Partick 3 Motherwell 0

Last updated : 26 April 2003 By Footymad Previewer

After running Rangers close in a thrilling cup semi-final, Motherwell came back to earth with a bang this week with a 3-0 mauling at Partick.

A sixth successive league defeat leaves them stranded at the bottom of the table and praying hard that Falkirk's groundsharing plans will be out-voted to save them from relegation.

Partick, meanwhile, have virtually secured their place in the SPL for another season after bringing a six match winless streak of their own to an end.

To rub salt into Motherwell's wounds much of the damage was done by a former Fir Park player Alex Burns, who grabbed the opening goal and set up the second for Gerry Britton who later made it 3-0.

Having scored regularly against his old team this season Burns wasted little time in testing Motherwell goalkeeper Francois Dubourdeau from the edge of the box.

Partick's top scorer then had another go at beating the Frenchman with a 26th minute free-kick.

Two minutes later James McFadden lined up a free-kick 25 yards out, but his firmly struck shot was always drifting over.

Burns put Partick ahead within 60 seconds of McFadden's miss and Thistle looked comfortable for the rest of the first half.

A freshening breeze at the start of the second period looked set to make Motherwell's job even more difficult but they really should have equalised afer 52 minutes when a ricochet found David Clarkson who flicked the ball wide with the outside of his left foot.

Partick deservedly made the game safe in the 68th minute when Burns kept the ball in play near the by-line and almost deceived Dubourdeau with an angled drive, before Britton finally hit the far corner of the net at the third attempt.

In the dying moments Britton stayed just onside and left the goalkeeper helpless with a vicious left footed volley.