Motherwell suffered another disappointing defeat after Aberdeen won 2-1 at Fir Park. Not for the first time this season we failed to capitalise when we were on top and some woeful defending allowed Aberdeen to score twice although they could easily have found the net on further occasions.

Faddy scores the penalty
We made the better start to the match and were soon pressing Aberdeen back. James McFadden was looking to impress Berti Vogts and he had a couple of excellent runs. He looked set to give us the lead when clean through but a defender appeared to clip his foot just as he was about to strike. We almost opened the scoring when a corner was missed by everyone and hit the post. A frantic scramble saw the Dons just clear the ball.

However, we were given a warning that our defence was not up to scratch. Several errors, a couple of which were identical to last week, allowed an Aberdeen attacker to head wide from six yards when it looked easier to score.

That was the visitors only chance of an opening period they spent camped in their own half. For all our possession, we struggled to create chances but when Lasley was hauled down in the box after an excellent move we had an opportunity from the penalty spot. McFadden took the responsibility and sent the ‘keeper the wrong way to give us the lead at the interval.

Heads up in the box
It was clear that Ebbe Skovdahl would not have been pleased with the display turned in by his side and would have given them a going over in the dressing room. Unfortunately we seemed to fall asleep immediately after the restart and Aberdeen equalised immediately with a laughably bad goal. Leitch lost the ball needlessly in midfield and Aberdeen broke away. Darren Young’s weak shot was deflected by Ramsay but it still looked like an easy save. Woods couldn’t collect the ball cleanly and it rebounded off his chest. The onrushing striker contrived to miss what looked like a tap in but the ball broke to Young who slammed it in with Woods ambling back towards his line.

The equaliser was the equivalent of us jumping on the self-destruct button. For the next twenty minutes Aberdeen ran riot through the middle of the park and our defending was little short of abysmal. Aberdeen were unable to take advantage of our poor play and failed to put us to the sword. We rearranged things when Sengewald replaced Leitch and this managed to halt Aberdeen’s dominance.

The turning point came when Lehmann failed to convert a glorious chance with ten minutes to go. He was at full stretch though and it wasn’t his fault he couldn’t control his shot but had he capped off the good move with a goal, we would probably have won. Instead, Aberdeen flew through the midfield moments later, were given acres of space to cross and Deloumeaux out-muscled the defender to prod into the corner of the net.

We tried to force ourselves back into the match but our best chance was easily saved when Russell could only poke the ball into the ‘keepers arms. Aberdeen almost sealed the win when a great effort rebounded off the underside of the bar.

So, another disappointing loss and with a trip to Ibrox looming, Terry Butcher will have his work cut out in the coming weeks. It’s one thing being in charge when things are going well, will El Tel be up to the challenge when we’re struggling?