Mirren on Saturday.

St Mirren captain Mark O’Hara twice gave the visitors the lead at Parkhead but goals from Matt O’Riley and Kyogo Furuhashi meant Celtic were level come half-time.

The second half was a less incident-filled contest but when Palma turned in Anthony Ralston’s cross in the 86th minute, home fans were able to roar on Celtic ahead of the trophy presentation.

Palma’s goal led Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers to take off Joe Hart, with supporters giving the 37-year-old a rousing ovation in what was the former England goalkeeper’s final league game of his career.

Hart will now try to lift the seventh trophy of his three-year stint at Parkhead when Celtic face Glasgow arch-rivals Rangers in next week’s Scottish Cup final at Hampden.

Celtic kicked off having already secured their 54th Scottish league title with a 5-0 win at Kilmarnock on Wednesday that moved them to within one of Rangers’ record of 55.

But Celtic’s hopes of celebrating their 12th title in 13 years in front of their own fans suffered a setback in the seventh minute when they failed to clear a throw into the box and O’Hara lashed the ball low into the net.

O’Riley drew Celtic level in the 21st minute but six minutes later St Mirren were ahead again, O’Hara scoring from the penalty spot after Celtic defender Stephen Welsh bundled over Toyosi Olusanya inside the box.

Celtic, however, equalised again eight minutes before the break when Furuhashi turned in fellow Japanese star Reo Hatate’s cross at the near post.

Celtic ended the season eight points clear of second-placed Rangers after the Light Blues were held to a 3-3 draw by Hearts, who scored with the last kick of the match to ensure honours were even at Tynecastle.

The draw ended Hearts’ five-game losing streak against Rangers.

Lawrence Shankland gave Edinburgh club Hearts, already assured of third place, the lead in the first half only for Rangers to score three without reply after the break through Ross McCausland, Todd Cantwell and Fabio Silva.

But Dexter Lembikisa’s goal revived Hearts in the final 10 minutes and they drew level deep into stoppage time thanks to Kyosuke Tagawa’s superb volley.

Dundee and Kilmarnock drew 1-1 at Dens Park in Saturday’s other Premiership match.

Gary MacKay-Steven fired Killie in front in the 24th minute before Luke McGowan equalised for the hosts 13 minutes later.

Robbie Deas’s second yellow card, in the 84th minute, reduced Kilmarnock to 10 men and four minutes later McCowan missed a penalty.

With the Scottish Premiership split into a top and bottom six after 33 games, all the clubs in the lower half of the table will be involved when the league season concludes on Sunday, with already-relegated Livingston at home to Hibernian, Motherwell facing struggling St Johnstone and Ross County taking on Aberdeen