Phil McGhee Fir Park
Motherwell recorded their first home win of the season with a Louis Moult penalty separating the two sides.
After four consecutive league defeats it was a very welcome three points as, at the third attempt, ‘Well managed to hold onto an early lead.
However, despite the trickery and promptings of Dom Thomas over a very impressive ninety minutes,’Well failed to add to their early goal, which subsequently made the last ten minutes more nervous than it should have been.
After his league cup appearance in midweek, Kieran Kennedy made his league debut alongside Stephen McManus at the heart of the ‘Well defence and they did well to blunt the physical threat of Josh Magennis and Kris Boyd. The reshaped defence also included Joe Chalmers at left back for the injured Stevie Hammell.
It was a first start of the season for Thomas who was aiming to supply Louis Moult who kept his place in attack, leaving latest recruit Theo Robinson on the bench. And it was the lively Thomas who set ‘Well on the front foot bursting into the Killie box to earn a corner followed by a similar burst from Scott McDonald only to fire over the bar.
As the Fir Parkers buzzed about the visitor’s box Lionel Ainsworth and then Keith Lasley had powerful shots blocked.
A slick moved when McDonald’s weighted pass sent Thomas in behind might have resulted in the opener but the winger’s fierce shot was palmed over by Jamie MacDonald.
When the breakthrough finally arrived after 13 minutes there was an element of good furtune when Mark O’Hara’s clumsy challenge felled Moult inside the box. The ‘Well striker showed little sympathy, though, when he steered the resultant penalty kick low past the ‘keeper for his third goal in three games.
Four minutes later it took a brilliant block from Connor Ripley to prevent Magennis firing home the equaliser. That aside the ‘Well ‘keeper had a quiet afternoon especially in the first half as Motherwell still looked the more likely to score. Thomas’quick feet opened up another chance for a drive at goal before ‘Well had the ball in the net twelve minutes from the break.
Another superb pass from Thomas set up Moult who quickly fired the ball beyond MacDonald only to be harshly judged from an offside position.
As half time approached ‘Well’s early buzz had disappeared and Kilmarnock probably relieved that they were only one behind.
That prompted Gary Locke to bring on Tope Obadeyi at the break and provide the visitors with a powerful front three.
However, it was the delicate touches from Thomas that caught the eye and after fleecing O’Hara on the left a couple of times his crosses into the box found no takers.
In an attempt to find a decisive second goal Ian Baraclough swapped strikers for the last half hour with the tireless Moult making way for debutant Theo Robinson before Marvin Johnson replaced Ainsworth.
It was Robinson who looked to impress with a combination of speed and strength although his first effort on goal after 72 minutes was well over the target. A minute later Chalmers burst upfield to drive a low left foot shot a few yards wide of the post.
With 15 minutes remaining and Killie still hoping for an equaliser Louis Laing came into the back four at the expense of Jack Leitch.
In the end the ‘Well defence comfortably held out for a clean sheet and a win that could have been more convincing.
[tab:As it happened]
Ally Reilly at Fir Park
FT’ | 1-0
Louis Moult’s first half penalty separates the two sides and gives Motherwell the three points.
FT’ | 1-0
Full time whistle blows!!
93′ | 1-0
Robinson turns on the burners and gets away from one, but his shot from 25 yards is blocked.
91′ | 1-0
Free-kick delivery was decent but was headed over by Boyd.
91′ | 1-0
Chalmers booked for a foul about 30 yards out, wide on the right.
90′ | 1-0
Three minutes added on.
88′ | 1-0
Loose Killie ball out of defence gives Johnson the chance to cross but his front post ball has not takers.
84 | 1-0
Good play between McDonald and Thomas sets the Aussie up inside the box but his shot is tame and straight at MacDonald.
79′ | 1-0
Obadeyi chests the ball inside Chalmers but his shot is a tad ambitious as he volleys it well over the bar.
76′ | 1-0
Motherwell sub, Laing on for Leitch.
72′ | 1-0
Seconds later, Chalmers advances forward but his shot lacks the power and direction required and bobbles wide.
72′ | 1-0
Robinson spins 30 yards out and opts for a shot on his left foot. Well over the bar though.
71′ | 1-0
O’Hara’s shot is blocked for a corner….. Hamill’s delivery goes right though the box.
70′ | 1-0
Frustration as Robinson puts in a great ball but it just doesn’t fall for ‘Well player inside the box.
66′ | 1-0
Motherwell sub, Ainsworth makes way for Johnson
64′ | 1-0
Killie sub, Kiltie comes on for Magennis.
60′ | 1-0
Motherwell sub, Robinson makes his debut, replacing Louis Moult.
56′ | 1-0
Thomas skips past his man again and Ainsworth gets on the end of his delivery. Deflected wide for another corner…
54′ | 1-0
Ainsworth’s cross is deflected wide for a corner. Again though nothing comes of the delivery.
48′ | 1-0
Another Killie corner, this time headed away by Moult.
47′ | 1-0
Obadeyi knocks the ball off Law to earn Killie corner. ‘Well defended delivery clears the danger.
Killie get the second half underway. #COYW!
45′ | 1-0
Killie sub, Obadeyi on for Higginbotham
HT’ | 1-0
Half-time whistle blows, @louismoult’s penalty gives ‘Well a 1-0 lead going into the break.
39′ | 1-0
Close! Ainsworth cuts in from the right and on his weaker foot, gets a powerful shot away which drifts just over the bar!
34′ | 1-0
Looked tight but Moult is flagged offside after sliding the ball into the net. Hard to tell on first viewing.
30′ | 1-0
Action has slowed down a little. Not a lot of talking points…
22′ | 1-0
Half way through the first half, here’s a check on the match stats….
21′ | 1-0
Kilmarnock sub, Smith limps off for Westlake.
20′ | 1-0
Could be an early Killie change here. Smith looks to have pulled a muscle as he crossed the ball in…
18′ | 1-0
Seem to tweet this at least once a game but great save from Ripley!! Denies Magennis from close range with a big left hand.
12′ | 1-0
Moult steps up and makes it 1-0 from the spot! 3 in 3 for Moulty now!
12′ | 1-0
12′ | 0-0
Penalty to Motherwell!!
10′ | 0-0
Lovely through ball by McDonald sets Thomas free down the left. From a narrow angle, he forces MacDonald into a good save!
7′ | 0-0
Good opening spell from Motherwell. Couple of blocked shots from Thomas then Leitch. Forced a corner but no end product.
3′ | 0-0
McDonald picks the ball up and drives at the Killie defence. Gets a shot away from just inside the box but it flies over the bar.
1′ | 0-0
Thomas wins ‘Well the first corner of the game, headed clear by Boyd, though.
Lasley and McDonald get the game underway. #COYW
Motherwell manager Ian Baraclough:
Kilmarnock manager Gary Locke: