Motherwell and Hibs Settle for a Point Each

Last updated : 15 February 2005 By Firparkcorner

Motherwell made by far the better start and were the only team to threaten for the majority of the first half. Hibs played the prettier football but lacked a cutting edge and O’Connor in particular was getting frustrated at things not going his way. McDonald was in good positions throughout the game but couldn’t convert these into chances. He miss-controlled a good ball from Hamilton when he could have been through and also blazed over from eight yards.

In between these chances, we had a header cleared off the line, another head cleared with a striker lurking and another header into the top corner. The successful attempt came from Stevie Craigan who met Hammell’s corner with no one near him and steered his effort home.

This woke the visitors up. They were backed by a large, if quiet, support. O’Connor came close when a clearance rebounded off him and just wide whilst another effort was squandered on the stroke of half time, the attacker unable to get a scoring touch onto a great header across goal.

Hibs came out in the second half looking the much hungrier side and quickly pressed us back. Marshall made a blinding save from a one on one but we had chances as well. McDonald sprinted through when he might have passed but his shot was blocked and an excellent header from Hamilton was scrambled round the post by Brown.

The equaliser then came but Terry Butcher will be raging at the manner in which it was conceded. You should never be hit on the break whilst winning and Hibs hit us with a classic counter attack. McBride, another who had a poor game, foolishly took on two Hibs players and lost the ball when we had committed men forward. Hibs broke to the other end and Marshall eventually hauled down the striker when he was clean in on goal. The attacker was going away from goal so Marsh escaped a red card but could do nothing about the penalty with Riordan sending him the wrong way.

From then on both teams attacked on the break as the game became stretched. At least we had learned our lesson about letting players walk away from us in the midfield as a couple of thumping and cynical tackles denied Hibs when opportunities were there. A delightful chip from Hamilton almost stole the points but it was only when Richie Foran was introduced we began to look lively again.

Quite why he was left out when McBride produced absolutely nothing of note on the right is a mystery. Scott McDonald needs to remember he has ten team mates out there and as for Stepover, sorry Jim you’ve had a run to get your fitness back and it’s just not happening. Strange team selections can be justified by good results but at least two or three changes will be needed for Saturday.