Livingston 2-0 Motherwell: Below par Steelmen defeated in Scottish Premiership clash

A below par Motherwell side crashed to a 2-0 defeat at Livingston in Saturday's Scottish Premiership clash, writes Craig Goldthorp.

Curtis Main in action for Motherwell at Livingston on Saturday (Pic by Ian McFadyen)
Curtis Main in action for Motherwell at Livingston on Saturday (Pic by Ian McFadyen)

Goals in either half from Steven Lawless and Craig Halkett condemned the Steelmen to a disappointing loss at the Tony Macaroni Arena.

The result was a real blow to Motherwell who had gone into the game in a buoyant mood after thrashing Aberdeen 3-0 last Saturday.

Yet the away side started well for the opening five minutes on the much maligned artificial surface, where they had won 1-0 in a Betfred Cup second round tie on August 18.

Motherwell's first chance came after just three minutes when David Turnbull's fizzed cross from the left was powerfully headed towards goal by Curtis Main but home keeper Liam Kelly superbly turned the ball around the post.

But referee Euan Anderson blew up for a foul by the English striker.

Motherwell goalkeeper Mark Gillespie produced a fantastic point blank save from Steven Lawless after a long throw into the box on 15 minutes.

But Livi took the lead after 23 minutes when a long throw in broke for Lawless and his low left footed effort from the edge of the box beat Gillespie at his near post.

Nicky Cadden - brother of Motherwell's injured ace Chris Cadden - produced a surging 27th minute run before firing wildly off target.

The hosts' Jack Hamilton received a deserved 34th minute booking after barging into 'Well defender Tom Aldred following a swirling cross into the box.

And Motherwell's Gael Bigirimana soon also saw yellow for a late challenge on Craig Halkett.

Hamilton shot wildly over with his left foot five minutes before half-time after a cross from the left.

In the 42nd minute, Ricki Lamie's driven cross from the left found Lawless, who swiftly powered in a shot which Tait blocked.

Tait was booked for a foul in the 63rd minute before the visitors swapped Main for Ryan Bowman up front.

The first half hour of the second half was uninspiring stuff before Motherwell came agonisingly close to equalising in the 78th minute when substitute Alex Gorrin's cross from the left was met at the back post by Barry Maguire but his effort was brilliantly scrambled round the post by Kelly.

Livingston killed off the game as a contest on 83 minutes when Halkett found space in the box to score with a flick header after Scott Robison's corner from the left.

'Well substitute Ryan Bowman had a powerful shot from a tight angle saved by Kelly in the 89th minute.

But all in all this was a largely poor display from 'Well who were soundly beaten.

Motherwell: Gillespie, Tait, Aldred, Mbulu, Maguire, Grimshaw, Bigirimana (Gorrin 45), Turnbull, Campbell (Frear 60), Johnson, Main (Bowman 63).

Referee: Euan Anderson

Crowd: 1982