Kilmarnock boss Allan Johnston bemoans 'poor' defending

By Keir MurrayBBC Sport Scotland at Rugby Park

Kilmarnock's erratic defending gave manager Allan Johnston greatest cause for concern after they conceded their sixth and seventh goals in three games in their .

"I don't think our performance merited a 2-0 defeat," said Johnston following the match at Rugby Park.

"We created a few good chances but teams don't need to work hard to score against us.

"That has been our problem since we came in. That's the frustrating part."

Johnston praised the scorer of Motherwell's opening goal, John Sutton, for his battling display, but was far from complimentary about his own defenders, who failed to stop Henri Anier bursting in to the box to add the second.

"Sutton caused problems for us in both halves with his strength," said Johnston, whose side are second bottom of the Premiership.

"There were loads of mistakes for their first goal. It came from our corner.

"They had one striker up the park and we had two back and he managed to hold the ball in.

"Then the ball got played across the face of goal and came back in again and Sutton was still standing himself and we had three or four players round about him.

"And for the second goal we just got bullied. It was very poor defending."

Kilmarnock had their chances, especially through Kris Boyd. The striker was guilty of seeking the perfect position from which to shoot after being set up by Chris Johnston in the first half, and ended up being dispossessed.

And Boyd, now back in the Scotland set-up, headed over Gunnar Nielsen's bar from six yards following Michael Gardyne's inch-perfect cross from the right in the second period.

"He wasn't far away," said his manager.

"He is always going to score goals. The good thing is he was in the right place."

Sammy Clingan went close with a free-kick and had several shots at goal from outside the box without success in a decent performance in midfield.

"On the positives from the game, I thought young Craig Slater was brilliant in the middle of the park, and young Chris Johnston was really direct and he looked really promising," asserted Johnston.

"The fans weren't happy at the end and rightly so, because we should be higher up the table, but for the whole game they were right behind the players."