Scottish Premiership
MotherwellMotherwell2Ross CountyRoss County1

Motherwell 2-1 Ross County

By Paul MitchellBBC Scotland at Fir Park
James McFadden opens the scoring at Fir Park

Motherwell survived a late onslaught from Ross County to remain hot on the heels of Aberdeen in the race for second place in the Premiership.

James McFadden followed up a powerful strike from Iain Vigurs to knock the Steelmen in front on 48 minutes.

And the home side doubled their lead in similar fashion when John Sutton was first to the loose ball as Mark Brown kept out Craig Moore's swerving shot.

A volley from Yann Songo'o ensured a tense finish but 'Well held on.

With the league's top six all winning this weekend, Stuart McCall's side remain level on points with Aberdeen, although they have played one more game than their rivals.

It was a sixth win in their last seven league matches at Fir Park but it was a nervous finish for the home fans as Richie Brittain hit the post and Songo'o went close to a second goal.

With both starting line-ups unchanged, Motherwell enjoyed the larger share of early possession, with the movement of McFadden and Sutton troubling the visitors.

However, the first good opening fell to County as defender Stephen McManus misjudged Brown's long kick-out and glanced the ball towards his own goal. The alert Jordan Slew ran on and cracked a shot with power but it flew the wrong side of the post.

Motherwell responded with two chances in two minutes. Shaun Hutchinson failed to get a full connection on Lionel Ainsworth's cross and sent his header wide while Brown had to be at his best to stretch out and claw the ball away from McFadden's deft flick.

The first half closed with Motherwell in the ascendancy and Lasley shot wide following good work from Ainsworth.

The home side took only three minutes of the second half to break the stalemate as Sutton fed the ball back to Vigurs to strike from 25 yards.

The former County midfielder's stinging shot was saved by Brown diving across to his left but the keeper could do nothing as McFadden pounced quickly to find the net.

The lead was extended on the hour as Moore, on for McFadden, conjured up a swerving effort that Brown could only push away and Sutton was on hand to apply the finish - although he lifted the ball higher into the net than he may have intended.

It has been a fixture that Sutton has flourished in this season - netting in all three games, scoring five goals in the process.

Motherwell looked comfortable but County stuck to their task and Brittain almost pulled a goal back after 78 minutes when he sent a shot across Gunnar Neilson, beating the goalkeeper, but striking the foot of the post.

The Staggies did get on the scoresheet with nine minutes to play when Songo'o knocked in a Graham Carey corner for his third goal of the season, sparking a frantic push for an equaliser from the visitors.

And it was Songo'o who came closest when he skilfully brought down a ball into the penalty box and hit a shot on the turn but it was just off target.



Formation 4-4-2

  • 12Nielsen
  • 2Reid
  • 3Hammell
  • 18Carswell
  • 5Hutchinson
  • 6McManusBooked at 76mins
  • 25AinsworthSubstituted forFrancis-Angolat 76'minutes
  • 14Lasley
  • 9Sutton
  • 7McFaddenSubstituted forMooreat 56'minutesBooked at 63mins
  • 11Vigurs


  • 17Francis-Angol
  • 21Stewart
  • 22Moore
  • 23Murray
  • 24Anier
  • 26Leitch
  • 30Thomas

Ross County

Formation 4-4-2

  • 1Brown
  • 2CikosSubstituted forSaundersat 78'minutes
  • 26Oikonomou
  • 8Brittain
  • 5Boyd
  • 28Songo'o
  • 7KissSubstituted forCareyat 50'minutes
  • 12Tidser
  • 27Arquin
  • 11De LeeuwBooked at 67minsSubstituted forGlenat 71'minutes
  • 25Slew


  • 3Gordon
  • 10Quinn
  • 15Glen
  • 21McLean
  • 22Saunders
  • 23Carey
  • 42McCarthy
Iain Brines

Match Stats

Home TeamMotherwellAway TeamRoss County
Shots on Target

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Motherwell 2, Ross County 1.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Motherwell 2, Ross County 1.

  3. Post update

    Corner, Motherwell. Conceded by Scott Boyd.

  4. Goal!

    Goal! Motherwell 2, Ross County 1. Yann Songo'o (Ross County) right footed shot from very close range to the top right corner. Assisted by Graham Carey.

  5. Post update

    Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Zaine Francis-Angol.

  6. Post update

    Corner, Motherwell. Conceded by Evangelos Oikonomou.

  7. Substitution

    Substitution, Ross County. Steven Saunders replaces Erik Cikos.

  8. Post update

    Richard Brittain (Ross County) hits the left post with a right footed shot from the right side of the box.

  9. Substitution

    Substitution, Motherwell. Zaine Francis-Angol replaces Lionel Ainsworth.

  10. Booking

    Stephen McManus (Motherwell) is shown the yellow card.

  11. Post update

    Michael Tidser (Ross County) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  12. Post update

    Foul by Stephen McManus (Motherwell).

  13. Substitution

    Substitution, Ross County. Gary Glen replaces Melvin De Leeuw.

  14. Booking

    Melvin De Leeuw (Ross County) is shown the yellow card.

  15. Post update

    (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  16. Post update

    Melvin De Leeuw (Ross County).

  17. Post update

    Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Steven Hammell.

  18. Booking

    Craig Moore (Motherwell) is shown the yellow card.

  19. Post update

    Foul by Craig Moore (Motherwell).

  20. Post update

    Erik Cikos (Ross County) wins a free kick on the left wing.