Motherwell failed to score against Dundee United and lost 1-0 to a first half deflection. They last won away from home six months ago.
There was little between the teams and neither side dominated. Without the suspended Kevin Van Veen there was no focus for the visiting attack and the home ‘keeper had no save to make until the closing minutes. The path to Europe is still open but now fading into the far distance.
There were two changes to the Motherwell line up. Kaiyne Woolery and Mark O’Hara got the call as Joe Efford and Dean Cornelius missed out. Sean Goss got the game underway.
Motherwell were to pay heavily for failing to take a couple of great opportunities in the first half. In 8 minutes the ‘Well defence coped with a United set piece and set up Ross Tierney with a break. The midfielder, playing at the centre of the three forwards, found himself with space on the left side of the box. He curled the ball around Siegrist only to see it rebound off the far post.
Ten minutes later there was more ‘Well pressure. Callum Slattery was felled just outside the penalty area but the referee allowed an advantage. The ball fell to Woolery and his strike rattled the crossbar.
Play was mostly in the Motherwell half and Liam Kelly was not threatened until the 37th minute. United were in possession 20 yards out with the area crowded. A Levitt shot took a spinning upward deflection and Kelly could only watch as it flew over him into the net.
Tierney had a fine chance two minutes after the break. On the right of the penalty area with Siegrist stranded there was the option of a scoring lob but he sent the ball into the guardian’s arms.
As the game reached the finale Bevis Mugabi moved upfield and United were force back. Lamie headed a Slattery free kick just wide, Tierney headed off target and substitute Joe Efford had a shot pushed for a corner but no levelling goal came.
Next week’s trip to Dingwall is shaping up to be a European qualifier.
Dundee United 1 Motherwell 0
Team: Kelly, Carroll, Ojala (Efford 65), Mugabi, Lamie, O’Hara, Goss, Slattery, Woolery (Donnelly 75), Shields, Tierney
Saturday 30 April 2022