Scottish Premiership
St Johnstone1Motherwell1

St Johnstone 1-1 Motherwell

St Johnstone celebrate a goal by Chris Kane (centre)
Chris Kane (centre) equalised for St Johnstone

Chris Kane's fortunate equaliser for St Johnstone denied Motherwell a rare win at McDiarmid Park.

Zander Clark has been in fine form, but the keeper looked at fault as Richard Tait's cross ended up in the net.

Well just about deserved the lead, but Saints came close to an equaliser just before the break when Steven MacLean was denied by a Craig Samson save.

That came when Kane's first attempt was blocked by Samson but rebounded off the striker into the net.

The draw ended a sequence of three 2-1 wins for St Johnstone over Motherwell.

But it also ended Well's run of six defeats at McDiarmid Park since November 2012.

Positive and negative

St Johnstone started positively and had three decent chances in the opening five minutes.

Michael Coulson's corner picked out Brian Easton on the run and his left foot strike was deflected wide by a visiting defender.

From the following corner, Murray Davidson looped a header over the bar then Kane connected with an Easton cross to flick it wide of the target.

But for all that positivity, an unexpected negative for Saints appeared at the other end in the shape of goalkeeper Clark.

After two successive clean sheets, he produced a howler of a mistake to give Motherwell the early lead.

As the keeper went to cut out Tait's low cross from the right on his six yard line, he somehow managed to turn the ball behind him into the corner of his own net with an extraordinary fumble.

As Tait took the acclaim of his teammates, Clark, who has been impressive since breaking into Saints first-team, could only look on in embarrassment.

Solid Steelmen

Motherwell's Richard Tait and Keith Lasley celebrate
Richard Tait (left) opened the scoring for Motherwell

Tam Scobbie, who replaced Steven Anderson at the heart of the home defence, showed his threat in the opposition box as Saints looked for an equaliser.

His downward header from another corner kick was cleared off the line by Craig Clay.

Motherwell's three-man defence of Ben Heneghan, Stephen McManus and David Ferguson showed they weren't standing on ceremony when the ball entered their area.

Their no-nonsense defending was effective and they were helped out by goalkeeper Craig Samson in thwarting Steven MacLean in the final minute of the first half when he dived to his left to turn the striker's header from a Chris Millar cross round the post.

Fortune favours the brave

Samson produced another fine save early in the second half to keep out a Davidson header at his right-hand post.

However, just after the hour mark, good fortune favoured the home side as they pulled level.

MacLean was found by substitute Blair Alston inside the box and it was headed into the path of Kane six yards out.

The striker's initial effort was blocked by Samson, but Kane got lucky as the ball rebounded back off his body and bounced into the net for his fourth goal of the season.

Alston came close to putting Saints ahead, but his shot was well saved by Samson.

Match reaction

St Johnstone Tommy Wright: "We had the lion's share of possession and we used that well with some quality football played getting into the last third and getting in some great crosses.

"Samson's made two or three great saves and we've probably been guilty of not being clinical enough.

"But I always think in this league, when you go one goal down, it's difficult to get back in games, so I was pleased with the character of the team to get back in the game.

"On another day, we could have got another goal and won the game, but the performance excellent and we recovered well from that early setback.

"To be fair, Motherwell might have had a shout for penalty, but we went up the field and equalised and I think it was nothing more than we deserved because we've dominated the game."

Motherwell manager Mark McGhee: "The first half I was quite content with our approach, our application, everything was good and we got the goal.

"But the second half was excruciating. We never really got out, we never really got a hold of the ball, so it was really hard work.

"A point here is a great point regardless of the circumstances because we've lost here regularly and St Johnstone put you under pressure and work every so hard.

"They have a good way about them and Steven MacLean leads the line brilliantly for them.

"Craig Samson made a few good saves for us. He's had a great season and he continues to make a great contribution."

Line-ups

St Johnstone

  • 12Clark
  • 19FosterBooked at 90mins
  • 14Shaughnessy
  • 3Scobbie
  • 24Easton
  • 17CoulsonSubstituted forAlstonat 45'minutes
  • 7MillarSubstituted forPatonat 70'minutes
  • 8Davidson
  • 10Wotherspoon
  • 9MacLean
  • 25KaneSubstituted forCumminsat 83'minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Mannus
  • 4Alston
  • 18Paton
  • 22Watson
  • 23Gordon
  • 29Cummins
  • 33Hunter

Motherwell

  • 1Samson
  • 2Tait
  • 4Heneghan
  • 6McManus
  • 25FergusonSubstituted forLucasat 59'minutes
  • 12Cadden
  • 14LasleySubstituted forAinsworthat 74'minutes
  • 20Clay
  • 30McMillanSubstituted forBowmanat 82'minutes
  • 9MoultBooked at 77mins
  • 77McDonald

Substitutes

  • 7Ainsworth
  • 11Bowman
  • 13Brill
  • 18Lucas
  • 23Thomas
  • 33Maguire
  • 43Turnbull
Referee:
William Collum
Attendance:
2,836

Match Stats

Home TeamSt JohnstoneAway TeamMotherwell
Possession
Home64%
Away36%
Shots
Home8
Away4
Shots on Target
Home5
Away1
Corners
Home11
Away0
Fouls
Home9
Away5

Live Text

Match ends, St. Johnstone 1, Motherwell 1.

Full Time

Second Half ends, St. Johnstone 1, Motherwell 1.

Attempt missed. David Wotherspoon (St. Johnstone) right footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses the top right corner.

Booking

Richard Foster (St. Johnstone) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Richard Foster (St. Johnstone).

Lionel Ainsworth (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Murray Davidson (St. Johnstone).

Craig Clay (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Richard Tait.

Attempt missed. Scott McDonald (Motherwell) right footed shot from a difficult angle and long range on the left is too high from a direct free kick.

Substitution

Substitution, St. Johnstone. Graham Cummins replaces Christopher Kane.

Foul by Christopher Kane (St. Johnstone).

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

Substitution

Substitution, Motherwell. Ryan Bowman replaces Jack McMillan because of an injury.

Booking

Louis Moult (Motherwell) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Joe Shaughnessy (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Louis Moult (Motherwell).

Substitution

Substitution, Motherwell. Lionel Ainsworth replaces Keith Lasley.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Stephen McManus.

Substitution

Substitution, St. Johnstone. Paul Paton replaces Chris Millar.

Foul by Chris Millar (St. Johnstone).

Lionel Ainsworth (Motherwell) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Ben Heneghan.

Goal!

Goal! St. Johnstone 1, Motherwell 1. Christopher Kane (St. Johnstone) with an attempt from very close range to the bottom left corner.

Attempt saved. Chris Cadden (Motherwell) header from very close range is saved in the centre of the goal.

Attempt missed. Murray Davidson (St. Johnstone) header from the left side of the six yard box is high and wide to the left.

Christopher Kane (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Stephen McManus (Motherwell).

Substitution

Substitution, Motherwell. Lee Lucas replaces David Ferguson.

Foul by Steven MacLean (St. Johnstone).

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

Attempt saved. Tam Scobbie (St. Johnstone) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Jack McMillan.

Attempt saved. Murray Davidson (St. Johnstone) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Keith Lasley.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by David Ferguson.

Second Half

Second Half begins St. Johnstone 0, Motherwell 1.

Half Time

First Half ends, St. Johnstone 0, Motherwell 1.

Attempt saved. Steven MacLean (St. Johnstone) header from long range on the right is saved in the bottom left corner.

Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Craig Samson.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic16151046133346
2Rangers1810532518735
3Aberdeen1784529171228
4Hearts1877432221028
5St Johnstone176652320324
6Ross County184861929-1020
7Kilmarnock184771630-1419
8Motherwell174582128-717
9Hamilton1821061925-616
10Dundee1844101524-916
11Inverness CT183782334-1116
12Partick Thistle173681927-815
View full Scottish Premiership table

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