Celtic bounced back from their Champions League disappointment by defeating Kilmarnock 3-1 at home in the cinch Premiership.

Brendan Rodgers’ men looked eager to atone for their midweek loss to Lazio and were two goals ahead at half-time through Reo Hatate and Luis Palma.

David Watson got one back for Kilmarnock midway through the second period before Greg Taylor added a third to send Celtic seven points clear at the top of the table after a fifth consecutive league win.

Rodgers made two changes from the Lazio match. In came Cameron-Carter Vickers and Palma, with Nathaniel Phillips and Hyun-jun Yang starting on the bench.

Kilmarnock also made two changes from their draw with St Mirren. There were starting places for Robbie Deas and Watson who replaced Innes Cameron and the injured Kyle Magennis.

Celtic started on top and had the ball in the net within five minutes but Kyogo Furuhashi had strayed into an offside position before finishing well.

Kilmarnock’s response was a curling effort from Danny Armstrong that arced beyond the far post before former Killie defender Taylor came close with a half-volley.

Celtic moved in front after 22 minutes after great play from Hatate. The Japanese fastened on to a quick free-kick from Callum McGregor, burst past Watson before finishing low in the corner.

Hatate almost came close to doubling his tally with an acrobatic volley that was well saved before Palma stretched Celtic’s lead after 33 minutes.

The winger attempted a pass to Hatate only for the ball to rebound back to the Honduran who took advantage to smash in an unstoppable shot.

Celtic started the second half again on the offensive and Hatate’s run and shot was deflected narrowly wide of goal by Kilmarnock defender Lewis Mayo.

Hatate then thought he had won a penalty after he and Watson tangled at the edge of the Kilmarnock box. Before it could be taken, however, the VAR, David Dickinson, asked referee Matthew MacDermid to have a second look and the decision was overturned.

Hatate was involved in most of Celtic’s promising attacks and only an alert save from William Dennis prevented him from adding a third goal.

Kilmarnock grabbed an unlikely lifeline after 72 minutes. Vassell and Alistair Johnston clashed as they chased down a long ball but play was allowed to go on and Liam Polworth teed up Watson who finished well.

The visitors passed up a good chance to draw level when Stuart Findlay nodded wide from a free-kick and that proved costly when Taylor tucked in Celtic’s third after Daizen Maeda had flicked on Matt O’Riley’s corner.

Maeda was then denied by Dennis after running the length of the pitch, with James Forrest unable to convert the rebound.

Tony Docherty insisted Josh Mulligan should never have been shown a straight red card in a pulsating cinch Premiership contest withvat Dens Park.

The game was locked at 1-1, after Amadou Bakayoko’s opener for the home side was cancelled out by a Daniel Armstrong penalty, when midfielder Mulligan was given his marching orders by referee David Munro for bringing down the Killie scorer.

After the break, it looked like Armstrong had secured the win for the visitors when he struck again late on but deep in stoppage time, home substitute Zak Rudden pounced to snatch a draw with Killie boss Derek McInnes also shown a red card.

Docherty was pleased with his team’s resilience to come from behind to snatch a point against his former long-time managerial partner’s team.

However, he was fuming over the Mulligan dismissal.

Docherty said: “I’m delighted with my team to come back from a game where you are 2-1 down, down to 10 men and nine minutes to go.

“I thought it was never a red card and I said that to the referee.

“Yes, it was a foul and a booking. It’s about consistency – if that’s the decision for that tackle then there should have been seven or eight red cards today.

“I thought we were harshly treated today but I don’t want to be talking about officials – I want to talk about my team and they showed resilience in absolute spades.”

Derek McInnes admitted he apologised to referee Munro after his “bizarre” red card at the end of the game.

The Killie boss was trying to get the ball back to his players but it had not gone out and the official dismissed him for entering the field of play without permission.

McInnes said: “I was convinced the ball was out and all I was trying to do was get the ball back to my player. I wasn’t trying to stop an attack, I wasn’t trying to be clever.

“The referee said he didn’t want to send me off but it is a technicality as I entered the field of play without permission.

“It was a bit bizarre, to be honest. I am convinced the ball was out but it spun back in. So I have apologised to the referee.”

While disappointed with the red card shown to him, McInnes was more frustrated that his team had not managed to see the game out against the 10 men of Dundee.

The manager added: “We said at half-time that it is not a given when teams go down to 10 men.

“We were just conscious of not giving up set-plays and for us to lose two set-plays, particularly the one at the death, is so disappointing.”

Kilmarnock manager Derek McInnes revealed he had received an apology from referee Kevin Clancy after his side were denied a late equaliser in a 1-0 defeat to Ross County at Rugby Park.

With just five minutes left, Stuart Findlay looked as if he had cancelled out Simon Murray’s opener when he headed home .

However, referee Clancy had already blown to stop the game and award a penalty to Kilmarnock – which Danny Armstrong the failed to convert.

Clancy had already awarded County a penalty in a dramatic match, but that decision was reversed after VAR Greg Aitken sent the referee to look at the pitchside monitor.

Killie boss McInnes said: “Kevin (Clancy) apologised and admitted he made a huge mistake. These guys are serious about their profession so he will not be feeling good about himself.

“An apology is something. He said he wasn’t expecting Stuart Findlay to score the goal, but it is not his job to expect things.

“We should be expecting the referee to let the phase of play continue as we are told at every meeting.

“That is why VAR is supposed to be there. If he has blown before the ball has crossed the line that is a penalty, but the laws are wrong and we should be able to reverse it.

“The first penalty was also ridiculous. The boy went down too easy and that was also the wrong decision. Thankfully VAR has reversed that call.”

McInnes added: “By his own admission the referee has made a huge mistake. Then to compound things, Danny (Armstrong) has missed the penalty when he has been brilliant from the spot for us.

“It should have been a point, but due to us not being at our best and the referee not being at his best we have nothing from the game.”

Ross County manager Malky Mackay, though, felt the officials had made the right call, but admitted he had sympathy for McInnes.

“I spoke to fourth official Craig Napier about it. He said the referee blew clearly and early after Josh Reid pulled the shirt – which he did,” Mackay said.

“It was a penalty. As soon as he saw it he gave it. That happens before (Stuart) Findlay headed the ball, so it’s a penalty right away.

“That’s what we judge it on. He’s done the correct thing. If I’m Derek I’d be feeling aggrieved – but I feel aggrieved every time a penalty is given right now, but that’s the rules and they were followed.”

Mackay was frustrated his side did not put the game to bed before the late drama, with Jordan White missing a glorious opportunity.

“I’ve got four forwards here I am really happy with. We’ve scored goals so far, but we are also not being clinical enough,” Mackay said.

“We had great chances at Celtic Park, against St Johnstone and against Rangers. We have got to take these chances – I’m not talking about half chances.

“It was a centre-forward’s dream after Jack Baldwin did so well to lay it on a plate six yards out. He needs to stick it in the net, but Jordan (White) doesn’t do it.

“At 2-0 – the place dampens. This is a tough place to come at the best of times.

“But I am really proud of my team, because it’s a real statement of intent coming to Kilmarnock and winning like that.”

Motherwell boss Stuart Kettlewell hailed the resilience of his squad after they battled back from a goal behind to defeat Kilmarnock 2-1 in the cinch Premiership.

Marley Watkins broke the deadlock after 12 minutes and Killie could and should have added to their advantage in the first half.

Kettlewell’s side were much improved after the break, however, and Dan Casey levelled matters before Harry Paton netted in the seventh minute of stoppage time to take the Steelmen joint top of the table.

The Motherwell boss has faced an injury crisis at the club in recent weeks, with Conor Wilkinson the latest to face a spell on the sidelines.

Despite that, the Steelmen demonstrated all their fighting qualities after the break to claim an outstanding victory.

“We’re delighted. I think you are delighted with three points at any stage in this league, but especially after the first 45 minutes where I just didn’t feel we were at the races,” Kettlewell said.

“We had a few tweaks and changes to our set-up because of the tough week that we’ve had – we’ve had a really difficult spell trying to make sure we can put a team on the park.

“That’s why people pay their money, they want to see their team score a last-minute winner.

“Without getting too nostalgic about it, I think your team should be an identification as to what you are as a person.

“I always demand resilience and good reaction from us. Even if one or two were in the dressing room at half-time feeling a bit sorry for themselves with what we said or the changes we made – it is always with the right intention.”

Kettlewell also confirmed that defender Ricki Lamie is set to depart the club, with a move to Dundee on the horizon.

Lamie has yet to feature for Motherwell in the Premiership this season.

“There looks like a situation where Ricki could be on the move and, again, if I was sitting as a selfish guy I’d be saying I want to keep as many senior players as I can,” Kettlewell said.

“You can see we’ve got six teenagers in our squad today, two starting and four on the bench. I need as many senior players as I can get.

“Though to alter and readdress the balance, it’s a situation that probably will happen and whether that’s the opportunity to free up some up funds for us to see if we can bring in another attack-minded player.

“That’s certainly something we are looking at. There’s nothing concrete in terms of an incoming but it’s looking likely there will be an outgoing.”

Derek McInnes was left frustrated as his Kilmarnock side fell to defeat from a commanding position.

Killie suffered their first loss of the new campaign after conceding with the final kick of the ball at Fir Park and McInnes is keen to ensure that his players bounce back quickly

“It’s a really disappointing end up for us. It’s important when you can’t win a game that you make sure you don’t lose it,” he said.

“There’s a lot of optimism, the way the players have been of late and the results recently. I think you see we bounced into Fir Park today ready to take them on.

“It’s not going to affect what we do this season. I’m pretty sure this is a different looking Kilmarnock, it’s important we remember that. We take the belt and are ready to win a home game next week.

“Hopefully we can come through this first round of games with a lot of positivity.”

Brendan Rodgers is not surprised by Kilmarnock’s flying start to the season as he prepares to renew rivalries with the manager who posed him the biggest challenge during his first spell as Celtic manager.

Former Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes has had the chance to reshape his squad ahead of his second full season in charge at Rugby Park.

McInnes’ Aberdeen side finished as runners-up to Celtic in both of their title-winning campaigns under Rodgers during his first spell in charge, and in three of the five cup finals he won.

Rodgers was therefore not fazed as Killie started their cinch Premiership term with a win over Rangers and a draw at Hearts.

“It doesn’t surprise me,” he said. “Obviously he did a fantastic job at Aberdeen and when I was up here first time they were always very competitive, always very tough games.

“He got promoted with Kilmarnock and now he is looking to establish them in the top division, and after that first season he is putting his own stamp on it. He has been able to refresh the squad, get the profile of players that he wants in.

“I watched the game against Rangers and they did very well. Derek’s teams are always very well organised, some of the most competitive in the country, and he is a very experienced and excellent manager. So I anticipate a tough game for sure.

“They are very difficult to play against, that mixture of man-to-man and zonal and they defended deep.

“The surface always plays a part but we can’t have any excuse going into the game.

“We are in the competition to try and win it and if you are going to do that, you have to beat good teams and overcome difficult opponents.”

A 3-0 Hampden win over the Dons in the League Cup final in November 2016 marked Rodgers’ first major trophy of his managerial career and he hopes to follow that success to kick-start his second spell in Glasgow.

“I enjoyed that side of it when I was here last time, there is something to play for early on which is great,” he said.

“So having that opportunity to get to a final early on in the season is very good.

“We have to work hard to get there, you have to earn the right.”

Derek McInnes remains adamant that Kilmarnock were denied a penalty against Celtic in the ViaPlay Cup last season as he prepares to host the Hoops in the last-16 of the competition on Sunday.

The Parkhead side were leading by an early Daizen Maeda opener in the semi-final at Hampden Park in January as the match entered six added minutes added time.

A clumsy challenge by Celtic substitute Giorgos Giakoumakis on Killie defender Joe Wright inside the box was then ignored by referee Willie Collum.

Giakoumakis then tapped in a second to clinch a spot in the final for the Hoops with Killie boss McInnes saying afterwards: “Joe Wright was manhandled. There is no way Giakoumakis can get to the ball but he has come through him, two arms round him. It is a penalty kick.”

It was a self-aware McInnes who revisited the incident at his media conference at Rugby Park on Thursday.

He said: “Last season at Hampden we felt really aggrieved that we didn’t get the chance to take it to extra-time.

“Nothing will change my mind that we should have had a penalty kick in the last minute of the game.

“Celtic were firm favourites and it is not to say they wouldn’t have gone on to win it in extra-time but we did deserve the chance to go to extra-time.

“I believe the referee was told it was maybe worth having a look at and the referee thought he seen it for what it was, he thought it was a defender trying to buy a penalty.

“But maybe he should have been told to see the incident – here’s me, let it go Derek – he should have been made to go and see the incident and if he still arrives at the same conclusion then it is down to the referee’s perception but for me it was a penalty.

“We did a lot right in the game, we carried a threat, we played with two strikers, we tried to impose ourselves on the game and that was at Hampden.

“But you have to do so much right in the game against them to try to limit the opportunities and get the balance between defending and attacking.

“Obviously, it is now a cup tie here. We didn’t offer up anything in the two (league) games against Celtic here (5-0 and 4-1 defeats) and it is important to show, as we did against Rangers (1-0 win on opening day of league season), that there is a different side to us this season.

“We feel we are a team that can win a cup. We have to feel that and say that.

“Obviously the draw is tough, we are up against a team who have dominated cup competitions in the last wee while so it is important for us to see the opportunity that is there.

“If we can win this one it can set us up nicely for the rest of the competition.”

Steven Naismith blamed a European hangover and early teething trouble with new signings as Hearts stumbled to a goalless Premiership draw at home to Kilmarnock.

The Tynecastle side lacked the necessary spark in attack to break down a resolute Kilmarnock, who enjoyed the better opportunities over the course of the stalemate.

And Jambos technical director Naismith admits Thursday’s Europa Conference League third qualifying round encounter with Rosenborg in Norway appeared to have an effect on his players.

He said: “There was some frustration there but I’m realistic and I’ve got the experience of being in these situations.

“There’s been a few new players come in, it’s new to them, we have played away from home in Europe and come back.

“You’ll have seen it a million times that these are tough performances even before you look at the opposition.

“It was a slow start. Everyone was waiting for somebody to ignite the performance but as the game went on and the second-half developed, it looked very good for us.

“We were very composed and we made Kilmarnock defend.

“A big positive is we looked really secure at the back. That’s one of the big areas we needed to improve on, in set plays and general play and I thought we did look solid.”

The former Rangers and Scotland striker added: “(Thursday) is going to have an impact, without a doubt. I’ve been there as a player – it’s hard.

“As much as you prepare properly and do everything right, it’s an intense period. We’ve not had the luxury of having many competitive games and the adrenaline in the build up to games takes a bit out of you as well.

“And we’ve got new players who are still trying to bed in. So you’ve got to juggle all that but overall, there were loads of pleasing aspects to our performance.”

Hearts are back at home on Thursday night for the second leg of the meeting with Rosenborg as they seek to overturn their 2-1 first-leg deficit.

Asked if he was confident they could find a spark for that match, Naismith said: “If we don’t, then we have a problem.

“If players don’t want to play on a European night at Tynecastle, then that’s a problem. But I’m comfortable with that.”

Meanwhile, Kilmarnock manager Derek McInnes hailed his new-look side for taking their haul to four points after their opening-day shock win over Rangers.

The Rugby Park outfit carried the greater attacking threat and Kyle Magennis’ header and Stuart Findlay’s shot came closest to breaking the deadlock.

McInnes said: “We’re not celebrating coming here and getting a point and the clean sheet and the performance.

“But what I am privately celebrating is the type of team we’ve become in a short space of time.

“Coming through the League Cup stages and frantically trying to put a squad together that can meet the demands, we had so much to do.

“But the team over the last couple of games have shown so many real qualities.

“That wasn’t just a battling performance, that wasn’t us hanging in. Hearts came onto it for about 10 minutes towards the end, but I thought we were pretty assured and comfortable throughout.

“And I think we look as if we’ve been playing together a lot longer than what we have done – and that’s testament to the players.

“That’s two clean sheets against Rangers and Hearts.

“It’s not been perfect but it was a strong performance, as it needed to be and it was pretty comfortable for the vast majority of it.”

Hearts and Kilmarnock fought out a goalless stalemate at Tynecastle to remain undefeated after two Premiership matches of the new season.

Boos from the home side greeted the final whistle after a 90 minutes of few clear goalmouth opportunities.

After a late surge from the Jambos, Kilmarnock looked content with a point at the end, despite looking more threatening in attack for most of the match.

Both teams won their opening-day fixture in the Scottish top flight, with Kilmarnock delivering the surprise of the first round of fixtures with a shock 1-0 victory over Rangers.

Manager Derek McInnes named the same team for this trip to Tynecastle.

Hearts, who got off the mark with a 2-0 win away to St Johnstone, were in action again on Thursday when they slipped to a 2-1 first-leg defeat to Rosenborg in the Europa Conference League third qualifying round.

The home side made three changes, with Alex Cochrane still serving a domestic suspension, Alan Forrest dropping to the bench and Beni Baningime out of the squad completely.

Stephen Kingsley and Peter Haring were drafted in and recent signing Kyosuke Tagawa was handed his first start following his recent arrival from Japan. New signing Kenneth Vargas was also named amongst the substitutes before making his bow midway through the second period.

Hearts opened with intent and Haring had a header saved by William Dennis only to see the offside flag deny them a corner.

At the other end, Lewis Mayo enjoyed Kilmarnock’s first attempt on target in the 15th minute but his header was comfortably gathered by goalkeeper Zander Clark.

Moments later, the visitors had the opportunity to spring a counter-attack but skipper Brad Lyons could not find the supporting run of Matty Kennedy and the chance was gone.

There was a moment of concern for Hearts in the 26th minute when Clark punched the ball following a corner only for it to hit a ruck of players inside the box before the the home defence scrambled it clear.

The game needed a spark and Haring almost provided it for Hearts in the 33rd minute but his 25-yard drive slipped wide of the target.

But it was Kilmarnock who finished the half stronger. Kennedy’s shot was touched past by Clark and the winger saw a free-kick deflected wide.

Defender Robbie Deas then headed a David Watson cross off-target before the Rugby Park side carved out their best chance of the half.

A Kyle Magennis header from Kennedy’s in-swinging cross from the right was destined for the bottom corner of the net but Clark got a strong right hand to it to prevent the Ayrshire men from taking a lead into the break.

Hearts continued to enjoy more possession in the second half but it was Kilmarnock who fashioned the better moments in attack.

Kennedy drew another save from Clark within seconds of the restart before Daniel Armstrong headed wide.

The visiting supporters were off their seats in the 65th minute as a powerful drive from defender Stuart Findlay arrowed inches wide.

Despite their European exertions in Norway, Hearts finished the stronger of the two teams.

But, although they piled the pressure on in the closing minutes, they could not break down a resolute Kilmarnock defence.

A Lawrence Shankland effort – following a cross from substitute Liam Boyce – dropped wide and Vargas curled a long-range effort too high as both teams had to settle for a point.

James Tavernier admits Rangers’ opening day defeat to Kilmarnock at Rugby Park was “unacceptable” as he looks for a response in Europe in midweek.

The Light Blues were under some pressure after Celtic began the defence of their cinch Premiership title with a 4-2 win over Ross County on Saturday lunchtime but Michael Beale’s new-look side failed to get going.

Killie midfielder Brad Lyons scored the only goal of the game  after 65 minutes to put an early dent in the Gers title hopes as they quickly turn their attention to the first leg of their Champions League qualifier against Servette at Ibrox on Wednesday night.

The Light Blues skipper told RangersTV: “It was disappointing.

“Obviously to come away with zero points is unacceptable for us as a team, no matter what opposition it is, it is unacceptable for us as a team to come to a place like this and not create the chances that we wanted to and obviously to lose the game the way we did.

“But obviously it is the first game of the season. We didn’t want to start the season off like this but we have to learn from this and we’ve got a massive game on Wednesday.

“As players we have to pick ourselves up.

“We have to brush ourselves down and put in a performance that not only us as a team accept but put on a performance that the fans accept as well.”

Beale is also looking for early redemption following a damaging defeat. He said: “Really, really disappointing day, it couldn’t be any more disappointing.

“We expected a hell of a lot more, me, the players, the staff, and most importantly, the fans so we will apologise to them and we’ll come back strong in midweek.”

Killie boss Derek McInnes was delighted with the win but was wary of extrapolating too much from it in terms of the rest of the season.

He said: “The time to judge and reflect on the merits of the squad will be at the end of the season.

“We’ve tried to bring in a level of player as there was a lot of work needing done.

“A lot of good players and people have left the building and it was with a heavy heart that some moved on.

“But there was scope there to try to change the squad. We’ve brought 11 in and we’d still like to do one or two more.

“I’d like to bring in a bit more firepower but we had more senior ones coming back like Rory McKenzie and Kyle Vassell.

“Joe Wright should be part of that next week too so we’ve got decent strength there when everyone is fit and available.

“But I’d still like to carry a bit more of a punch at the top end of the pitch. If we can replicate what we served up on Saturday, I’ll be encouraged.”

Michael Beale spoke about a “bit of realism in the air” after new-look Rangers’ cinch Premiership title challenge got off to the worst possible start with a 1-0 defeat at Kilmarnock.

Brad Lyons’ strike after 65 minutes gave the home side a shock victory and put an early dent in the Light Blues hopes of wrestling the title back from Celtic, who began the defence of their title with a 4-2 win over Ross County earlier in the day.

It was the Light Blues’ first opening-day defeat in the top flight for 25 years.

The Gers boss has signed nine new players so far and he knows he has to get it right for the first leg of their Champions League qualifier against Servette at Ibrox on Wednesday night.

Beale said: “Not the start we wanted at all. We had good control of the game, we had the lion’s share of possession. Kilmarnock defended extremely well throughout, getting lots of people in and around their box.

“We had a couple of minutes towards the end of the first half that should’ve resulted in a goal. We had 18 attempts at goal, but I can’t remember the Kilmarnock goalkeeper being troubled enough.

“In a game like that when it’s stuffy, when we’re struggling to create clear-cut chances, you can’t concede a goal like we did. It’s a poor one.

“It’s bitterly disappointing for the players and staff but ultimately for the fans who have been excited in the summer, so there’s a bit of realism in the air with that result.

“There’s a lot of work to do moving forward but we’ll bounce back on Wednesday.”

Of Beale’s new boys, Jack Butland, Kieran Dowell, Sam Lammers, Abdallah Sima and Cyriel Dessers made their competitive debuts and Brazilian striker Danilo came on later, but the former QPR boss did not want to use that as excuse.

He said: “I don’t want to go down that road because it seems like a cop-out. I thought Kilmarnock played well and we looked stuffy at times.

“We’ve had five weeks together, they’re quality players, we had enough players on the pitch today who know what this is about.

“We had enough of the game in terms of possession and set-plays, we had more than Kilmarnock but we couldn’t find the answer and if you can’t find the answer you cannot concede a goal like the one we did.”

For Killie boss Derek McInnes, he was pleased to meet one of this season’s targets in the first game.

The former Rangers midfielder said: “It was one of the many things we wanted to improve on.

“We spoke with the team about targets and challenges and one of the first things we had to demonstrate was an ability, personality and confidence to beat Rangers and Celtic this season because we beat every other team in the league last season except them.

“You have to do so much right to beat them.

“I couldn’t single anybody out, it was a proper team performance, a squad performance to win the game.

“Rangers are littered with good players but our performances was good.

“So the fact that we have managed to beat Rangers is one of those boxes ticked and it is an encouraging start, but it is only a start.

“We go in to next week’s game (Hearts) with another thing to address our away form, we won two out of our last three away games last season, but we clearly need to improve our away form and next Sunday gives us an opportunity to address that.”

Kilmarnock have announced the signing of former Aberdeen forward Marley Watkins on a one-year contract.

The 32-year-old Wales international previously played under Killie manager Derek McInnes at Pittodrie.

The former Inverness, Barnsley, Norwich and Bristol City player netted six goals in 65 appearances for the Dons during two spells and left at the end of last season.

Stuart Findlay has returned to Kilmarnock on a season-long loan deal from Oxford United, pending Scottish Football Association approval.

The 27-year-old defender had two previous loan spells with the Rugby Park club in 2015/16 and 2017/18, before joining on a permanent deal the following season.

Findlay scored on his Scotland debut against San Marino at Hampden Park in October 2019, prior to signing with Philadelphia Union in the MLS before returning to the UK to sign for League One side Oxford last summer.

A statement on Kilmarnock’s website confirned Findlay’s return, adding: “Everyone at Kilmarnock FC would like to wish Stuart a warm welcome back home.”

Kilmarnock have completed a triple signing by bringing Matty Kennedy back to Rugby Park.

The Ayrshire club earlier signed Kyle Magennis from Hibernian and brought in Bournemouth goalkeeper Will Dennis on a season-long loan.

Kennedy began his career with Killie before making a move to Everton as a teenager in 2012.

The 28-year-old joins from Aberdeen on a three-year deal and is reunited with former Dons boss Derek McInnes.

He told the club’s website: “This is my team. I love the club and it’s somewhere that always felt like home, so I’m delighted to be back here. I always wanted to come back at some point.”

Magennis joined on a two-year deal after being allowed to leave Hibernian. The 24-year-old midfielder made 49 appearances during a near three-year spell at Easter Road which was badly affected by injuries.

“The gaffer has always been interested in me and he’s someone I wanted to work with, so over the past few weeks the move has fallen into place,” Magennis told his new club’s website.

“It’s a fresh start for me. I’ve had a tough few seasons with injuries, but I’m feeling good and ready to go. I know that if I’m playing, I’ll be a big asset to the club.”

Dennis is a 22-year-old who has made one first-team appearance for the Cherries, in a 4-1 FA Cup win over Oldham in 2021, and has had loan spells at Guernsey, Weymouth, Wealdstone and Slough Town.

Brad Lyons has signed a new two-year deal at Kilmarnock after helping the club escape relegation.

The Northern Ireland midfielder made 15 cinch Premiership appearances last season and scored in the decisive 3-1 win over Ross County on the final day, after coming into the team for the equally important 3-0 win at Dundee United days earlier.

The 26-year-old former Coleraine, Blackburn, St Mirren and Morecambe player told Killie’s website: “I love the club and community, so it was easy for me to re-sign.

“Towards the end of the season I think that I showed my true self, so I’m really glad the club offered me a new deal. The manager’s message to me is to try and be more consistent with playing levels.

“I’ve now shown what I’m worth, so that’s the level I need to hit every week.”

Kilmarnock have made their first summer signing by bringing in centre-back Robbie Deas from Inverness.

The 23-year-old revealed on Saturday that the Scottish Cup final had been his final game for Caley Thistle and Deas has now signed a two-year contract with Killie.

The left-sided defender joined Inverness from Celtic in the summer of 2020 and made 113 appearances, bouncing back from a broken leg earlier in the season to help the club reach the cup final.

The former Scotland Under-21 international told Killie’s website: “I fully understand the size of this club and the demands that will be placed on me as a player, so I’m excited about taking this step in my career.

“It was inspiring to speak with the manager about his ambitions for the club and it became clear that Kilmarnock would be a perfect fit for me.

“I’m determined to kick on and do my best for the manager and supporters over the next two years.”

Killie announced on Saturday that Fraser Murray had agreed a two-year contract and Innes Cameron had signed a one-year deal after returning to fitness before the end of the campaign.

Alan Power, Blair Alston, Chris Stokes, Scott Robinson, Calum Waters, Lee Hodson and Dylan McGowan are all departing at the end of their deals while loan players Jordan Jones, Lewis Mayo, Luke Chambers, Zach Hemming, Ben Chrisene, Christian Doidge, Ryan Alebiosu and Jeriel Dorsett have all left.

The club remain in discussions with Ash Taylor, Liam Polworth, Brad Lyons, Jack Sanders, Sam Walker and Liam Donnelly.

Manager Derek McInnes said: “While discussions are ongoing with a number of players, I would like to take the opportunity to thank departing members of the squad for their effort and commitment.”

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