A goal in either half from Henrik Ojamaa helped secure three points for Motherwell against St Johnstone at Fir Park.
Ojamaa's 22nd-minute strike from 12 yards was cancelled out on the stroke of half-time by a Jody Morris volley.
The Estonian regained the lead for the hosts in the 65th minute with another powerful strike.
A Keith Lasley shot dipped under the St Johnstone bar before Francisco Sandaza converted a penalty.
The win keeps Motherwell in third place in the Scottish Premier League table, six points ahead of fourth-placed Hearts, while St Johnstone remain one place further back in fifth.
Fir Park boss Stuart McCall made two changes to his starting 11 with Michael Higdon and Stephen Craigan absent due to suspension, presenting an opportunity for Omar Daley and Tim Clancy to play starting roles.
Meanwhile, St Johnstone manager Steve Lomas named an unchanged line-up from the team that defeated Hibernian 3-2 at Easter Road last Saturday.
In the opening minutes, Jamie Murphy's right-footed shot for Motherwell caught Peter Enckelman by surprise, but the ball drifted past the Finnish keeper's right-hand post.
Lee Croft set up Morris on the edge of the Motherwell penalty area, but the Englishman sent his shot wide of the target, then, moments later, Marcus Haber should have done better with close-range header that flew over the crossbar.
After 20 minutes, Sandaza blasted in a 20-yard free-kick from the edge of the Motherwell penalty area that curved around the wall, but the ball landed comfortably in the arms of Darren Randolph.
Two minutes later Ojamaa picked the ball up from wide on the right-hand side of the St Johnstone penalty area and fired low into the bottom left corner to put the hosts one up.
Moments later Steve Hammell clipped the top of the St Johnstone crossbar with a shot from 18 yards.
As half-time approached, Liam Craig delivered a free-kick from wide on the right-hand side that struck the underside of the Motherwell bar with Randolph scampering to reach it.
On the stroke of half-time, Morris volleyed in a sensational left-footed shot to the far corner to level the scores heading in to the dressing rooms.
Immediately after the restart, Craig tested Randolph again with a shot from distance, but the Motherwell keeper was equal to the task.
On the hour mark, Murray Davidson's swerving drive was pushed out for a corner by Randolph, then the big Irishman blocked a Sandaza shot to keep the scores level.
With 65 minutes played, Ojamaa scored his second of the afternoon, but not before losing his footing inside the St Johnstone penalty area. The Finn regained his balance then thundered a low drive past Enckelman to hand Motherwell the lead.
Moments later, Tom Hateley cut across the ball and blasted a shot over the St Johnstone crossbar.
With barely 15 minutes left on the clock, Lasley left Enckelman standing when he let loose a great strike that dipped under the St Johnstone crossbar.
A foul by Lasley on Davidson inside the penalty area resulted in a spot-kick that handed St Johnstone a lifeline, Sandaza stepping up to convert and give the Perth visitors a fighting chance with just under 10 minutes remaining.
However, a late effort from substitute Cillian Sheridan was kept out by Randolph and Motherwell held out to claim all three points.
- 01 Randolph
- 03 Hammell
- 15 Hutchinson
- 22 Clancy Booked
- 04 Law
- 06 Hateley
- 08 Jennings
- 14 Lasley
- 17 Daley
- 11 Murphy (Humphrey - 84' )
- 24 Ojamaa
- 31 Bradley
- 20 Page
- 07 Humphrey
- 26 Carswell
- 16 McHugh
- 18 Forbes
- 25 Lawleff
- 01 Enckelman
- 02 MacKay
- 03 Davidson
- 06 Anderson Booked
- 18 McCracken
- 04 Morris Booked
- 08 Davidson Booked
- 09 Croft
- 10 Craig (Sheridan - 77' )
- 21 Sandaza Booked
- 23 Haber (Compton - 68' )
- 15 Mannus
- 31 Moffat
- 07 Millar
- 34 Keiran Stewart
- 39 Gray
- 11 Sheridan
- 24 Compton
Live Text Commentary
Full Time The referee brings the game to a close.90:00 +2:17
Stevie Hammell takes the direct free kick.90:00 +2:17 Booking
Booking Jody Morris booked.90:00 +2:07
Omar Daley fouled by Jody Morris, the ref awards a free kick.90:00 +1:18
Cillian Sheridan takes a shot. Darren Randolph makes a save.88:45
Francisco Sandaza gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Tim Clancy. Darren Randolph restarts play with the free kick.87:38
Unfair challenge on Nicky Law by Jody Morris results in a free kick. Free kick taken by Tim Clancy.84:43
David McCracken gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Henrik Ojamaa. Free kick taken by Tim Clancy.83:28
Peter Enckelman takes the indirect free kick.83:28 Substitution
Substitution Chris Humphrey on for Jamie Murphy.83:28
Henrik Ojamaa is caught offside.82:09
David MacKay takes a shot. Keith Lasley gets a block in.81:12
Free kick awarded for a foul by Keith Lasley on Murray Davidson. Free kick taken by Jody Morris.80:24 Goal scored
Goal! - Francisco Sandaza - Motherwell 3 - 2 St J'stone Francisco Sandaza scores a placed penalty. Motherwell 3-2 St Johnstone.79:37
Unfair challenge on Murray Davidson by Keith Lasley results in a Penalty.76:52
Jack Compton takes the outswinging corner, David McCracken takes a shot. Blocked by Shaun Hutchinson. Corner from the left by-line taken by Jack Compton, Murray Davidson takes a shot. Blocked by Tom Hateley. Murray Davidson produces a right-footed shot from inside the area that clears the crossbar.76:52 Substitution
Substitution Liam Craig goes off and Cillian Sheridan comes on.74:15 Goal scored
Goal! - Keith Lasley - Motherwell 3 - 1 St J'stone Keith Lasley fires in a goal from outside the area to the top right corner of the goal. Motherwell 3-1 St Johnstone.71:07
Shot by Liam Craig. Blocked by Stevie Hammell. Corner taken left-footed by Jack Compton from the right by-line to the near post, Tim Clancy makes a clearance. Corner taken by Jack Compton from the right by-line to the near post, Keith Lasley manages to make a clearance.70:33
Corner taken by Jack Compton, Tim Clancy manages to make a clearance.
Omar Daley challenges Steven Anderson unfairly and gives away a free kick. Jody Morris takes the direct free kick.68:54
Effort on goal by Tom Hateley from inside the area goes harmlessly over the bar.67:51 Substitution
Substitution Jack Compton is brought on as a substitute for Marcus Haber.67:12
Francisco Sandaza takes a shot. Save by Darren Randolph.66:19
Darren Randolph takes the free kick.66:19 Booking
Booking Murray Davidson is shown a yellow card.66:03
Murray Davidson challenges Jamie Murphy unfairly and gives away a free kick.64:47
The assist for the goal came from Tom Hateley.64:47 Goal scored
Goal! - Henrik Ojamaa - Motherwell 2 - 1 St J'stone Henrik Ojamaa finds the back of the net with a goal from the edge of the area to the bottom left corner of the goal. Motherwell 2-1 St Johnstone.63:15
Jamie Murphy gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on David MacKay. Liam Craig crosses the ball in from the free kick.62:19
Free kick awarded for a foul by Jamie Murphy on Jody Morris. Direct free kick taken by Murray Davidson.61:33
Foul by Marcus Haber on Stevie Hammell, free kick awarded. Stevie Hammell restarts play with the free kick.58:40
Lee Croft is penalised for a handball. Shaun Hutchinson takes the free kick.57:55
Omar Daley is caught offside. Indirect free kick taken by Peter Enckelman.57:17
Francisco Sandaza takes a shot. Save by Darren Randolph.56:04
Murray Davidson takes a shot. Save made by Darren Randolph. Corner taken short by Liam Craig.55:11
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on David McCracken by Henrik Ojamaa. David McCracken takes the free kick.50:03
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Henrik Ojamaa by David McCracken. Stevie Hammell restarts play with the free kick.47:28
Lee Croft fouled by Henrik Ojamaa, the ref awards a free kick. Peter Enckelman takes the direct free kick.46:37
Liam Craig takes a shot. Darren Randolph makes a save.45:01
The referee starts the second half.45:00 +1:09 Half time
Half Time It is the end of the first-half.44:21
Assist by Lee Croft.44:21 Goal scored
Goal! - Jody Morris - Motherwell 1 - 1 St J'stone Jody Morris fires in a goal from just inside the penalty area to the top right corner of the goal. Motherwell 1-1 St Johnstone.41:43
Jody Morris gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Omar Daley. Stevie Hammell restarts play with the free kick.39:23
Murray Davidson gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Steve Jennings. Darren Randolph takes the direct free kick.37:30
Darren Randolph takes the direct free kick.37:30 Booking
Booking The referee cautions Francisco Sandaza for unsporting behaviour.37:06
Lee Croft takes a shot. Save by Darren Randolph. Tim Clancy fouled by Francisco Sandaza, the ref awards a free kick.35:30
Liam Craig produces a strike on goal direct from the free kick.35:30 Booking
Booking Tim Clancy is given a yellow card.34:40
Tim Clancy challenges Francisco Sandaza unfairly and gives away a free kick.32:02
David MacKay produces a cross, Liam Craig takes a shot. Save made by Darren Randolph.31:15
The referee blows for offside against Omar Daley. Free kick taken by Peter Enckelman.28:47
The referee blows for offside against Francisco Sandaza. Free kick taken by Darren Randolph.26:13
Steve Jennings has shot on goal from just outside the box which goes wide of the right-hand upright.25:44
Steve Jennings takes a shot. Blocked by Steven Anderson. Tom Hateley decides to take a short corner.24:58
Foul by Marcus Haber on Tim Clancy, free kick awarded. Free kick taken by Stevie Hammell.24:32
Shot from just outside the area by Omar Daley goes over the bar.23:39
Shot by Stevie Hammell.22:52 Booking
Booking Steven Anderson is shown a yellow card.22:41
Unfair challenge on Henrik Ojamaa by Steven Anderson results in a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Stevie Hammell.21:28
Nicky Law provided the assist for the goal.21:28 Goal scored
Goal! - Henrik Ojamaa - Motherwell 1 - 0 St J'stone Henrik Ojamaa finds the back of the net with a goal from inside the penalty box to the bottom left corner of the goal. Motherwell 1-0 St Johnstone.20:59
Free kick awarded for a foul by Francisco Sandaza on Omar Daley. Keith Lasley restarts play with the free kick.17:40
Foul by Shaun Hutchinson on Francisco Sandaza, free kick awarded. Shot on goal comes in from Francisco Sandaza from the free kick, save made by Darren Randolph.16:45
Inswinging corner taken by Tom Hateley, save by Peter Enckelman.14:29
Corner taken by Tom Hateley, Steven Anderson makes a clearance.12:31
David MacKay sends in a cross, Marcus Haber produces a header from inside the area that goes over the bar.11:57
Omar Daley is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Indirect free kick taken by Steven Anderson.10:45
Omar Daley takes a shot. Save by Peter Enckelman.9:41
Jody Morris has an effort at goal from just outside the box which goes wide of the right-hand upright.8:54
The referee blows for offside against Marcus Haber. Tom Hateley restarts play with the free kick.7:30
Omar Daley fouled by Lee Croft, the ref awards a free kick. Direct strike on goal from the free kick comes in from Tom Hateley, Murray Davidson gets a block in.4:51
David MacKay challenges Omar Daley unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick crossed by Tom Hateley, Marcus Haber makes a clearance.2:38
Unfair challenge on Tim Clancy by Marcus Haber results in a free kick. Stevie Hammell restarts play with the free kick.1:07
Jamie Murphy has shot on goal from a long way out that goes wide left.0:00
The referee gets the game started.
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