Scottish Premiership
Motherwell0Inverness CT3

Motherwell 0-3 Inverness CT

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Highlights: Motherwell 0-3 Inverness CT

Inverness Caledonian Thistle moved into the Premiership top six with a fine victory over Motherwell at Fir Park.

Carl Tremarco gave Inverness the lead with a left footed shot after getting to Brad McKay's cross.

Lonsana Doumbouya made it two when a corner kick fell straight to him right in front of the goal, and he happily poked it beyond goalkeeper Craig Samson.

And Liam Polworth picked his spot just inside the post to make it three.

Scrappy breakthrough

In general play, there was little between the two sides. The sense was of a stalemate, with the teams essentially cancelling each other out. With neither in control of the game, or able to build pressure, it was clear that only a moment of quality or scrappiness would deliver a breakthrough.

It was the latter that befell Motherwell defender Stephen McManus in the second half, since he awkwardly miscued an attempt to clear McKay's cross allowing the ball to run to Tremarco. Even then, the defender was hardly decisive in his finishing, and the ball skewed in off the underside of the crossbar.

There was a similar bout of indecision by Motherwell defenders at the heart of the second goal, since they failed to clear a corner kick, eventually letting the ball drop to Doumbouya. The striker didn't hesitate in stabbing it into the net past the Motherwell goalkeeper Samson.

Toil and endeavour

This was a game built on industry. There was a tireless effort at the heart of both sides, particularly in central midfield. Keith Lasley - who is still capable of neat footwork to leave an opponent trailing - and Chris Cadden worked the midfield for Motherwell, while Greg Tansey and Ross Draper did the same for Inverness.

Their efforts meant that the encounter was always finely balanced - with the two sides also sharing an inability to deliver penetrating attacks. Motherwell would have hoped for more from the strike partnership of Louis Moult and Ryan Bowman, although they did combine neatly in the first half for the former to shoot into the side-netting.

There was still room for a moment of genuine quality, though, with Polworth finally finding his range with a effort from outside the area late in the game. He'd speared a couple of shots over earlier, but when the ball ran to him 22 yards out, he lashed it low, hard and accurately into the bottom corner, past the outstretched arm of Samson.

Fir Park frustration

There was a moment during the first-half when Motherwell manager Mark McGhee turned to a fan in the stand and sharply reminded him that the player the supporter had been grumbling about was still only a teenager. Members of this Motherwell side remain a work in progress, but the fans lacked patience as the game ran away from their team.

When Doumbouya scored the second goal, some of the home fans immediately started heading for the exit. Their team had lacked a cutting edge, and the frustration would have felt more acute because there had been so little between the sides until the second goal.

Under McGhee, the likes of Chris Cadden, Ross MacLean and Jack McMillan will continue to develop. There will be highs and lows along the way.

Manager reaction

Motherwell's Mark McGhee: "First-half I thought it was neck and neck. I thought we just needed to find a bit more accuracy with our final ball, but I thought the second half was diabolical.

"It's difficult to say if there was any difference up to the goal, but after that we just had no unity, no team work, we suddenly became a group of individuals. At that point, it looked to me as if we had no chance of getting back into the game because we'd lost it.

"It's the first time that's happened and I'd say that's probably the most disappointing 45 minutes that I've had since I've been back. I need to find why that was. We've had a good chat in the dressing room, we've spoken about a few things, we'll train tomorrow and Friday and hopefully we'll be ready for Ross County.

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Well 'diabolical' against ICT - McGhee

"I don't know if I didn't see it coming. I sensed that there's been a little bit of lethargy since the Celtic game, I've hoped it wasn't what I was really feeling, but it surfaced tonight in the second half. We now know and we have to put it right.

"I know they can [bounce back], they're capable of that but they have to do that. Having done it in the past, what they have to do now is reunite, as a group get together and go out and believe in each other, work for each other, and stay united as long as whatever happens out there. That team spirit just evaporated after the first goal."

Inverness CT's Richie Foran: "It was an outstanding performance, a near-perfect performance. We tinkered with our formation a wee bit, I wanted to isolate a couple of our players, to play to their strengths, and we brought in Aaron Doran, a total footballer who's comfortable taking the ball in with his back to goal and he was immense for us.

"I'm delighted all round, a clean sheet for us away from home, at Fir Park, a tough place to come. I can't speak any more highly of the lads.

"I always feel we'll score goals. I was looking for a clean sheet. I questioned the lads, I questioned their ability a wee bit. They'd given us the team spirit, they'd given us the fight, the desire, the hunger, and I said I was looking for quality tonight. They certainly showed that.

"There was some great play all over the park, our fitness levels were spot on, and once again we're finishing the game stronger, we're going right to the final whistle, so it was good. I'm delighted for the back four getting that clean sheet.

"A draw away from home is good in the Premiership, a win is great and gives us a lot of confidence."

Line-ups

Motherwell

  • 1Samson
  • 2Tait
  • 4Heneghan
  • 6McManus
  • 30McMillan
  • 12Cadden
  • 14Lasley
  • 20ClaySubstituted forMcFaddenat 77'minutes
  • 27MacLeanSubstituted forAinsworthat 78'minutes
  • 9Moult
  • 11BowmanSubstituted forMcDonaldat 64'minutes

Substitutes

  • 7Ainsworth
  • 13Brill
  • 18Lucas
  • 24McFadden
  • 25Ferguson
  • 34Hastie
  • 77McDonald

Inverness CT

  • 25Fon Williams
  • 22McKay
  • 5Warren
  • 6MeekingsSubstituted forRavenat 87'minutes
  • 3TremarcoBooked at 86mins
  • 16Tansey
  • 11Vigurs
  • 7Polworth
  • 8Draper
  • 10Doran CoganSubstituted forKingat 62'minutes
  • 26DoumbouyaSubstituted forBodenat 89'minutes

Substitutes

  • 2Raven
  • 15Mulraney
  • 17Horner
  • 19Boden
  • 20King
  • 31Mackay
Referee:
Don Robertson
Attendance:
3,131

Match Stats

Home TeamMotherwellAway TeamInverness CT
Possession
Home51%
Away49%
Shots
Home7
Away13
Shots on Target
Home0
Away6
Corners
Home4
Away4
Fouls
Home14
Away15

Live Text

Match ends, Motherwell 0, Inverness CT 3.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Motherwell 0, Inverness CT 3.

Attempt missed. Keith Lasley (Motherwell) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left.

Corner, Motherwell. Conceded by Carl Tremarco.

Substitution

Substitution, Inverness CT. Scott Boden replaces Lonsana Doumbouya.

Attempt missed. Lonsana Doumbouya (Inverness CT) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.

Attempt missed. Louis Moult (Motherwell) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left.

Substitution

Substitution, Inverness CT. David Raven replaces Josh Meekings.

Delay in match Richard Tait (Motherwell) because of an injury.

Booking

Carl Tremarco (Inverness CT) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Richard Tait (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Carl Tremarco (Inverness CT).

Foul by Chris Cadden (Motherwell).

Brad McKay (Inverness CT) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Goal!

Goal! Motherwell 0, Inverness CT 3. Liam Polworth (Inverness CT) right footed shot from outside the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Billy King.

Scott McDonald (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Josh Meekings (Inverness CT).

Corner, Inverness CT. Conceded by Craig Samson.

Chris Cadden (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Ross Draper (Inverness CT).

Attempt blocked. Lonsana Doumbouya (Inverness CT) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.

Substitution

Substitution, Motherwell. Lionel Ainsworth replaces Ross MacLean.

Substitution

Substitution, Motherwell. James McFadden replaces Craig Clay.

Louis Moult (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Iain Vigurs (Inverness CT).

Attempt missed. Louis Moult (Motherwell) right footed shot from outside the box is just a bit too high.

Stephen McManus (Motherwell) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Lonsana Doumbouya (Inverness CT).

Foul by Scott McDonald (Motherwell).

Josh Meekings (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Goal!

Goal! Motherwell 0, Inverness CT 2. Lonsana Doumbouya (Inverness CT) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the high centre of the goal following a corner.

Corner, Inverness CT. Conceded by Richard Tait.

Corner, Inverness CT. Conceded by Craig Samson.

Attempt saved. Liam Polworth (Inverness CT) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

Foul by Keith Lasley (Motherwell).

Billy King (Inverness CT) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Substitution

Substitution, Motherwell. Scott McDonald replaces Ryan Bowman.

Stephen McManus (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Lonsana Doumbouya (Inverness CT).

Substitution

Substitution, Inverness CT. Billy King replaces Aaron Doran.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic98103082225
2Aberdeen10532179818
3St Johnstone115331411318
4Hearts10523169717
5Rangers104421212016
6Inverness CT113441618-213
7Kilmarnock113441220-813
8Hamilton102531215-311
9Partick Thistle102441214-210
10Ross County11245818-1010
11Motherwell102351117-69
12Dundee11137918-96
View full Scottish Premiership table

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