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Daniel Grainger takes a inswinging corner from the right by-line to the near post, Stephen Craigan manages to make a clearance.
Peter MacDonald has an effort at goal. Darren Randolph makes a brilliant save.
John Sutton challenges Steven Anderson unfairly and gives away a free kick. Peter Enckelman takes the indirect free kick.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Stephen Craigan on Peter MacDonald. Indirect free kick taken by Daniel Grainger.
John Sutton gets on the score sheet with a goal from the edge of the penalty box to the top left corner of the goal. Motherwell 4-0 St Johnstone.
Esteban Casagolda challenges Michael Duberry unfairly and gives away a free kick. Peter Enckelman restarts play with the free kick.
Jonathan Page comes on in place of Stevie Hammell. Outswinging corner taken by Jamie Murphy from the right by-line played to the near post, clearance made by Kevin Rutkiewicz.
Shot by Alan Gow from 20 yards. Liam Craig gets a block in.
Alan Gow gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Jody Morris. Liam Craig restarts play with the free kick.
Collin Samuel takes a shot. Save made by Darren Randolph.
David MacKay goes off and Kevin Rutkiewicz comes on.
Chris Humphrey goes off and Alan Gow comes on.
Tom Hateley takes a shot. Peter Enckelman makes a save.
Esteban Casagolda replaces Nick Blackman.
Peter Enckelman challenges Chris Humphrey unfairly and gives away a free kick. Booking for Peter Enckelman. Free kick taken by Nick Blackman.
Collin Samuel is brought on as a substitute for Sam Parkin.
Jody Morris fouled by Marc Fitzpatrick, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Peter Enckelman.
Jody Morris challenges John Sutton unfairly and gives away a . Peter MacDonald is brought on as a substitute for Scott Dobie.
Jody Morris concedes a free kick for a foul on John Sutton. Peter MacDonald replaces Scott Dobie. Stevie Hammell restarts play with the free kick.
Liam Craig fouled by Steve Jennings, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Jody Morris.
John Sutton gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Michael Duberry. Michael Duberry takes the indirect free kick.
Liam Craig has an effort at goal from deep inside the area missing to the right of the target.
The assistant referee flags for offside against John Sutton. Michael Duberry takes the free kick.
Foul by Alan Maybury on Marc Fitzpatrick, free kick awarded. Free kick taken by Stephen Craigan.
Scott Dobie takes a shot. Save made by Darren Randolph.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Steve Jennings on Sam Parkin. Liam Craig restarts play with the free kick.
Nick Blackman gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Steven Anderson. Indirect free kick taken by Daniel Grainger.
Shot from deep inside the area by Chris Humphrey goes over the bar.
Unfair challenge on Steve Jennings by Jody Morris results in a free kick. Free kick taken by Stevie Hammell.
David MacKay challenges Jamie Murphy unfairly and gives away a free kick. The ball is delivered by Stevie Hammell, Nick Blackman gets on the score sheet with a goal from inside the six-yard box to the top right corner of the goal. Motherwell 3-0 St Johnstone.
Scott Dobie gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Tom Hateley. Stephen Craigan restarts play with the free kick.
Cleveland Taylor gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Marc Fitzpatrick. Stevie Hammell takes the indirect free kick.
Jamie Murphy has an effort at goal from 20 yards. Comfortable save by Peter Enckelman.
Alan Maybury concedes a free kick for a foul on John Sutton. Free kick taken by Stevie Hammell.
Corner taken left-footed by Daniel Grainger from the left by-line to the near post, clearance by Tom Hateley.
Corner taken right-footed by Cleveland Taylor, Stephen Craigan manages to make a clearance.
Corner taken by Cleveland Taylor from the right by-line, Michael Duberry gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on John Sutton. Indirect free kick taken by Darren Randolph.
Cleveland Taylor takes the outswinging corner, Jamie Murphy makes a clearance.
Nick Blackman is adjudged to have handled the ball. Peter Enckelman takes the free kick.
Sam Parkin is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Darren Randolph takes the free kick.
Unfair challenge on Liam Craig by Marc Fitzpatrick results in a free kick. Free kick taken by Peter Enckelman.
Unfair challenge on John Sutton by Michael Duberry results in a free kick. Indirect free kick taken by Darren Randolph.
Corner taken by Chris Humphrey.
Corner taken right-footed by Cleveland Taylor, Stevie Hammell makes a clearance.
Nick Blackman fires in a goal from inside the penalty area to the bottom right corner of the goal. Motherwell 2-0 St Johnstone.Assist by Chris Humphrey.
Steve Jennings has shot on goal from just outside the area which goes wide of the right-hand upright.
Unfair challenge on Chris Humphrey by Daniel Grainger results in a free kick. Free kick crossed right-footed by Tom Hateley.
Mark Reynolds takes a shot. Save by Peter Enckelman.
Corner taken short by Jody Morris.
John Sutton is ruled offside. Free kick taken by Peter Enckelman.
Shot by Cleveland Taylor. Save made by Darren Randolph.
A goal is scored by Nick Blackman from close range low into the middle of the goal. Motherwell 1-0 St Johnstone.Assist by Jamie Murphy.
Mark Reynolds gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Jody Morris. Strike on goal comes in from Daniel Grainger from the free kick.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Steve Jennings on Liam Craig. Peter Enckelman takes the free kick.
Cleveland Taylor gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on John Sutton. Indirect free kick taken by Stevie Hammell.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Stephen Craigan on Scott Dobie. Free kick crossed right-footed by Cleveland Taylor from left wing, Steve Jennings makes a clearance.
The match begins.
The half-time whistle blows.
The second half begins.
The referee brings the game to a close.
Lasley set to miss out
Motherwell midfielder Keith Lasley may again miss out for the Clydesdale Bank Premier League visit of St Johnstone.
Lasley is close to a return from a hamstring injury but may have to wait until Saturday's game against Hibernian.
Motherwell otherwise have a full squad with Esteban Casagolda pushing for a comeback after knee surgery.
Motherwell manager Craig Brown will ask his young team for one final push this week before their hectic schedule calms down.
Motherwell play their ninth midweek game of the season when they host Saints.
The Lanarkshire club's run to the Europa League play-offs and continuing involvement in the Co-operative Insurance Cup means the visit of Saints is their 20th competitive game of the campaign.
Motherwell have played more matches than cup semi-final opponents Rangers, a feat achieved with the use of 18 players, significantly less than the SPL leaders.
Brown said: "This is their last midweek fixture for the time being so we want to complete the series successfully and then we go week to week.
"We're lucky we have only had two major injuries, Keith Lasley and Jamie Murphy. We have survived an intensive 20-game period with the minimum of injuries and no suspensions. If we get an injury now, we have a week to recover. That is one heartening feature."
Danny Grainger returns from suspension for St Johnstone.
Midfielder Murray Davidson is out with an ankle injury aggravated in Saturday's defeat by Kilmarnock.
Loan striker Marcus Haber will return to West Brom for rehabilitation after snapping his anterior cruciate ligament against Killie.
Saints boss Derek McInnes insists his side will face the best team outside of the Old Firm when they take on Motherwell.
McInnes` men are reeling after two successive 3-0 home defeats in the Clydesdale Bank Premier League to Celtic and Kilmarnock.
Craig Brown's side, conversely, beat Inverness 2-1 on Saturday to keep themselves in third place behind leaders Rangers and chasing Celtic - a place where McInnes believes the Steelmen deserve to be at this point in the season.
"We are playing a team I believe are the best outside the Old Firm," the former Rangers and Dundee United midfielder told Press Association Sport.
"Craig has had a consistency of selection and you can more or less name their team.
"That consistency of selection helps and they had that last season when they went on that long unbeaten run.
"They have good players and good experience and have firepower that not many squads in the league can match.
"Any four of their five front men they usually play carry a goal threat.
"We won there last season but we expect a tough match because as I say, they are the best team in Scotland outside the Old Firm."
Blackman treble sinks Saints
Nick Blackman struck a first-half hat-trick to consolidate Motherwell's place in the top three of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League in a 4-0 win over St Johnstone.
The on-loan Blackburn striker finished off two clinical attacks down Motherwell's right wing before converting from close range following Stevie Hammell's injury-time free-kick.
Blackman had not previously scored at Fir Park but his treble, on the eve of his 22nd birthday, took his tally to eight SPL goals in 10 starts and John Sutton completed the rout with three minutes left.
St Johnstone have now conceded 13 goals in four consecutive defeats and, although they had their fair share of first-half possession, they had no answer to Motherwell's pace in attack.
Manager Derek McInnes had made five changes following the 3-0 defeat to Kilmarnock with Scott Dobie handed a first SPL start and Peter Enckelman, Cleveland Taylor, Steven Anderson and Danny Grainger all returning.
Grainger threatened first when he curled a 25-yard free-kick just wide of the far post but Motherwell, who handed Marc Fitzpatrick a rare start, took the lead in the 12th minute.
Tom Hateley played the ball over Grainger's head for Jamie Murphy to run onto and he drove the ball from the byline into the path of Blackman to tap home from two yards.
Saints tried to fight back and Darren Randolph saved Taylor's deflected effort before the Motherwell goalkeeper held from his own defender after Mark Reynolds diverted Jody Morris's cross goalwards.
But the visitors were leaving far too much space in behind and Motherwell punished them down the right wing again in the 24th minute.
Chris Humphrey played the ball past Grainger and ran clear before calmly cutting the ball back for Blackman to slot into the bottom corner from 10 yards.
St Johnstone did not let their heads go down and pressed Motherwell back for long spells without being able to carve out a clear chance.
Michael Duberry was proving a threat as the visitors forced several corners but could not trouble Randolph.
And Blackman completed his treble in first-half injury-time when he forced the ball home from close range at the second attempt after Stephen Craigan had helped on Hammell's free-kick from near the corner flag.
Blackman remained hungry for more after the break, gently chastising Humphrey after the winger shot just over from a tight angle following an exciting run.
Dobie headed straight at Randolph following Duberry's flick-on and Liam Craig flashed a shot just wide from long range, but St Johnstone were otherwise lacking invention and Peter MacDonald and Collin Samuel came on for Dobie and Sam Parkin in a bid to turn the tide.
Motherwell's grip on the game strengthened though. The impressive Humphrey was again played clear down the right when John Sutton's pass cut the visitors open, but he was felled by a rash challenge by Enckelman outside his box.
The home fans shouted for a red card but referee Crawford Allan was right to show a yellow as Humphrey had played the ball too far to have a sight of goal.
Blackman was given a rest for the final 20 minutes with Saturday's trip to Easter Road in mind. Esteban Casagolda came on and almost set up a fourth with a brilliant low cross that Duberry diverted into the arms of Enckelman.
Randolph saved well from Samuel's close-range header and Motherwell compounded the visitors' misery when Sutton's shot deflected past Enckelman following a penetrating run from substitute Alan Gow.
"Who will win the PL title this season - 2013/14?"
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