Scottish Premiership
Ross County3Motherwell2

Ross County 3-2 Motherwell

Ross County won at home for just the second time this season to move within three points of Motherwell at the foot of the Premiership.

Martin Woods hammered the hosts in front with a stunning volley, with Conor Grant levelling from a free-kick.

Former 'Well defender Paul Quinn thumped in a header to restore County's lead and Raffaele de Vita added another impressive volley for the Staggies.

Fraser Kerr knocked in a header on 78 minutes but the Highlanders held on.

Motherwell did not lose any ground on 10th-placed St Mirren - who lost at home to Inverness CT - but the Steelmen remain in the play-off spot, having picked up just one point from their last seven outings.

The visitors had started brightly and Fraser Kerr should have capitalised on a number of of free headers from Grant deliveries.

But the home side gradually gained control and crucially capitalised as their influence on the match peaked.

An intricate move ended with Woods playing a neat one-two with Liam Boyce to fire a tremendous dipping volley low past goalkeeper George Long.

County were determined and posed a real attacking threat but Motherwell found a route back early in the second half.

Debutant Grant sized up a free-kick and curled in a lovely left-footed effort which eluded the defensive wall and keeper Mark Brown.

It was a head-in-hands moment for home fans who presumably feared the worst given County's home record this season.

However, County demonstrated real character by surging ahead in a period of the match which proved decisive.

Quinn rose above everyone in the area to connect with a flighted De Vita free-kick and powered a header home against his former club.

Fraser Kerr powered in a header for Motherwell but the visitors could not find a leveller
Fraser Kerr powered in a header for Motherwell but the visitors could not find a leveller

Home fans were now ecstatic, and further so, when their third goal arrived in fine style as another cross from the right flank evaded a despairing defensive leap.

De Vita came surging in from the left with perfect timing to connect with a thunderous volley which proved unstoppable.

Just when it seemed Jim McIntyre's side might ease to a rare victory, Motherwell upped the ante with their second goal.

A simple corner arrived in the six yard box, where Kerr was on hand to nod in off the underside of the crossbar.

That goal came with 12 minutes remaining and set up as tense a finish as you could imagine, with County willing the ball away from their goal as the seconds ticked away.

And the hosts held out for just their third win of a frustrating campaign to breathe life into their bid for top flight survival.

Line-ups

Ross County

  • 21Brown
  • 44FraserBooked at 69mins
  • 5Boyd
  • 43Quinn
  • 12ReckordBooked at 64mins
  • 26Woods
  • 36IrvineBooked at 55mins
  • 24De VitaSubstituted forDingwallat 70'minutesBooked at 77mins
  • 40GardyneSubstituted forKissat 83'minutes
  • 11CurranSubstituted forSernasat 90+4'minutes
  • 16Boyce

Substitutes

  • 1Reguero
  • 7Cardle
  • 10Kiss
  • 20Sernas
  • 29Macleod
  • 30Dingwall
  • 38Burgess

Motherwell

  • 1Long
  • 2Reid
  • 6McManus
  • 5RamsdenBooked at 80mins
  • 20Kerr
  • 46ThomasSubstituted forJohnsonat 59'minutes
  • 47GrantSubstituted forAinsworthat 87'minutes
  • 14LasleySubstituted forMooreat 65'minutes
  • 44Straker
  • 19Erwin
  • 9Sutton

Substitutes

  • 4Carswell
  • 7Ainsworth
  • 12Twardzik
  • 18Law
  • 22Moore
  • 24Johnson
  • 26Thomas
Referee:
Calum Murray
Attendance:
2,982

Match Stats

Home TeamRoss CountyAway TeamMotherwell
Possession
Home49%
Away51%
Shots
Home11
Away7
Shots on Target
Home7
Away5
Corners
Home8
Away7
Fouls
Home13
Away15

Live Text

Match ends, Ross County 3, Motherwell 2.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Ross County 3, Motherwell 2.

Substitution

Substitution, Ross County. Darvydas Sernas replaces Craig Curran.

Craig Curran (Ross County) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Anthony Straker (Motherwell).

Foul by Filip Kiss (Ross County).

Marvin Johnson (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Paul Quinn (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Lee Erwin (Motherwell).

Substitution

Substitution, Motherwell. Lionel Ainsworth replaces Conor Grant because of an injury.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Anthony Straker.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Fraser Kerr.

Foul by Filip Kiss (Ross County).

Anthony Straker (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Ross County. Filip Kiss replaces Michael Gardyne.

Booking

Simon Ramsden (Motherwell) is shown the yellow card.

Liam Boyce (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Simon Ramsden (Motherwell).

Goal!

Goal! Ross County 3, Motherwell 2. Fraser Kerr (Motherwell) header from very close range to the top right corner following a corner.

Corner, Motherwell. Conceded by Marcus Fraser.

Booking

Tony Dingwall (Ross County) is shown the yellow card.

Foul by Tony Dingwall (Ross County).

Craig Reid (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Craig Reid.

Jamie Reckord (Ross County) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Lee Erwin (Motherwell).

Substitution

Substitution, Ross County. Tony Dingwall replaces Raffaele De Vita.

Booking

Marcus Fraser (Ross County) is shown the yellow card.

Foul by Marcus Fraser (Ross County).

Marvin Johnson (Motherwell) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Attempt missed. Paul Quinn (Ross County) header from the left side of the six yard box is just a bit too high.

Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Fraser Kerr.

Substitution

Substitution, Motherwell. Craig Moore replaces Keith Lasley.

Booking

Jamie Reckord (Ross County) is shown the yellow card.

Foul by Jamie Reckord (Ross County).

Craig Reid (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Goal!

Goal! Ross County 3, Motherwell 1. Raffaele De Vita (Ross County) left footed shot from the left side of the box to the top right corner. Assisted by Michael Gardyne.

Substitution

Substitution, Motherwell. Marvin Johnson replaces Nathan Thomas.

Goal!

Goal! Ross County 2, Motherwell 1. Paul Quinn (Ross County) from a free kick with a header to the top right corner.

Jackson Irvine (Ross County) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic24183348133557
2Aberdeen24163541212051
3Inverness CT25163637231451
4Dundee Utd24143748331545
5Hamilton2612593932741
6Dundee269983838036
7St Johnstone25104112227-534
8Kilmarnock2595112632-632
9Partick Thistle2567123232025
10St Mirren2653182143-2218
11Motherwell2553171849-3118
12Ross County2536162451-2715
View full Scottish Premiership table

Top Stories