Bhoys top of the pile
By Simon Fudge
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Celtic have leapfrogged Hearts at the top of The SPL with a 4-2 win at Dundee United.Celtic have leapfrogged Hearts at the top of the Scottish Premier League following a 4-2 win at Dundee United.
In front of a large Tannadice crowd, which included Hearts' majority shareholder Vladimir Romanov on Sunday afternoon, it was The Terrors that took a surprise lead after four minutes.
Barry Robson's fierce corner from the right went off the head of Celtic's Chris Sutton at the near post to give the Tayside club the lead.
Yet, it was from that point forward that The Bhoys looked the more dominant side, and they levelled matters just after the quarter hour mark.
Sutton's fine dummy to Paul Telfer's forward pass allowed John Hartson to strike the ball under the diving Derek Stillie in the Dundee United goal for 1-1.
That set up an incredible spell midway through the half, with three goals scored in the space of four minutes.
Sutton's deflection to Shaun Maloney's goal-bound strike gave Celtic the lead on 28 minutes, but the home side quickly responded on the half hour mark.
Collin Samuel took Mark Wilson's pass before turning and striking past a bemused Artur Boruc in the Celtic goal for 2-2.
The visitors, however, restored their lead two minutes after that, as Maloney's corner from the left flicked off Bobo Balde's head and the back of Dundee United's Alan Archibald before finding the back of the net.
The second half saw Celtic look far more dangerous going forward, despite Samuel's volley that flew just wide of goal soon after the restart.
Gordon Strachan's men sealed the points with a fourth goal in the dying stages, as substitute Stephen Pearson slid home Stilian Petrov's low cross at the far post.
The result takes The Bhoys to the summit of The SPL for the first time this season following Hearts' defeat to Edinburgh rivals Hibernian on Saturday.
Click below for a match summary:
Dundee United 2-4 Celtic