There were two changes to our line up. O’Donnell replaced Andy Smith and
Foran converts from the spot
We almost went ahead inside the first minute when Malkowski saved well from a Clarkson strike. The pressure stayed on the South Stand goal for the next fifteen minutes or so as Motherwell sent in wave after wave of attacks. No reward was forthcoming and Hibs began to push forward.
Hammell was given early notice of the pace of Sproule and he was eventually booked for his illegal challenges on the speedy winger.
Graeme Smith pulled off a wonderful finger tip touch over the top at full stretch to deny a goal bound twenty five yard effort from Stewart but the defence slept at the resulting corner. Riordan swung the ball to the back post and the unmarked Beuzelin headed home.
Meanwhile, the referee was well into his booking spree. In all he managed to show almost half the team yellow cards (some deserved) but his inconsistency angered the crowd and the management team.
The first half had been an end to end affair with both teams having no regard to defence. Unfortunately we made little of out chances and seemed to miss the presence of
Smith kept us in the game during the first ten minutes of the second forty five minutes with a couple of first class stops. The first, from the feet of Sproule and the second, a stretched arm to deny Riordan as he rolled the ball to the far corner. But another lapse in concentration cost the second. This time it was McLean who seemed slow to react and Stewart was able to bundle the ball over the line from close in.
We stuck to the task and there can be no criticism of the effort given by the players as they tried to get us back into the game. But despite much of the play being in the last attacking third we rarely threatened the Hibs net.
Andy Smith replaced Fagan but we lost a third within minutes. Riordan found the inside of the post and the game was over.
We had a late flurry and when O’Donnell was tumbled on the edge of the box we had a penalty. Foran finished well. Steve McDonald was thrown on in the last few minutes to impose his height on the situation and his first touch resulted in us winning a free kick but the defensive wall stood firm and the chance was gone.
We can have little complaint at the result and, as we lick the wounds and count the bookings, we can only hope that our recent goal scoring form returns for next week.