Match ends, Motherwell 0, Kilmarnock 0.
Motherwell 0-0 Kilmarnock
Motherwell were left to rue missed chances as they were held to a goalless draw at home to Kilmarnock.
Ross MacLean had the best opportunity of the first half, seeing his shot saved by Killie goalkeeper Jamie MacDonald when one on one.
Louis Moult had a similar chance in the second half, but again could not find a way past MacDonald.
Well's Scott McDonald fired wide, while Killie's best chance came through a Souleymane Coulibaly overhead kick.
Killie without killer touch
Kilmarnock opened impressively, just like they did at Aberdeen in midweek, with Jordan Jones creating the biggest threat on the left wing with his positive running.
Twice he provided Rory McKenzie with shooting opportunities with neat low crosses to pick him out. His first effort was blocked by Stephen McManus with Killie players claiming for a penalty suggesting it came off his arm.
The second was a left foot strike which was saved by Craig Samson.
The home captain Keith Lasley got lucky when he tried to clear from his own penalty spot. His clearance struck his Killie counterpart Stevie Smith as he tried to close him down and the ball flew inches wide of Samson's left hand post.
Motherwell then became a threat at the other end. Craig Clay, who spoke in midweek about his disappointment that he has yet to score for the Fir Park side, really should have opened his account from 10 yards but fluffed his shot wide of MacDonald's left hand post.
McLean also fired wide after playing a one-two with Louis Moult.
Needing a Faddy finish
With manager Mark McGhee watching from the directors box due to a two-match touchline ban, assistant James McFadden was in charge of proceedings in the home technical area. McFadden looked calm in the role but will have wished his players could have shown the composure he regularly displayed in front of goal.
McLean had only MacDonald to beat after latching onto a through pass from McDonald, but the Killie goalkeeper reacted quickly diving to his right to save superbly.
Lionel Ainsworth had the final and best chance of the half but he blasted wide from eight yards when it looked easier to score.
Hit and miss
The early part of the second half was bereft of chances until Moult seemed to get himself clear of the Killie defence, but just as 'Well's top scorer was preparing to release his shot a perfectly timed tackle from Scott Boyd denied him the opportunity.
Ivorian striker Coulibaly likes the spectacular and he tried a trademark overhead kick from the angle of the six yard box, but it ended high over the bar.
McDonald was next to miss-fire after being set up by Richard Tait. The full-back concluded a positive run by playing the ball into the path of the striker just inside the box, but the Australian's right foot effort flew wide of the post.
So we witnessed the first goalless encounter between these sides in five years and while the goalkeepers will be happy with their clean sheets will be the front men who will be asking questions of their finishing.
Motherwell manager Mark McGhee: "It wasn't a great performance but I think we edged it. We made four or five clear-cut chances and if you don't take one of them you're not going to win games.
"The fact we didn't manage to convert any of them, that's hugely disappointing. But we're not beaten and got a clean sheet so onwards and upwards.
"Any team that misses a couple of their best players is affected and today we were missing Chris Cadden and Stevie Hammell. Even up until an hour and a half before kick-off Scott McDonald and Louis Moult were both doubtful.
"We weren't the same team as started against Celtic last week so the missing players did effect the level of our performance but regardless of that the others who came in did okay. We still made chances and we should have won the game."
Kilmarnock manager Lee Clark: "Anytime you come away from home and get a clean sheet you're usually happy, but tinged with a little bit of disappointment in terms of I thought we started the game ever so well, similar to Tuesday against Aberdeen.
"We had opportunities but then as the game wore on Motherwell came into it and caused us one or two problems. They have a lively front two of Moult and McDonald.
"I just felt at times the game was a little bit scrappy with two teams working really hard, battling and basically showing what the league's about this season in terms of not much between the teams out with the top three or four. The rest of us are quite even and it's all about if you cannot win these games then not losing them.
"Pleased that's another clean sheet especially coming off the back of conceding five on Tuesday. You go back to the basics and that's two Saturdays in row we've got clean sheets."
- 7AinsworthSubstituted forHastieat 74'minutes
- 14LasleyBooked at 71minsSubstituted forThomasat 74'minutes
- 27MacLeanSubstituted forLucasat 48'minutesBooked at 59mins
- 16BoydBooked at 51mins
- 5BoyleBooked at 88mins
- 8DickerBooked at 84mins
- 11JonesSubstituted forHawkshawat 86'minutes
- Steven McLean
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Motherwell 0, Kilmarnock 0.
Richard Tait (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Dean Hawkshaw (Kilmarnock).
Corner, Motherwell. Conceded by Nathan Tyson.
William Boyle (Kilmarnock) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Louis Moult (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by William Boyle (Kilmarnock).
Substitution, Kilmarnock. Dean Hawkshaw replaces Jordan Jones.
Attempt missed. Stephen McManus (Motherwell) left footed shot from the centre of the box is high and wide to the left.
Corner, Motherwell. Conceded by Scott Boyd.
Gary Dicker (Kilmarnock) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Jake Hastie (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Gary Dicker (Kilmarnock).
Lee Lucas (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Jordan Jones (Kilmarnock).
Attempt missed. Scott McDonald (Motherwell) left footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses the top left corner.
Foul by Louis Moult (Motherwell).
Scott Boyd (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Corner, Motherwell. Conceded by Steven Smith.
Corner, Kilmarnock. Conceded by Richard Tait.
Hand ball by Scott McDonald (Motherwell).
Substitution, Motherwell. Dom Thomas replaces Keith Lasley.
Substitution, Motherwell. Jake Hastie replaces Lionel Ainsworth.
Attempt saved. Souleymane Coulibaly (Kilmarnock) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the top left corner.
Attempt missed. Jordan Jones (Kilmarnock) left footed shot from very close range is too high.
Keith Lasley (Motherwell) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Foul by Keith Lasley (Motherwell).
Jordan Jones (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Attempt missed. Souleymane Coulibaly (Kilmarnock) left footed shot from the centre of the box is too high.
Corner, Kilmarnock. Conceded by Ben Heneghan.
Attempt saved. Scott McDonald (Motherwell) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.
Corner, Motherwell. Conceded by Scott Boyd.
Attempt blocked. Louis Moult (Motherwell) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.
Lionel Ainsworth (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Steven Smith (Kilmarnock).
Stephen McManus (Motherwell) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Souleymane Coulibaly (Kilmarnock).
Corner, Kilmarnock. Conceded by Keith Lasley.
Lee Lucas (Motherwell) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.