McDonald nets another double for Celtic

Qantas Socceroos striker Scott McDonald made it three goals in his past two games, as he led Celtic to a 3-1 win over Aberdeen and maintain their lead at the top of the Scottish Premier League.

Qantas Socceroos striker Scott McDonald made it three goals in his past two games, as he led Celtic to a 3-1 win over Aberdeen and maintain their lead at the top of the Scottish Premier League.

McDonald finished clinically twice in the last 20 minutes for his 15th and 16th goals of the SPL season, bringing his goals tally in all competitions to 18.

With the game poised at one apiece, McDonald smashed a first time shot past the keeper in the 72nd minutes and then in injury time, was sent through and slotted home through the keepers legs to seal the important win for Celtic.

The win leaves Celtic a point on top of the table ahead of Rangers, with next week-s Old Firm derby between the two teams, set to determine who wins the title. There are still three games to go.

Staying in Scotland, it wasn-t such a good weekend for a couple of Aussies with both James Wesolowski and Danny Invincibile forced off early in their games with injuries. Wesolowski lasted 26 minutes in Dundee United-s 2-1 win over Hibernian, while Invincibile played only 16 minutes before limping off in a 2-1 loss to Hamilton Academical. For Hamilton, Trent McClenahan played 66 minutes.

The English Premier League is hotting up with many Aussies in the thick of the relegation dogfight. Mark Viduka played 80 minutes in Newcastle United-s 3-0 loss to Liverpool; Brad Jones played a full game in Middlesbrough-s 2-0 defeat by Manchester United, while Richard Garcia plays later tonight against Aston Villa, a win very much needed to avoid the drop.

Fulham-s hopes of a place in the UEFA Cup next season were dealt a blow after crashing 3-1 at Chelsea. Schwarzer played a full game for Fulham, who have confirmed they will play three matches in Australia as part of their preparations for next season. Lucas Neill-s West Ham went above Fulham on the table after they won 1-0 away at Stoke City, as did Manchester City, who beat Vince Grella-s Blackburn Rovers 3-1. Both Neill and Grella played full games.

Meanwhile Tim Cahill played a full game, as Everton easily accounted for Sunderland 2-0, moving them up to fifth spot and almost certainly qualifying for a place in Europe next season.

There was heartbreak for a number of players in the English Championship with Adam Federici on the bench, as Reading played Birmingham City in the final league game of the season, with the winner guaranteed a place in the Premier League next season. It was Birmingham however that came out on top with a 2-1 win with Reading now up against Burnley in the promotion play-off-s race.

Burnley had Rhys Williams, on loan from Middlesbrough, on the park in their 4-0 win over Bristol City. The young defender has indicated that his international career could most likely be played with Wales after playing in their younger teams. He however can still play for Australia until such time that he plays a full international for Wales.

On loan pair Adrian Leijer and David Carney also faced the dreaded relegation as Norwich lost 4-2 at Charlton Athletic which ensured they drop down to League One next season. Leijer started but was replaced after 40 minutes, while Carney remained on the bench. Elsewhere Nick Carle played a full game as Crystal Palace held promotion chasers Sheffield United to a 0-0 draw, while Mile Sterjovski did not feature in Derby County-s line-up that lost 3-1 at Watford.

In Germany, Karlsruhe-s relegation is almost assured after they drew 0-0 at home against Energie Cottbus, who is four points above them and just out of the relegation zone. Josh Kennedy played a full game and missed a great chance in the first half when he headed over the bar. There was better news for Kennedy-s former club Nurnberg in the Bundesliga 2, with Dario Vidosic playing a full game and scoring the winning goal in the 23rd minutes that lifted them into 3rd spot and the chance for promotion. The top three go up and there are four games to go.

Scott Chipperfield played a full game for FC Basel, but Basel blew a two-goal lead to draw 2-2 with FC Sion and fall further behind leaders FC Zurich in the Swiss Championship. They are three points behind FC Zurich with five games to go.

Sivasspor is starting to feel the nerves of a potential first ever Super Liga title in Turkey, after they went down 2-1 at Gaziantepspor, with Michael Petkovic playing a full game. Sivasspor however remain top by a point after nearest challengers Besiktas went down 2-1 at home to Fenerbahce.

Staying in Turkey, Harry Kewell-s hopes of a title with Galatasaray are all but over after they went down 2-0 to Hacettepe; while Bruce Djite came off the bench and scored within a minute, but its wasn-t enough as Genclerbirligi lost 3-1 to Istanbul BB. Mile Jedinak missed the game, while James Troisi played a full game.

In Holland, Brett Holman came on in the 58th minute, as AZ Alkmaar lost 3-0 away at FC Twente, while Jason Culina played a full game, as PSV Eindhoven drew 1-1 at home with NEC Nijmegen. There is one game to go in the Eredivisie with PSV needing a point in final game, which will be Culina-s last for PSV before returning home to Australia, to secure a place in the European Champions League qualifying next year.

Luke Wilkshire played a full game in Dinamo Moscow-s 2-0 win over Spartak Moscow; Michael Beauchamp came on in the 82nd minute in Aalborg-s 3-0 loss to FC Copenhagen; Ante Covic played a full game for Elfsborg in a 1-1 draw with Brommapojkana; Chris Coyne was on the bench as Colchester United won 2-0 at Yeovil Town in its final game of the season, while Neil Kilkenny will play in the League One play-offs against Millwall, after Leeds United won 3-0 against Northampton.

Meanwhile in injury news, Mark Bresciano continues to be troubled by a back injury and missed Palermo-s 5-1 thrashing of Cagliari, while Carl Valeri missed Grosseto-s match in the Serie B, a 2-0 win against Cittadella.