Celtic hopeful of clinching SPL title vs. St. Johnstone

Celtic missed out on the chance to sew up the Scottish Premier League title last weekend, but it will have another opportunity to do so on Sunday when the Bhoys host St. Johnstone at Parkhead.

Neil Lennon's could have clinched the title against Rangers at Ibrox last Sunday, but they suffered a disappointing 3-2 loss in the famed Old Firm clash to keep the champagne on ice.

Lennon was quite critical of referee Callum Murray following the match as Celtic had two players sent off over the course of the 90 minutes. The Hoops boss was dismissed from the touchline ahead of the second half with no explanation from the officials.

"I spoke quite quietly, coldly to the referee in the tunnel," Lennon said. "I didn't swear, didn't point any fingers. I have witnesses. I do my team talk at halftime and was walking back out and got called back into the referee's room, so I can't do my job.

"And that to me is the most galling one of the lot. I went into see him at halftime and he said you were warned about your behavior, but I said what was wrong with my behavior in the tunnel and I never got an answer."

The Bhoys will be a bit thinner as they have go on with Cha Du Ri and Victor Wanyama, the red card recipients in the derby loss.

First-place Celtic has stumbled slightly of late, taking just a point from its last two matches. Fourth-place St. Johnstone is in fine form though, managing to go unbeaten with 14 points over its last six games.

A win against St. Johnstone wouldn't lock up the title for Celtic though, as they need to better Rangers' result against Motherwell on Saturday. A win for Motherwell would see the Steelmen go level with Ally McCoist's men on 57 points, in addition to allowing Lennon's side to clinch the title with just a point against St. Johnstone.

Also on Saturday, Dundee United hosts Dunfermline to Tannadice Park, Hearts welcome Aberdeen to Tynecastle Stadium, and Kilmarnock heads to St. Mirren Park for a clash against St. Mirren.

Sunday's other SPL tilt sees Inverness welcome lowly Hibernian to the Caledonian Stadium.