Motherwell made it three consecutive cinch Premiership league wins to climb above Aberdeen and leave the Fir Park fans celebrating a tremendous win.
Kevin van Veen’s headed goal midway through the first half gave ‘Well a lead to defend.
Despite the Dons dominating possession and with Liam Kelly defiant, the game was settled just before the hour mark when Juhani Ojala headed home his first ‘Well goal.
Most recent signing Norwegian Sondre Solholm Johansen made his debut alongside Finnish internationalist Ojala, with Uganda internationalist Bevis Mugabi and Nathan McGinley forming a back four.
There was a new look about both teams following summer signings and the first time Stephen Glass and Graham Alexander have come face to face as managers.
It was also a first return to Fir Park for Declan Gallagher had the first chance after 13 minutes when he got his head to Ross McCrorie’s free-kick but the former ‘Well captain directed the ball wide of Liam Kelly’s goal.
Ten minutes later the Fir Park ‘keeper was tested. Calvin Ramsay’s cross found Marley Watkins unmarked six yards in front of goal. He only managed to head the ball straight at Kelly who palmed the ball down before bravely smothering the ball at the striker’s feet.
The Dons almost paid for that miss after 25 minutes when Tony Watt nodded Mark O’Hara’s corner down and wide of goal.
A minute later, though, the home side found the target.
Watt was clipped by McCrorie as they chased a long through ball but referee John Beaton gave ‘Well the advantage.
Kaiyne Woolery made the most of it whipping the ball to the back of the six-yard box where van Veen stooped to head home his second goal of the season.
Unlucky to find themselves behind, Aberdeen had a quick opportunity to draw level but from an angle, Lewis Ferguson’s powerful drive was palmed over his crossbar by Kelly.
The Motherwell ‘keeper was a busy man up until the interval as Dons pressed for an equaliser.
Eight minutes from the break Kelly firmly held the ball after Ramsay finished his jinking run with a fine shot on goal.
The Dons’ full-back was again on target minutes later with a thumping drive which rebounded from Kelly’s chest only to watch Watkins scoop the ball over the bar, before an assistant’s flag was raised for offside.
Despite Aberdeen’s possession and pressure around the home goal, the Fir Park defenders held firm to protect their narrow lead until the interval.
The pattern of play continued after the break and Kelly had to look lively to twice denied efforts from Marley Watkins.
Then in the 59th minute and very much against the run of play ‘Well doubled their lead. Mark O’Hara’s slipped his free-kick wide to van Veen which allowed the Dutchman to deliver a tempting cross into the six-yard box.
Mugabi and Ojala both towered to claim it but it was the Finn who powered his header home via the underside of the bar to celebrate his first Motherwell goal.
It was nearly 3-0 two minutes later when Joe Lewis had to backtrack to scoop van Veen’s cross-cum-shot from under his crossbar and then watch as Liam Grimshaw forced the ball over the bar.
Another speedy break and low delivery from Woolery just evaded Watt and van Veen as shell shocked Dons almost fell further behind.
After that Motherwell held on comfortably as the Dons ran out of ideas.
Motherwell: Kelly, Mugabi, Ojala, Solholm, McGinley, Slattery, O’Hara, Grimshaw, Watt (Maguire), Woolery (Lamie), Van Veen (Goss).
Subs: Fox,,Donnelly, Amaluzor, Shields.