Rangers thrash Motherwell to stay top while Celtic keep up the pressure

Rangers thrash Motherwell to stay top while Celtic keep up the pressure

Rangers extended their unbeaten Scottish Premiership start to nine matches with a convincing 5-1 win at Motherwell which keeps them top, while Celtic kept up the pressure with a 3-0 win over Hibernian.

James Tavernier converted two first-half penalties at Fir Park either side of Jordan Jones’ effort. Tavernier’s opening spot-kick was Rangers’ first in the Premiership in 11 months, while Motherwell have now given away nine penalties in 12 games this season.

Substitute Cedric Itten got his first Rangers goal with a fine finish from the edge of the area, and the Swiss forward then tapped in from Tavernier’s corner to put the visitors 5-0 up. George Edmundson’s late own goal was little consolation for the home side.

Celtic remain just one point behind their Glasgow rivals with a game in hand after cruising to a 3-0 home win against Hibernian. Neil Lennon’s side, like Rangers, are still unbeaten in the league.

Celtic winger Mohamed Elyounoussi celebrates after scoring his side’s third goal.

First-half goals from Callum McGregor and Albian Ajeti gave Celtic a 2-0 half-time lead and Mohamed Elyounoussi added a third with 11 minutes remaining. Hibs were punished after wasting several chances, with Christian Doidge, Kevin Nisbet and Joe Newell all missing the target from in front of goal.

Hibs stayed third despite the defeat, but have not won at Celtic Park for more than a decade. Aberdeen closed to within two points of Hibs after easing to a 3-0 win at 10-man Ross County.

Lewis Ferguson converted two second-half penalties after Marley Watkins’ header had given Aberdeen a 1-0 lead at the interval.

Ferguson scored his first from the spot after County skipper Iain Vigurs had been sent off for his trip on Ross McCrorie and struck again from 12 yards after Josh Reid had been penalised for handball.