Match ends, Motherwell 1, Partick Thistle 0.
Motherwell 1-0 Partick Thistle
Motherwell made it two wins in a row for new manager Ian Baraclough thanks to John Sutton's first-half penalty.
Lionel Ainsworth was impeded by Stuart Bannigan and Sutton converted on 14 minutes as the hosts dominated the first half at Fir Park.
Partick Thistle improved after the interval and had the hosts pinned back for long spells.
However, the Steelmen held firm to move within three points of the Jags, who have won once in their last five.
Motherwell, though, are on a more encouraging run in the early days of Baraclough's reign and got off to a good start at Fir Park.
Ainsworth's pace took him into the box, where he had his shirt tugged by Bannigan.
Referee Brian Colvin took his time before eventually pointing to the spot but, once he did, Sutton stepped up to send Paul Gallacher the wrong way.
The concession was self-inflicted and a further mistake also cost Thistle a second. Conrad Balatoni tried to play his way out of trouble but was caught by Sutton, whose effort was deflected wide.
Motherwell, heartened by their strong opening, took control.
Henrik Ojaama's shot from the edge of the 18-yard box had Gallacher diving low to his left and Dan Seaborne had to clear an Ainsworth cross after the winger again caused Bannigan problems.
It was almost half-time before Thistle had their first clear attempt on goal, but Ryan Stevenson's shot was tipped past by Dan Twardzik.
Alan Archibald's side were improved after the break, Gary Fraser shooting just past a post and substitute Steven Lawless volleying over from a similar distance.
Thistle then had a penalty claim rejected after Stevenson went down under a challenge, with the striker booked for his persistent protests.
With full time approaching, the visitors final chance fell to Kris Doolan, but his effort from 16 yards was blocked and Motherwell broke.
Substitute Lee Irwin streaked clear but struck his left foot shot wide from just 10 yards out.
- 15O'BrienSubstituted forKerrat 79'minutes
- 3HammellSubstituted forFergusonat 87'minutes
- 2ReidBooked at 80mins
- 9SuttonSubstituted forErwinat 75'minutes
- 8BanniganBooked at 90mins
- 22FraserSubstituted forEcclestonat 83'minutes
- 7CraigenSubstituted forLawlessat 53'minutes
- 10StevensonBooked at 62minsSubstituted forDoolanat 68'minutes
- Brian Colvin
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Motherwell 1, Partick Thistle 0.
Steven Lawless (Partick Thistle) is shown the yellow card.
Josh Law (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Danny Seaborne (Partick Thistle).
Corner, Partick Thistle. Conceded by Keith Lasley.
Substitution, Motherwell. David Ferguson replaces Steven Hammell.
Substitution, Partick Thistle. Nathan Eccleston replaces Gary Fraser.
Craig Reid (Motherwell) is shown the yellow card.
Foul by Craig Reid (Motherwell).
Kallum Higginbotham (Partick Thistle) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Substitution, Motherwell. Fraser Kerr replaces Mark O'Brien because of an injury.
Substitution, Motherwell. Lee Erwin replaces John Sutton.
Corner, Partick Thistle. Conceded by Steven Hammell.
Mark O'Brien (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Kallum Higginbotham (Partick Thistle).
Substitution, Partick Thistle. Kris Doolan replaces Ryan Stevenson.
Corner, Motherwell. Conceded by Stephen O'Donnell.
Keith Lasley (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Christie Elliott (Partick Thistle).