Celtic grabbed their first away win in the SPL since February with victory over Dundee United at Tannadice.

Kris Commons gave the champions an 11th-minute lead with a curling free-kick low into the bottom corner.

Georgios Samaras added a quickfire double to put the Hoops 3-0 up before the half-hour mark as they threatened to inflict a big defeat on their hosts.

Anthony Stokes deflected a late shot off Mark Millar to give Celtic a fourth and end the league campaign in style.

The emphatic victory means the champions finished the season 16 points clear at the top, with next weekend's Scottish Cup final to look forward to.

Manager Neil Lennon made four changes, with the departing Paddy McCourt given a rare start, while skipper Scott Brown played for 90 minutes as he builds up his fitness after a lengthy absence through injury.

United boss Jackie McNamara opted to put Jon Daly into the centre of defence in his final game, but the Rangers-bound striker had a nervy opening.

In the seventh minute he clattered into Commons outside the area, and when the free-kick was whipped in the ball came off Daly and almost spun past United keeper Radoslaw Cierzniak.

Daly then brought Commons crashing to the ground 30 yards from goal, and this time the Scotland midfielder curled the free-kick low around the wall and into the net.

Celtic kept up the incessant pressure and soon doubled their lead. Samaras cut into the box and his shot took a deflection of United defender John Souttar to leave the goalkeeper helpless.

United could have cut the deficit in the 26th minute when Fraser Forster had to rush off his line to block at the feet of Rory Boulding, before Mark Millar tested the Englishman with a decent drive.

However, a minute later Samaras grabbed his second and Celtic's third; the Greek striker heading in Commons's free-kick from close range.

The tempo dropped with the visitors comfortably leading, but on the hour mark Cierzniak pulled off a fantastic save to keep out Joe Ledley's powerful header, which was destined for the top left-hand corner.

In the 68th minute Daly tested Forster with a volley from 12 yards. But Celtic were firmly in control, with Gary Hooper heading over from a Samaras cross and Cierzniak making another fine save, this time from Celtic skipper Brown, whose volley almost sneaked inside the post.

Stokes completed the scoring with a drive which took a touch off Millar to beat Cierzniak, to give Celtic the perfect boost ahead of next Sunday's Hampden showdown with Hibs.

Lineup, Bookings (1) & Substitutions (6)

Dundee United

  • 01 Cierzniak
  • 03 Douglas
  • 04 McLean
  • 44 Souttar
  • 06 Flood Booked
  • 08 Rankin (Gauld - 62' )
  • 11 Mackay-Steven (Dow - 87' )
  • 14 Millar
  • 16 Armstrong
  • 09 Daly
  • 19 Boulding (Russell - 66' )

Substitutes

  • 31 Anderson
  • 17 Tornstrand
  • 10 Ryan
  • 38 Gauld
  • 07 Russell
  • 15 Gardyne
  • 18 Dow

Celtic

  • 01 Forster
  • 03 Izaguirre
  • 04 Ambrose
  • 06 Wilson
  • 23 Lustig
  • 08 Brown
  • 15 Commons (Stokes - 68' )
  • 16 Ledley
  • 20 McCourt (Rogic - 68' )
  • 09 Samaras (Atajic - 83' )
  • 88 Hooper

Substitutes

  • 24 Zaluska
  • 05 Gershon
  • 41 Fisher
  • 18 Rogic
  • 46 McGeouch
  • 10 Stokes
  • 37 Atajic
Ref: Beaton
Att: 8,717

Match Stats

Shots

16 21

On target

7 12

Corners

3 5

Fouls

13 12

Live Text Commentary

90:00 +1:01 Full time

Full Time The game is over, as the referee blows his whistle.

90:00 +0:19

Bahrudin Atajic fouled by Ryan Dow, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Anthony Stokes.

88:46

Joe Ledley challenges Ryan Dow unfairly and gives away a free kick. Direct strike on goal from the free kick comes in from Willo Flood.

87:29

Anthony Stokes produces a cross, Headed effort from deep inside the area by Bahrudin Atajic misses to the left of the goal.

87:05

Barry Douglas gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Scott Brown. Anthony Stokes takes the free kick.

86:31

Ryan Gauld is caught offside. Fraser Forster takes the free kick.

86:31 Substitution

Substitution Gary Mackay-Steven leaves the field to be replaced by Ryan Dow.

84:59

Assist by Emilio Izaguirre.

84:59 Goal scored

Goal! - Anthony Stokes - Dundee U 0 - 4 Celtic Anthony Stokes scores a goal from deep inside the penalty box to the bottom left corner of the goal. Dundee Utd 0-4 Celtic.

84:43

Anthony Stokes takes a short corner.

84:02

Kelvin Wilson restarts play with the free kick.

84:02 Booking

Booking Willo Flood is shown a yellow card for unsporting behaviour.

83:54

Joe Ledley fouled by Willo Flood, the ref awards a free kick.

83:25

Emilio Izaguirre produces a cross, comfortable save by Radoslaw Cierzniak.

82:41 Substitution

Substitution Georgios Samaras goes off and Bahrudin Atajic comes on.

81:42

Drilled right-footed shot by Georgios Samaras. Blocked by Brian McLean. Anthony Stokes takes a outswinging corner.

81:03

Scott Brown decides to take the corner short.

80:28

Georgios Samaras sends in a cross, clearance made by John Souttar. Scott Brown takes a shot. Save made by Radoslaw Cierzniak.

79:41

Outswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Barry Douglas, Kelvin Wilson manages to make a clearance.

79:20

A cross is delivered by Barry Douglas, clearance by Efe Ambrose.

77:40

Free kick awarded for a foul by Efe Ambrose on Johnny Russell. Direct free kick taken by Willo Flood. The ball is sent over by Stuart Armstrong, Headed effort from inside the area by Jon Daly misses to the left of the target.

76:52

The ball is crossed by Georgios Samaras, Header from deep inside the area by Gary Hooper goes harmlessly over the crossbar.

76:41

Centre by Emilio Izaguirre.

75:00

Unfair challenge on Mark Millar by Gary Hooper results in a free kick. Willo Flood takes the direct free kick.

73:32

Long range shot by Tom Rogic goes wide right of the target.

72:18

Barry Douglas challenges Scott Brown unfairly and gives away a free kick. Tom Rogic takes the free kick.

71:36

Gary Hooper produces a right-footed shot from long distance which goes wide right of the goal.

71:16

Georgios Samaras takes a shot. Save made by Radoslaw Cierzniak.

69:54

The ball is crossed by Brian McLean, Effort from inside the area by Ryan Gauld misses to the left of the goal.

68:29

Anthony Stokes takes a shot. Blocked by Brian McLean. Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Anthony Stokes played to the near post, clearance by Brian McLean.

68:08

Centre by Mikael Lustig, Jon Daly manages to make a clearance.

67:06 Substitution

Substitution Tom Rogic on for Patrick McCourt.

67:06 Substitution

Substitution Kris Commons leaves the field to be replaced by Anthony Stokes.

66:31

Stuart Armstrong takes a shot. Save by Fraser Forster.

65:09

Corner taken by Barry Douglas from the left by-line, Kelvin Wilson manages to make a clearance. Ryan Gauld takes a shot. Save by Fraser Forster.

65:09 Substitution

Substitution Johnny Russell replaces Rory Boulding.

61:49

Fraser Forster takes the free kick.

61:49 Substitution

Substitution Ryan Gauld on for John Rankin.

61:49

The assistant referee signals for offside against Gary Mackay-Steven.

60:27

Gary Hooper gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Radoslaw Cierzniak. Free kick taken by Radoslaw Cierzniak.

58:59

The ball is sent over by Emilio Izaguirre, blocked by Gary Mackay-Steven. Outswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Kris Commons, Joe Ledley takes a shot. Save by Radoslaw Cierzniak.

57:44

Scott Brown fouled by Willo Flood, the ref awards a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Mikael Lustig.

56:28

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Barry Douglas by Mikael Lustig. John Souttar restarts play with the free kick.

55:39

Mark Millar produces a drilled right-footed shot from 35 yards that went over the net.

54:18

Free kick awarded for a foul by Scott Brown on Mark Millar. Direct strike on goal from the free kick comes in from Barry Douglas.

52:44

Shot from 20 yards by Georgios Samaras. Gary Hooper is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Radoslaw Cierzniak takes the indirect free kick.

50:34

Gary Mackay-Steven has a drilled shot. Kelvin Wilson gets a block in.

49:54

Willo Flood has an effort at goal from outside the penalty area which goes wide right of the goal.

48:40

Georgios Samaras takes a shot from just inside the penalty box which clears the crossbar.

45:01

The referee starts the second half.

45:00 +0:42 Half time

Half Time The half-time whistle blows.

44:51

Long range effort by Kris Commons goes wide right of the net.

43:39

Emilio Izaguirre gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Gary Mackay-Steven. Willo Flood takes the free kick.

42:00

The ball is swung over by Willo Flood, Kelvin Wilson gets a block in.

39:31

John Rankin takes a weak shot and went wide of the right hand post. Georgios Samaras fouled by Barry Douglas, the ref awards a free kick. The ball is sent over by Kris Commons, Efe Ambrose has a headed effort at goal from deep inside the area missing to the right of the goal.

38:21

Free kick awarded for a foul by John Rankin on Joe Ledley. Kelvin Wilson restarts play with the free kick.

36:35

Emilio Izaguirre challenges Gary Mackay-Steven unfairly and gives away a free kick. Barry Douglas produces a shot on goal direct from the free kick, Fraser Forster makes a save.

35:33

Shot from long range by Stuart Armstrong goes wide of the left-hand upright.

33:47

Centre by Emilio Izaguirre, Radoslaw Cierzniak makes a comfortable save.

33:04

Free kick awarded for a foul by Scott Brown on Rory Boulding. Brian McLean takes the free kick.

32:22

Jon Daly is penalised for handball and concedes a free kick. Kelvin Wilson takes the direct free kick.

30:55

Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Barry Douglas, Header by Brian McLean from deep inside the penalty area misses to the left of the goal.

29:43

Gary Mackay-Steven produces a cross, save made by Fraser Forster.

28:32

Centre by Barry Douglas.

28:12

Free kick awarded for a foul by Kelvin Wilson on Rory Boulding. Stuart Armstrong takes the free kick.

26:19

The assist for the goal came from Kris Commons.

26:19 Goal scored

Goal! - Georgios Samaras - Dundee U 0 - 3 Celtic Georgios Samaras finds the back of the net with a headed goal from inside the six-yard box. Dundee Utd 0-3 Celtic.

25:43

Mark Millar concedes a free kick for a foul on Gary Hooper. Kris Commons takes the free kick.

25:10

Effort from 25 yards by Mark Millar. Fraser Forster makes a save.

24:36

Shot by Rory Boulding. Blocked by Efe Ambrose.

23:56

Long range effort by Kris Commons goes wide right of the target.

21:59

Right-footed shot by Gary Hooper went wide left of the net.

19:05

Barry Douglas delivers the ball.

18:44

The offside flag is raised against Georgios Samaras. Radoslaw Cierzniak restarts play with the free kick.

18:17

Drilled right-footed shot by Gary Mackay-Steven. Save by Fraser Forster.

16:13

The assist for the goal came from Georgios Samaras.

16:13 Goal scored

Goal! - Georgios Samaras - Dundee U 0 - 2 Celtic Georgios Samaras gets on the score sheet with a goal from just outside the box to the top right corner of the goal. Dundee Utd 0-2 Celtic.

16:10

Georgios Samaras takes a shot from 20 yards.

14:59

Gary Mackay-Steven is caught offside. Fraser Forster restarts play with the free kick.

14:37

Barry Douglas sends in a cross, blocked by Efe Ambrose.

12:32

Patrick McCourt fouled by Barry Douglas, the ref awards a free kick. Direct strike on goal from the free kick comes in from Kris Commons, save by Radoslaw Cierzniak.

11:53

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Stuart Armstrong by Joe Ledley. Willo Flood takes the free kick.

10:45 Goal scored

Goal! - Kris Commons - Dundee U 0 - 1 Celtic Kris Commons finds the net with a goal direct from the free kick from a long way out to the bottom left corner of the goal. Dundee Utd 0-1 Celtic.

10:05

Jon Daly challenges Kris Commons unfairly and gives away a free kick.

6:34

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Kris Commons by Jon Daly. The free kick is swung in left-footed by Kris Commons, Jon Daly gets a block in.

6:13

The assistant referee flags for offside against Rory Boulding. Fraser Forster restarts play with the free kick.

5:51

Rory Boulding fouled by Efe Ambrose, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Brian McLean.

4:14

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Mikael Lustig by John Rankin. Efe Ambrose takes the free kick.

2:42

Centre by Georgios Samaras, Jon Daly manages to make a clearance.

0:49

Rory Boulding challenges Kelvin Wilson unfairly and gives away a free kick. Fraser Forster takes the direct free kick.

0:00

The game kicks-off.

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