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Partick 1-5 Motherwell: Match Report

29 Dec 2013 18:31:00

Partick 1-5 Motherwell: Match Report

Partick 1-5 Motherwell: Match Report - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game as it happened.


Easy for Well

James McFadden scored his first Scottish Premiership goal of the season as Motherwell consolidated second place with an emphatic fourth consecutive victory.


Former Motherwell winger Steven Lawless opened the scoring but any hope Thistle had of claiming their first Premiership win at Firhill was extinguished before an end-to-end first half finished.


Keith Lasley quickly equalised before Zaine Francis-Angol scored an excellent solo goal and McFadden lobbed home before the break. Lionel Ainsworth and substitute John Sutton added to the scoring to secure a 5-1 victory for Stuart McCall's side.


The recalled McFadden also hit the bar as Motherwell again showed they have put their William Hill Scottish Cup defeat by Albion firmly behind them.


With Shaun Hutchinson suspended and Fraser Kerr missing with a tight hamstring, McCall had to reshuffle his back four with Stuart Carswell at right-back.


And the makeshift defence was cut open in the eighth minute as Thistle worked their way forward after Gabriel Piccolo had cut out Simon Ramsden's ball forward.


Kris Doolan played in James Craigen in the left channel and he cut the ball back for Lawless to steer into the bottom corner.


Both sets of fans joined in applause for Phil O'Donnell, who died exactly six years ago while playing for Motherwell against Dundee United.


Thistle kept up the pressure and Lawless almost doubled his tally with a 25-yard strike that Dan Twardzik pushed wide before Piccolo headed not far away from the corner.


But Motherwell were level in the 15th minute. McFadden took the ball in from a throw-in, turned his man and slipped the ball into the path of Lasley, who placed the ball inside the far corner.


The goalmouth action was relentless. Lawless played in Kallum Higginbotham but Twardzik raced off his line to block, and seconds later a Francis-Angol cross fell for Iain Vigurs but the midfielder could not head on target.


Francis-Angol soon caused even more damage in the 21st minute after some sharp build-up play down the left with Steven Hammell at its heart. The former Tottenham trainee cut inside Stephen O'Donnell and squeezed a right-footed shot inside the near post.


Thistle made a change in the 27th minute when another former Motherwell player, Ross Forbes, came on for Christie Elliott with Higginbotham moving to the right.


Doolan came close with a curler but Motherwell extended their lead in the 36th minute.


There appeared little danger but Henri Anier pounced on a loose ball midway inside the Thistle half and lofted a pass forward for McFadden. The Scotland hero beat Piccolo for strength and skill and lobbed the ball over Scott Fox and into the corner of the net.


McFadden and Forbes had spectacular volleys tipped over at either end as the second half started in similarly action-packed fashion.


Thistle pressed but Motherwell moved further ahead in the 56th minute. Aaron Taylor-Sinclair appeared to have thwarted a Motherwell attack but he gifted possession to Lasley, who played in Ainsworth to slot the ball into the corner for his third goal in three games.


McFadden powered a header against the bar following a Vigurs cross just before Sutton netted in the 65th minute when he ran on to a long ball from Vigurs and steered the ball home.


McFadden played Ainsworth through two minutes later but Fox came off his line to block the shot and the former Everton player curled just wide from 25 yards as Motherwell threatened to embarrass the Jags.


Thistle came closer to a seventh goal though but Twardzik slid to clear to deny Doolan a consolation after Hammell's short backpass.



PA

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