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Alarm bells sounding for Everton

Everton
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By ESPN Staff

Rangers and Celtic win

Rangers made it two wins from as many games away from home in the SPL with a 2-0 victory at Inverness Caledonian Thistle, Celtic answered the Gers' call with a comfortable 5-1 home win over Dundee United, while Motherwell's fine start to the season continued thanks to a late 1-0 win at St Mirren.

Caley proved a match for Rangers in the first half, fashioning a couple of decent chances, but had no answer once Nikica Jelavic rifled the away side ahead from the spot.

Jelavic opened the scoring just past the hour, after Ross Tokely had felled Steven Naismith in the box. Tokely was given a red card for his indiscretion and Rangers made full use of their man advantage - Maurice Edu firing home a rebound on 68 minutes to seal the three points after Jelavic's bid for a second goal from the penalty spot was thwarted.

It was a mixed day for the Gers, who also finished the clash with ten men after Edu was dismissed and also saw Bartley limp out with an injury.

Neil Lennon's delight at Celtic's thrashing of Dundee United at Parkhead was tempered by watching striker Gary Hooper taken up the tunnel on a stretcher during the second half.

The former Scunthorpe striker had headed the Hoops back into the lead just before the break after Johnny Russell had cancelled out Anthony Stokes' early opener. Further goals from Ki Sung-yueng, Joe Ledley and James Forrest clinched the points in what turned out to be procession.

However, the Celtic boss, already without Glenn Loovens, Emilio Izaguirre and Beram Kayal through injury, watched in dismay in the 63rd minute as Hooper immediately signalled to the bench his distress following a challenge from United defender Paul Dixon.

Tom Hateley's glorious stoppage-time free-kick kept Motherwell top of the table. St Mirren goalkeeper Craig Samson had denied the visitors with a string of superb saves, but Hateley curled home from 20 yards with virtually the final kick.

The home side had their fair share of possession and spells of superiority but could not seriously trouble Motherwell goalkeeper Darren Randolph. Hateley's match-winning intervention stole the headlines from Samson, who made six saves of note - the best coming from Nicky Law and Michael Higdon in the first half.

John Sutton scored his first goals for Hearts as the Edinburgh side warmed-up for their Europa League clash against Tottenham with a comfortable 3-0 defeat of Aberdeen.

After Aberdeen's Kari Arnason had hit the bar and Arvydas Novikovas had given Hearts a 24th-minute lead, Sutton scored his first goal since his summer move from Motherwell after 35 minutes.

The striker added his second after 52 minutes as the hosts claimed a morale-boosting first SPL win of the season ahead of Spurs' visit to Tynecastle on Thursday.

Andy Kirk scored the only goal of the game to hand Dunfermline 1-0 win at St Johnstone, who were left to rue a missed penalty from Liam Craig.

The Pars had defender John Potter sent off after 61 minutes as he conceded a penalty for a trip on home debutant Francisco Sandaza. But, with keeper Paul Gallacher saving Craig's spot-kick, Dunfermline had Andy Kirk's first-half strike against the run of play - his third goal in as many games - to thank for their first three points back in the SPL.

The win means last season's First Division champions remained undefeated for the campaign after draws against St Mirren and Inverness and ensured they were still unbeaten at McDiarmid Park in 16 years on league duty.

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