Motherwell 3-1 Dunfermline Athletic

By Clive LindsayBBC Scotland

Motherwell climbed back into third in the Scottish Premier League as Henrik Ojamaa inspired their 10 men to victory over disappointing Dunfermline.

Stephen Craigan was sent off for violent conduct after 18 minutes.

But recent signing Ojamaa's low drive after 29 minutes and Nicky Law's 52nd-minute piledriver put Well in control.

Andy Kirk's volley 10 minutes later gave the Pars some hope, but Chris Humphrey slid in Well's third nine minutes from time.

Motherwell's first home league win since September puts them three points above Hearts and St Johnstone in the table.

And it brought back down to earth a Dunfermline side who had been hoping for their first back-to-back wins of the season to lift them two points above Hibernian at the foot of the table.

Stephen Craigan is sent off
Craigan was sent off after 18 minutes against Dunfermline

Pars boss Jim McIntyre had not surprisingly named an unchanged side having ended a run of 10 games without a victory by surprising Kilmarnock 3-0 at Rugby Park on Saturday.

Estonia striker Ojamaa was handed his first start for Motherwell after starring as a substitute and setting up their weekend equaliser against Dundee United, with Omar Daley the man to drop out.

And the recent signing was unlucky to be denied the opener when Steve Jennings sent him clear behind the Pars defence.

However, with striker Michael Higdon in an offside position, the flag went up to provide a lucky escape for the visitors.

With the two sides coming into the game on the back of promising results, it was surprising that it took 15 minutes to threaten either goal, but it sparked the game into life.

Dunfermline immediately had claims for a penalty rejected when Shaun Hutchinson's challenge sent Joe Cardle flying.

Craigan was dismissed after an angry off-the-ball reaction following an 18th-minute clash with Andrew Barrowman, the Pars striker himself being booked.

As Motherwell boss Stuart McCall sacrificed forward Jamie Murphy to strengthen his defence with Tim Clancy, Dunfermline almost immediately took advantage following a goalmouth scramble that was eventually cleared.

The Pars lost Barrowman to injury after 26 minutes, with Kirk his replacement, and suffered another blow two minutes later.

Ojamaa picked up the ball in midfield, shrugged off a couple of challenges and fired a low drive that bounced in front of Turner before clearing the Scotland squad goalkeeper's outstretched arms and nestling in the far corner of the net.

Andy Dowie had more claims for a penalty rejected when he was challenged by Darren Randolph during a series of corners and the goalkeeper saved on the rebound from Liam Buchanan, who also had a header blocked in front of goal.

The Pars ought to have been the ones to come out fired up after the break, but instead it was Well who deservedly went further in front after 52 minutes.

Ojamaa shielded the ball 20 yards from goal before rolling the ball into the path of Law and the English midfielder was given plenty of time to pick his spot and fire high past Turner.

The Pars were looking down and out until Paddy Boyle's low, curling cross was volleyed home by Kirk after 62 minutes.

Kirk fired wide from a similar position before Humphrey combined with fellow substitute Bob McHugh to pounce on some slack defending and side-foot home the clincher.

Motherwell manager Stuart McCall: "We talked before the game about how big an incentive Dunfermline had to win the game after their great result on Saturday, but we had a massive incentive too.

"We were constantly reminded of how long it had been since we last won at home, but we scored three good goals and the players kept their energy levels up very well - it's a happy but tired dressing-room.

"I haven't spoken to Stephen or seen the decision again. My full focus at half-time was on making sure the players on the park were ready to go back out there.

"I had a word with the referee as he came off the park. He said it wasn't a head-butt but he made the gesture of a head-butt. I will have to wait until I see it."

Dunfermline Athletic manager Jim McIntyre: "There's a reason that we are bottom of the league and that is our consistency levels.

"When Motherwell went down to 10 men, that was the perfect chance to go and grab the game by the scruff of the neck.

"But we didn't pass the ball well or play with enough tempo to force Motherwell into making mistakes.

"After you come off a result like the one we had on Saturday, and with the early sending-off, you hope that you can build on that, but we were unable to do that."

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