Phil McGhee at New Douglas Park
Motherwell suffered a derby day drubbing as the Fir Park side made the worst possible start to the New Year.
And after two wins from his first games in charge, Ian Baraclough was left in no doubt about the challenge he faces as his men were played off the park by an energetic and determined Accies.
Having already lost 4-0 at Fir Park, Motherwell fans probably thought it couldn’t get any worse against their old rivals.
But after Hamilton took an eigth minute lead it was a long and miserable afternoon for everyone in claret and amber as the Douglas Park side recorded their biggest win over ‘Well in 80 years.
After being substituted in the last two games, Mark O’Brien’s injuries caught up with him and his starting place in the middle of the defence went to Fraser Kerr.
And facing drving rain and an attacking Accies side the ‘Well rearguard was immediately under pressure.
From two corners in the opeing four minutes Alex Neil’s header was blocked in front of goal before Mickey Devlin’s powerful header was cleared off the line by Josh Law.
With the Fir Park men hemmed in their own half, Baraclough was forced into a seventh minute change when Simon Ramsden limped off with Lee Erwin coming on to join John Sutton up front.
Before the change had time to settle, ‘Well found themsleves a goal behind. Dougie Imrie raced beyond Craig Reid and his low drive sneaked inside Dan Twardzik’s right hand post despite the ‘keeper’s best effort to keep it out.
Motherwell looked to have weathered the early storm and finally forced their way into the Accies box. Henrik Ojamaa did well to cut the ball back to Erwin but his shot on goal was blocked by Grant Gillespie.
Accies pace, coupled with ‘Well’s inability to retain possession, regularly left the visitor’s defence exposed.
In the 26th minute Twardzik was at full stretch to palm away a snapshot from Tony Andreu. The ‘Well ‘keeper was again exposed two minutes later when he got down well to block another Andreu effort but Ali Crawford reacted first to hammer the ball over the grounded Twardzik and put Accies 2-0 up.
The visitors were forced into another change at half-time with Chris Cadden replacing Stevie Hammell and Law dropping to full back.
Within a minute it could have been 3-0 when Mickael Antoine Curier’s shot rebounded from the foot of the post.
Motherwell did look more threatening in attack and after 54 minutes Martin Canning stretched in front of Erwin to cut out Lionel Ainsworth’s ball across goal.
Erwin then had a great chance to pull one back but with Michael McGovern racing to the edge of his box the young ‘Well striker weakly lifted the ball into the ‘keeper’s hands.
Any faint thoughts of a fightback were erased after 65 minutes when Antoine Curier rode his luck and a few challenges inside the 6 yard box to walk the ball into the net to make it 3-0.
Ainsworth came within a couple of inches of pulling one back but with the ‘keeper advancing from his line the winger’s touch carried the ball on the wrong side of the post.
Accies were more ruthless in front of goal, although poor ‘Well defending allowed Imrie to tee up the unmarked Andreu who swept the ball home to make it 4-0
There were still chances for ‘Well and after replacing Ainsworth, Dom Thomas set up Ojamaa but in keeping with the ‘Well performance his effort was way off target.
Very few of the impressive travelling support of over 1500 were still in the stadium to see Danny Redmond adding a fifth goal to complete the scoring and a miserable afternoon for ‘Well.
[tab:As it happened]
Ally Reilly at New Douglas Park
FT: Hamilton Accies 5 – 0 Motherwell #HAFCvMFC
2 minutes added on #HAFCvMFC
88mins: Goal – It’s 5-0 to Accies, Redmond capitilsing on yet more terrible defending #HAFCvMFC
83mins: Final Accies change of the afternoon, Andreu off for Redmond #HAFCvMFC
78mins: Good break forward from Thomas and he finds Ojamaa inside the box but his shot is best forgotten. Well wide. #HAFCvMFC
76mins: Accies sub, Brophy on for Antoine Curier #HAFCvMFC
75mins: Motherwell sub, Thomas on for Ainsworth #HAFCvMFC
69mins: Goal – Andreu makes it 4-0 from a Crawford cut back #HAFCvMFC
65mins: A chance for Ainswwrth to pull one back after he reads a slack backpass but pokes it inches wide of the post #HAFCvMFC
64mins: Goal – Antoine Curier gets all the time he needs and skips past Twardzik to make it 3-0 #HAFCvMFC
62mins: Another free-kick in a good area, this time Canning heads out for a corner #HAFCvMFC
60mins: Free-kick to Motherwell, wide on the right…but once again there is no threat to the Accies goal #HAFCvMFC
54mins: Accies sub, Routledge is on for Neil #HAFCvMFC
53mins: Decent bit of play down the right to get a cross in for Ewrin but Canning gets there first and clears for a corner #HAFCvMFC
46mins: Antoine Curier strikes the post. Cut open way too easily yet again #HAFCvMFC
Accies get the second half underway #HAFCvMFC
Half time sub, Cadden is on for Hammell. #HAFCvMFC
HT: Hamilton Accies 2 – 0 Motherwell #HAFCvMFC
41mins: Free-kick to Motherwell in a decent position. Ainsworth swings it in but Devlin is on hand to clear #HAFCvMFC
29mins: Goal – It’s 2-0 to Accies as Imrie cut it back to Andreu whose shot was parried into the path of Crawford who tapped home. #HAFCvMFC
26mins: Twardzik is forced into a fine diving save to deny Andreu who shot from 25 yards #HAFCvMFC
25mins: Accies work the forward and Andreu sets up Antione Curier just inside the box but he lacks composure and fires well over #HAFCvMFC
21mins: Good burst forward from Ojamaa wins another corner but again it’s too easy for Accies as McGovern gathers #HAFCvMFC
17mins: Quick turn in the box and shot from Erwin earns ‘Well a corner…from the delivery, Hamilton deal with it easily. #HAFCvMFC
10mins: Fair to say it has been a poor opening 10 from the Steelmen. Can’t seem to get any decent spell of possession #HAFCvMFC
8mins: Goal – Imrie breaks clear of the Motherwell defence and powers his shot past the helpless Twardzik. 1-0 Accies #HAFCvMFC
7mins: An early Motherwell sub, Ramsden is off for Erwin. #HAFCvMFC
3mins: Canning heads the delivery goalwards and it is hooked off the line, Not sure who by but desperate defending here #HAFCvMFC
3mins: An early corner for Accies…Neil has a free header and somehow it is scrambled away for another corner. #HAFCvMFC
Lasley and Law get the game underway. COYW! #HAFCvMFC
Out come the teams… #HAFCvMFC
Motherwell manager Ian Baraclough:
“It’s not nice being involved in that kind of result. We can’t go around feeling sorry for ourselves.
“It’s one way you see the character of a player when the chips go down.
“They outworked us. They didn’t outplay us as such. They got in about the midfield and won challenges, that should be a fundamental. We decided to play backwards and it put us in trouble and it gave us a mountain to climb.
“I know more about the players now. I need to get more from them.”
Hamilton Accies manager Alex Neil:
“It’s a magnificent result. I thought the performance merited the scoreline.
“We created a lot of chances. To score five goals at home against your local rivals and to keep a clean sheet is so pleasing for everyone involved with Hamilton. The lads work so hard. We know what we are doing, we are organised and we saw that today.
“Obviously, when the opposition are on the ball we want to get it back. When we get it, the front five or six players have got a free licence to attack and get at the opposition. I couldn’t be any happier with them. Their work ethic and everything it takes to be a good team and a good player, they’ve got.”