DON ROBERTSON was the man in the middle as Celtic beat Hearts to move nine points clear at the top of the table.

The victory at Parkhead gives Celtic the major points advantage over Rangers, with Giovanni van Bronckhorst's men playing Dundee United tomorrow.

However, with the win Celtic all but mathematically secured the title with Rangers nine points behind with the same number of points to play for.

It would take Celtic to lose both final matches and drop a significant goal difference advantage, as well as Rangers winning their three remaining matches to turnaround the title race.

At Pakhead, Celtic made it 30 matches unbeaten in the league as they came back from an early set-back to claim victory, but there was no shortage of controversy.

Ellis Simms fired home a half-volley after just two-minutes to give Hearts a dream start in Glasgow. Carl Starfelt desperately appealed for offside, but replays showed the Swedish defender's foot was playing the Everton loanee onside.

Celtic levelled through Daizen Maeda after half-an-hour, but Hearts fumed over appeals for a foul in the build-up. Callum McGregor snatched the ball from Toby Sibbick, but challenged from behind and through the back of the Hearts man.

It looked to be a foul but Robertson waved play on and from the incident Jota charged forward to lay off to Maeda to level.

Seven minutes later and Celtic were in front as Kyogo Furuhashi headed home, but again Robertson and his assistants had a decision to make.

Jota headed back across goal for Kyogo who powered at goal where Craig Gordon clawed the ball away from goal. A goal was awarded and replays showed it was the correct call as the ball was just over the line when Gordon pushed it clear.

Robertson and Co had decisions to make over the first three goals of the match, and there was another for Matt O'Riley's strike to make it 3-1 as he curled into the far corner from inside the box. Liel Abada was stood in an offside position but didn't touch the ball as he rolled past him and into the bottom corner. Robertson adjudged the attacker to not have interfered with play.

Celtic could've had another before Giorgos Giakoumakis' late strike had it not been for an offside flag as Jota charged clear and dinked home after 79 minutes. It was a close call with camera angles not conclusive as Stephen Kingsley potentially played the winger onside.

Giakoumakis ended the contest with his finish in the closing moments, but again there were appeals for offside in the build-up. Much like the decision for Jota, it was very close with Giakoumakis laying-off on the edge of the box before the ball worked its way back to him to hammer home. The striker's foot looked to maybe be offside on the edge of the box.