'Well fail to turn up in Perth

Last updated : 27 October 2013 By Firparkcorner

There were two changes from the team that beat Hearts last weekend.  Lawson was preferred to Francis-Angol while Anier moved to the bench to give a starting place to McHugh.  Motherwell, kitted out in the all black strip, kicked off with their back to the ‘Well support.  Apart from a bright opening ten minutes we were second best.


Carswell, on the left of the midfield diamond, was floored as the ball smashed into his face after thirty seconds but he was soon back in the mix.  Although most of the opening play was in the St Johnstone half the first chance fell to Cregg when he got on the end of a Hasselbaink cut back at the edge of the box but his effort was off target.

Ramsden delivered a good cross toward Sutton and the striker managed a low header just wide of Mannus’ left hand post but the initiative had swung to the home side and we struggled to hold on to the ball.   We survived several scrambles deep inside our own box and had to defend lots of corners.  The lack of width concentrated most of our play through the centre of the pitch but we struggled to string any passes together.  The break came as a relief.

We started the second half with the wind at our backs but the flow of the game was unchanged.  We conceded three minutes after the restart.  Neilsen produced a spectacular save to prevent McDonald’s shiot but May pounced first on the loose ball and smashed it into the net from close range.

Worse was to follow as we gifted the Saints a second.  Under no pressure Neilsen attempted to collect the ball on the dead ball line five yards from his goal but he slipped, fell, and kept the ball in play for a grateful Hasselbaink who calmy launched it into the empty net.  Within minutes Carswell and Vigurs were hooked as Francis-Angol and Moore were thrown on to help the salvage operation.

Moore and Lawson had shots to give some hope but our defence was having a nightmare at the other end. By the hour we were lucky to be only two behind.  The 317 Motherwell fans in the 2449 crowd had little to cheer.