Scottish Premiership
Motherwell2Aberdeen1

Motherwell 2-1 Aberdeen

Aberdeen slipped four points behind Premiership leaders Celtic as they lost a lead and ended with 10 men against resurgent Motherwell at Fir Park.

Aberdeen's Kenny McLean converted a penalty on the stroke of half-time.

Scott McDonald levelled with an opportunistic header and Louis Moult made it two in two minutes when he clipped the ball beyond Scott Brown.

The Dons then had Barry Robson sent off for elbowing McDonald moments after coming off the bench.

It has been a remarkable week at Fir Park, ending with a fifth win in six matches for the Steelmen.

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Interviews: McGhee and McInnes

Before kick-off there was bad news for the hosts when it emerged that James McFadden, whose season has been peppered by dreadful luck, had broken his ankle in training.

And Mark McGhee confessed the former Scotland star would have started in a line-up which showed three changes after a midweek virus had threatened to tear the manager's plans apart.

Aberdeen did everything but score in the opening spell in the glorious Lanarkshire sunshine, with Connor Ripley saving well from Dons skipper Ryan Jack and Simon Church pulling a shot wide, while McLean should have hit the target with a free header.

Motherwell's first real effort arrived after 21 minutes and it was beautifully engineered. Moult's cross was taken first time on the half volley by Marvin Johnson and the ball only just cleared the crossbar.

Moult then rattled Brown's right hand post after a headed lay-off from McDonald.

But the decisive period of the half came on 44 minutes after Motherwell were denied a free kick for a foul on Johnson right in front of the home dug-out. Referee Don Roberston waved play on and, following a sequence of fizzing passes, Jonny Hayes broke into the box only to be floored by Kieran Kennedy.

Barry Robson was sent off moments after coming on as a substitute
Robson was sent off for catching his former Celtic team-mate McDonald with an elbow

McLean scored from the penalty spot and as the teams left the pitch at half-time a clearly furious McGhee and Johnson waited to confront the official about the absence of a foul in their favour.

But the hosts' fury turned to delight after a spirited comeback in the second period.

Ripley was at full-stretch to push away a fierce McLean strike and an improvised overhead kick from Church grazed the crossbar as Aberdeen threatened on the break.

But McDonald, who once famously denied Celtic a title in a Motherwell jersey, this time did the champions a favour when he finished a game of head tennis with a looping equaliser on 72 minutes.

Moult then stunned the title hopefuls with a cute lob, taking advantage of a mix up between Mark Reynolds and goalkeeper Brown.

Aberdeen's afternoon got even worse when substitute Robson was red carded after catching McDonald with a leading elbow and there was no way back for the 10 men.

Line-ups

Motherwell

  • 1Ripley
  • 18Law
  • 16KennedyBooked at 44mins
  • 6McManus
  • 3Hammell
  • 26CaddenSubstituted forAinsworthat 49'minutes
  • 21LeitchBooked at 51mins
  • 17GomisBooked at 34mins
  • 11Johnson
  • 77McDonald
  • 20MoultSubstituted forFletcherat 87'minutes

Substitutes

  • 7Ainsworth
  • 9Fletcher
  • 13Samson
  • 15Chalmers
  • 23Thomas
  • 28Watt
  • 35Campbell

Aberdeen

  • 20Brown
  • 2Logan
  • 5Taylor
  • 6Reynolds
  • 4ConsidineSubstituted forRobsonat 78'minutesBooked at 79mins
  • 11Hayes
  • 7McLean
  • 22Jack
  • 3Shinnie
  • 10McGinn
  • 18Church

Substitutes

  • 8Flood
  • 14Smith
  • 15Robson
  • 19Collin
  • 23Storie
  • 26McKenna
  • 27Wright
Referee:
Don Robertson
Attendance:
6,251

Match Stats

Home TeamMotherwellAway TeamAberdeen
Possession
Home52%
Away48%
Shots
Home9
Away13
Shots on Target
Home4
Away8
Corners
Home4
Away3
Fouls
Home12
Away5

Live Text

Match ends, Motherwell 2, Aberdeen 1.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Motherwell 2, Aberdeen 1.

Shaleum Logan (Aberdeen) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Marvin Johnson (Motherwell).

Attempt blocked. Marvin Johnson (Motherwell) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

Attempt saved. Simon Church (Aberdeen) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Attempt saved. Wes Fletcher (Motherwell) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Substitution

Substitution, Motherwell. Wes Fletcher replaces Louis Moult.

Attempt missed. Lionel Ainsworth (Motherwell) left footed shot from the right side of the box is close, but misses to the right.

Attempt saved. Jonny Hayes (Aberdeen) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

Foul by Morgaro Gomis (Motherwell).

Jonny Hayes (Aberdeen) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Louis Moult (Motherwell).

Mark Reynolds (Aberdeen) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Corner, Motherwell. Conceded by Ash Taylor.

Dismissal

Barry Robson (Aberdeen) is shown the red card for violent conduct.

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

Foul by Barry Robson (Aberdeen).

Substitution

Substitution, Aberdeen. Barry Robson replaces Andrew Considine.

Goal!

Goal! Motherwell 2, Aberdeen 1. Louis Moult (Motherwell) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the high centre of the goal. Assisted by Steven Hammell.

Goal!

Goal! Motherwell 1, Aberdeen 1. Scott McDonald (Motherwell) header from the right side of the six yard box to the top left corner. Assisted by Marvin Johnson.

Attempt missed. Lionel Ainsworth (Motherwell) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

Attempt missed. Simon Church (Aberdeen) header from very close range is just a bit too high following a corner.

Corner, Aberdeen. Conceded by Connor Ripley.

Attempt saved. Kenny McLean (Aberdeen) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

Attempt blocked. Niall McGinn (Aberdeen) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.

Corner, Motherwell. Conceded by Andrew Considine.

Foul by Ash Taylor (Aberdeen).

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

Foul by Andrew Considine (Aberdeen).

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

Attempt saved. Kenny McLean (Aberdeen) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Booking

Jack Leitch (Motherwell) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Jonny Hayes (Aberdeen) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Jack Leitch (Motherwell).

Substitution

Substitution, Motherwell. Lionel Ainsworth replaces Chris Cadden because of an injury.

Attempt missed. Ryan Jack (Aberdeen) left footed shot from the centre of the box is just a bit too high.

Second Half

Second Half begins Motherwell 0, Aberdeen 1.

Half Time

First Half ends, Motherwell 0, Aberdeen 1.

Attempt saved. Niall McGinn (Aberdeen) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top left corner.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic30216373235069
2Aberdeen31205652341865
3Hearts30168651292256
4St Johnstone31127124847143
5Motherwell31125143846-841
6Ross County31124154550-540
7Partick Thistle30107133138-737
8Dundee2981294043-336
9Inverness CT3099123741-436
10Hamilton3189143451-1733
11Kilmarnock3177173054-2428
12Dundee Utd2955193053-2320
View full Scottish Premiership table

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