Malik Tillman was on target over the weekend as he scored Rangers’ opening goal to lead to victory over St. Johnstone, while Cameron Carter-Vickers and Celtic had no problems disposing of Kilmarnock.
Rangers 4-0 St. Johnstone
Rangers continued their strong start to the season as they came away with a comfortable win over St. Johnstone at Ibrox Stadium.
Malik Tillman got the start and played very well, completing 89 percent of his passes and winning five duels along with taking two shots in his 67-minute showing. James Sands was not included in the 18-man squad for the game.
After some good chances to open the scoring at both ends of the field, the hosts finally broke the deadlock in the 32nd minute. Tillman, who scored the game-winning goal for the team in their Champions League tie with Union Saint-Gilloise with an amazing header, provided a near carbon copy to record his first league goal of the season. James Tavernier’s cross from the right side found the Bayern Munich loanee as he rose up to knock the ball past St. Johnstone goalkeeper Remi Matthews.
Rangers kept the momentum going in the second half and came very close to doubling their lead when Rabbi Matondo’s shot on the edge of the area came crashing off the woodwork.
However, they did score their second in the 62nd minute after some high pressure forced St. Johnstone to turnover the ball and Antonio Colak made them pay by putting the ball in the back of the net from inside the 12-yard box.
Scott Arfield made it 3-0 in the 80th minute when another slip up from the visitors allowed Rangers to go on the counter-attack. Matondo would supply the pass that allowed the Canadian to score.
Thomas Lawrence rounded out the scoring in the 83rd minute when Arfield centering pass gave the Welshman the opportunity to punch it past Matthews.
The win keeps Rangers in second place in the standings on nine points.
Kilmarnock 0-5 Celtic
Celtic maintained their hold on the top spot with a strong win over Kilmarnock at the BBSP Stadium Rugby Park.
Cameron Carter-Vickers had another strong outing for the champions as he completed 82 percent of his passes and won eight duels in his 90-minute shift.
The visitors were on the attack from the opening whistle and scored after seven minutes when Kyogo Furuhashi was on the spot to steer a cross from fellow Japanese teammate Daizen Maeda into the goal.
Celtic doubled their lead in the 35th minute when Maeda provided the ball to Jota who sent a blistering long-range shot into the back of the net.
Kilmarnock was in for a long day and it got even worse for them just before the halftime whistle when Moritz Jenz sent a circus-like strike past goalkeeper Sam Walker.
The Hoops were in complete control of the game as they added a fourth goal in the 76th minute when Carl Starfelt pounced on the ball to put it across the line. Giorgos Giakoumakis completed the rout in the 82nd minute with an overhead kick.
Celtic stays ahead of Rangers at the top of the Premiership standings on goal difference.
Elsewhere in the Scottish Premiership, Ian Harkes made his return to the starting lineup for Dundee United following suspension as they were thoroughly handled by Hearts in a 4-1 defeat.
Both Christian Ramirez and Dante Polvara saw no action as Aberdeen surrendered their lead to fall to Joe Efford and Motherwell in a 3-2 loss.
In the Championship, Brian Schwake was between the posts for Greenock Morton as they fell in a narrow 2-1 loss to Raith Rovers.
Down in League One, Emmanuel Johnson went the distance for FC Edinburg’s 4-2 win over Alloa Athletic.