Motherwell produced a solid performance on the road to win 2-1 against St Johnstone at McDiarmid Park.
Goals from Tom Aldred and Danny Johnson marked the Steelmen’s first win on the Saints home turf in six years, and it was a resolute performance from start to finish for Stephen Robinson’s men.
The ‘Well boss made two changes from the narrow 1-0 defeat against Hearts last weekend, recalling Allan Campbell to the middle of the park and Christian Mbulu to the right hand side of a back three as Andy Rose and Alex Rodriguez-Gorrin dropped out of the starting eleven.
And before Tommy Wright’s side could settle in to the game in Perth, ‘Well found themselves a goal up after just two minutes.
David Turnbull’s corner was turned home by the arriving Aldred at the back post before Robinson’s side went on to dominate the opening stages of the match.
And soon enough, it was two. Turnbull was again involved, but his scuffed effort on goal was dealt a slice of luck when it fell kindly for the lurking Johnson.
Despite being faced with the lunging presence of Zander Clark, the striker kept his nerve and produced a deft finish to lift the ball high and beyond the Saints stopper to double the lead and bag his sixth league goal of the season.
Momentum swung in favour of the hosts for the latter stages of the first half, but they couldn’t produce the quality required to get the better of a solid Motherwell back line.
However, a brief lapse from Charles Dunne resulted in a penalty for a handball, and a golden opportunity was presented to the Perthshire side to halve the deficit.
Fresh off the back of his penalty saving heroics against Celtic though, Mark Gillespie stepped up and produced a terrific save to turn the ball round the post.
The second half started similarly to the first, with the Lanarkshire outfit controlling the match but unlike the first 45, they couldn’t convert.
Johnson was unfortunate to see a blatant shirt pull deny him a free header home midway through the second period, and it was equally unfortunate that referee Alan Muir didn’t point to the spot.
A late header from Jason Kerr pulled a consolation back for the hosts, but Robinson’s men showed their steel to hold on for all three points at a ground which proved hard to conquer in recent years.