Wins for Celtic, Dons and Terrors

  • Last Updated: August 13 2014, 22:14 BST

A review of Wednesday night's action in the Scottish Premiership, including wins for Celtic, Aberdeen and Dundee United.

Celtic's Nir Bitton celebrates his goal with team mate Virgil Van Dijk
Celtic's Nir Bitton celebrates his goal with team mate Virgil Van Dijk

Celtic began the defence of their Scottish Premiership title with a 3-0 win over St Johnstone at McDiarmid Park but not without some help and some controversy.

After a dismal and goalless first-half, a horror mistake by Saints defender Steven Anderson when he allowed himself to be dispossessed by Kris Commons allowed Anthony Stokes to fire the visitors ahead.

To the anger of the Saints players and fans, skipper Dave Mackay was shown a straight red card in the 75th minute by referee John Beaton for a foul on Hoops substitute Derk Boerrigeter inside the box with Nir Biton converting from the spot-kick as the Perth claims of a dive by the Dutchman continued.

Hoops midfielder Callum McGregor added a third in the 85th minute with a low drive which keeper Alan Mannus should have saved to compound a miserable night for the Scottish Cup winners, while the visitors, not at their best, will be pleased with the win that looked far from certain for much of the match.

Dundee United chalked up consecutive victories thanks to substitute Mario Bilate and his timely late winner against Motherwell at Tannadice.

Bilate struck in the 82th minute, meaning Jackie McNamara's side earned a deserved 1-0 win after they had done most of the pressing in the second half.

The summer signing hit a powerful drive from 25 yards which left Well keeper Dan Twardzik spinning as it found the top corner to help the Taysiders build on their opening-day win over Aberdeen.

Kilmarnock suffered defeat in the first match on their artificial pitch as goals from Peter Pawlett and Ryan Jack handed Aberdeen a 2-0 victory.

Rugby Park's new FieldTurf surface - which will host Scotland's rugby international against Tonga in November - did not give Killie any initial advantage as a team featuring four home debutants as well as Jamie Hamill, back after three years at Hearts, failed to recover from Pawlett's breakaway goal.

Killie had the better early chances and Niall McGinn hit the bar but the first half looked destined to finish goalless until Jonny Hayes broke away to set up Pawlett in the dying seconds.

The home side had a decent flurry of half-chances early in the second period but look like they have plenty to do to replace the 22 goals that Kris Boyd scored last season before leaving for Rangers.

And Jack killed off the contest in the 71st minute when he planted home a header following a wonderful cross by McGinn.

Partick ensured there would be no repeat of last season's problems at home as they notched up an emphatic win over Ross County in their opening game of the campaign.

Thistle had been forced to wait until a 3-1 triumph over Aberdeen in February to secure their first league victory at Firhill last term.

But they got off to a flier in the Scottish Premiership this time, thanks to strikes from Stuart Bannigan, Gary Fraser and Stephen O'Donnell, and a debut own-goal by Ben Frempah.

A strike from Ali Crawford and an unlucky own-goal conceded by Marc McAusland earned new boys Hamilton a deserved 2-0 victory against St Mirren.

Crawford was the inspiration for the visitors as they recovered from Saturday's opening day defeat at the hands of Inverness.

Saints are still searching for their first points of the campaign.

Inverness and Dundee played out a stalemate in the Highlands.

Neither side could claim to deserve the three points at the Caledonian Stadium and a sharing of the spoils from a goalless draw was inevitable.

Both sides remained unchanged from their respective opening-day matches. Inverness striker Billy McKay - amid reported interest from German side FSV Frankfurt - retained his place up front as he sought to add to his goal against Hamilton.