Motherwell 3-2 St Johnstone

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.

Interview - Motherwell manager Stuart McCall

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.

Henrik Ojamaa
Ojamaa netted twice to give Motherwell a deserved win against St Johnstone

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.

Interview - St Johnstone manager Steve Lomas

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.

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