Samaras strikes twice in Hoops win

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Celtic secured a convincing 3-0 victory over Aberdeen to restore their two-point lead at the top of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League this afternoon.

Defending champions Rangers had climbed to the summit with a 3-1 win at Falkirk in the lunchtime kick-off, but Celtic leapfrogged their arch rivals with victory at Parkhead.

Georgios Samaras scored twice in the emphatic win over 10-man Aberdeen.

Scott McDonald gave the home side a first-half lead and Samaras scored his first goal six minutes after the break.

Dons defender Jerel Ifil was sent off by referee Mike Tumilty after appearing to kick out at the Greece international as they clashed on the touchline before Samaras bundled in his second in a second-half siege.

Kris Boyd edged closer to Henrik Larsson's Clydesdale Bank Premier League goalscoring record when he brought his own tally to 151 as Rangers defeated bottom club Falkirk 3-1.

But the striker, who now sits seven short of the Swede's record, was denied his hat-trick when he was replaced due to a thigh injury two minutes before a penalty was converted by Kenny Miller.

Pedro Moutinho had pulled a goal back for the SPL bottom side but Walter Smith's men, who have a game in-hand over Celtic, held on for the win.

Elsewhere, Anthony Stokes and Colin Nish netted as Hibernian remained third with a 2-0 defeat of Motherwell at Easter Road.

Dundee United are fourth after a narrow 3-2 win over ninth-placed St Mirren, while Kevin Kyle scored the only goal as Kilmarnock won 1-0 at St Johnstone.

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Jerel Ifil
Anthony Stokes
Henrik Larsson
Premier League
Scott McDonald
Jerel Ifil
Kevin Kyle
Kenny Miller

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