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Thursday 24 August 2017

Bhoys jeered off as gap is cut to four points

Celtic 0-0 Dundee

Celtic manager Ronny Deila during the game Photo: Reuters / Graham Stuart
Celtic manager Ronny Deila during the game Photo: Reuters / Graham Stuart

Celtic's lead at the top of the Scottish Premiership was cut to four points after a goalless draw with Dundee at Parkhead, which saw the home side booed off.

Dens Park boss Paul Hartley, who, with one eye on the Scottish Cup quarter-final tie with Rangers at Ibrox on Saturday, started with skipper Gary Harkins, top scorer Kane Hemmings and Greg Stewart on the bench, had a comfortable night against the lacklustre Hoops.

Indeed, defender Kostadin Gadzhalov missed a sitter with his head late in the game which would have given the Taysiders all three points.

With Aberdeen beating Dundee United 1-0 at Tannadice the title race is back on.

While Dundee were under-strength, Celtic also had a different look to their side although defender Dedryck Boyata kept his place after the club appealed the red card he picked up against Hamilton at New Douglas Park last Friday night.

In the five changes manager Ronny Deila made, number one keeper Craig Gordon returned with 18-year-old attacker Patrick Roberts making his first start since signing an 18-month loan deal from Manchester City.

Charlie Mulgrew made his 200th appearance for the Parkhead club with Tom Rogic and Stuart Armstrong also back in midfield.

Roberts showed his promise as early as the third minute when he drifted effortlessly past Kevin Holt and Gadzhalov only to see his drive blocked by another defender Julien Etxabeguren.

But Dundee, also missing injured former Celtic defender Darren O'Dea, looked comfortable as the match unfolded.

Celtic striker Leigh Griffiths had three unsuccessful attempts on goal but it was a dull affair.

Bain made a save from a Mulgrew free-kick on the half-hour mark following a trip by Dundee defender Paul McGinn on Armstrong to break the monotony.

Winger James Forrest, who has rejected a new contract offer, replaced Armstrong for the start of the second half but there was no discernible improvement with Gordon having to make a save from Craig Wighton's shot on the turn from 12 yards as the Dees became emboldened.

At the end, Gadzhalov somehow missed the target from just six yards out from a Stewart corner, before the final whistle brought jeers raining down on the home side from the fans.

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