Scottish Premiership
MotherwellMotherwell2HeartsHeart of Midlothian2

Motherwell 2-2 Heart of Midlothian

By Brian McLauchlinBBC Scotland at Fir Park
Louis Moult celebrates after scoring for Motherwell
Louis Moult bagged an early opener for Motherwell

Hearts closed the gap at the top of the Premiership on Celtic to five points after a thrilling draw with Motherwell at Fir Park.

Louis Moult and Marvin Johnson twice had the home side in front, with goals in either half in inclement conditions.

They were clawed back, though, by equalisers from Juanma and Osman Sow.

The draw ensures Motherwell move seven points clear of bottom-placed Dundee United, who lost away to Hamilton Academical on Saturday.

It was a stunning start by the home side who took the lead after just 90 seconds.

Hearts captain Blazej Augustyn was short with a back-pass and Moult was denied by goalkeeper Neil Alexander.

From the clearance the ball was crossed back into the box, and the Motherwell striker got the better of Alexander who spilled the ball under pressure for Moult to tap into the empty net.

Despite furious protests from Alexander and his defenders, referee Steven McLean allowed the goal to stand, showing Alexander a yellow card.

This stung the visitors into action and they equalised barely two minutes later.

Good quick feet by Sow allowed him time to slip the ball through to Hearts' top scorer Juanma who clipped the ball over the advancing Connor Ripley.

Sow then had a glorious chance to put Hearts in front, seizing upon a short back-pass by Kieran Kennedy but firing his effort straight at Ripley.

Despite the poor weather the game was swinging from end to end as both teams fought tenaciously to take the lead.

Osman Sow scores for Hearts
Osman Sow's fantastic strike levelled for Hearts in the second half

A Stephen Pearson effort from 12 yards was blocked by Augustyn while Igor Rossi and Callum Paterson both came close with headers for the Tynecastle side.

Before the break there was a huge let-off for Hearts when Johnson used his electric pace to set up Moult just a yard out.

His effort was saved by Alexander and the ball crept along the line before the danger was cleared.

Into the second half and Scott McDonald twice came close to putting Motherwell in front before the hosts eventually regained control.

Johnson collected a loose ball just inside the Hearts half and drove straight towards goal.

Rossi and Jordan McGhee both attempted to block his path to goal but the winger twisted and turned before rifling home from 12 yards.

The lead though, once again, was short-lived as the visitors drew level for a second time.

Sow collected a loose ball 30 yards out and decided to have a pop at goal, powering a spectacular, dipping effort over the outstretched arms of Ripley.

Blustery winds and at times heavy rain meant that silky soccer was not on the menu but both teams continued to stride forward looking for a winner.

Hearts substitute Prince Buaben had an effort blocked and from the rebound Sam Nicholson fired over the bar from 10 yards.

Moult and Lionel Ainsworth also tried to break down Hearts' defence late on without success leaving both teams with a point apiece.

Line-ups

Motherwell

  • 1Ripley
  • 18Law
  • 16Kennedy
  • 6McManus
  • 3HammellBooked at 29mins
  • 4GrimshawBooked at 80mins
  • 14Lasley
  • 8PearsonBooked at 90mins
  • 11JohnsonSubstituted forAinsworthat 68'minutes
  • 77McDonaldSubstituted forRobinsonat 85'minutes
  • 20Moult

Substitutes

  • 5Laing
  • 7Ainsworth
  • 12Samson
  • 17Robinson
  • 19Clarkson
  • 23Thomas
  • 25Taylor

Hearts

  • 1AlexanderBooked at 3mins
  • 2Paterson
  • 4Augustyn
  • 18RossiBooked at 66mins
  • 17OshaniwaSubstituted forMcGheeat 51'minutes
  • 16Sutchuin-Djoum
  • 14Pallardo GonzalezBooked at 23mins
  • 19Delgado Lloria
  • 23SwansonSubstituted forBuabenat 68'minutes
  • 11Nicholson
  • 10Sow

Substitutes

  • 6Gomis
  • 8Buaben
  • 13Hamilton
  • 20Reilly
  • 22McGhee
  • 27Buchanan
  • 44Zanatta
Referee:
Steven McLean
Attendance:
5,141

Match Stats

Home TeamMotherwellAway TeamHearts
Possession
Home54%
Away46%
Shots
Home8
Away12
Shots on Target
Home6
Away5
Corners
Home2
Away5
Fouls
Home15
Away14

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Motherwell 2, Heart of Midlothian 2.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Motherwell 2, Heart of Midlothian 2.

  3. Post update

    Foul by Stephen Pearson (Motherwell).

  4. Post update

    Osman Sow (Heart of Midlothian) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  5. Booking

    Stephen Pearson (Motherwell) is shown the yellow card.

  6. Post update

    Foul by Blazej Augustyn (Heart of Midlothian).

  7. Post update

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

  8. Post update

    Attempt missed. Juanma (Heart of Midlothian) header from the centre of the box misses to the left.

  9. Post update

    Corner, Heart of Midlothian. Conceded by Lionel Ainsworth.

  10. Post update

    Corner, Heart of Midlothian. Conceded by Steven Hammell.

  11. Substitution

    Substitution, Motherwell. Theo Robinson replaces Scott McDonald.

  12. Post update

    Attempt missed. Callum Paterson (Heart of Midlothian) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left.

  13. Post update

    Corner, Heart of Midlothian. Conceded by Kieran Kennedy.

  14. Post update

    Attempt missed. Sam Nicholson (Heart of Midlothian) right footed shot from the right side of the box is just a bit too high.

  15. Post update

    Attempt saved. Osman Sow (Heart of Midlothian) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

  16. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Juanma (Heart of Midlothian) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.

  17. Post update

    Attempt missed. Sam Nicholson (Heart of Midlothian) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the right.

  18. Booking

    Liam Grimshaw (Motherwell) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  19. Post update

    Juanma (Heart of Midlothian) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  20. Post update

    Foul by Liam Grimshaw (Motherwell).

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