20072458
Sat 27 Feb 2021
SPFL Premiership
HT 0-1
Hibernian Hibernian FC
0
Motherwell Motherwell FC
2
Roberts (
25')
Cole (
46')
Match Report

It proved to be a disappointing afternoon for Hibernian as Motherwell secured their first win in Leith since 2013.

Goals either side of half-time from Jordan Roberts and Devante Cole had The Steelmen deservedly in front.

The Easter Road men rallied and put Motherwell under intense pressure for the final 30 minutes, carving out several good opportunities without converting any.

Josh Doig committed his future to Hibernian during the week when he signed a new long-term deal to keep him at Easter Road until 2025.

The 18-year-old Academy graduate was a surprise omission from today’s squad as he missed out through injury.

The ever-dependable Lewis Stevenson replaced him at full-back and the veteran was involved early on creating opportunities for Martin Boyle and Chris Cadden, however neither efforts were on target.

Those opportunities went against the run of play with Motherwell the better side throughout the first half.

The visitors should have opened the scoring in the 17th minute when a long ball forward saw Tony Watt get in behind Darren McGregor and, with only Ofir Marciano to beat, he fired into the side-netting. The former Celtic striker, perhaps unaware of just how much time he had on the ball, snatched at his shot.

Motherwell kept pressing and it took a stunning last-gasp block from McGregor to prevent Allan Campbell from at the very least testing Marciano.

A goal was coming, and it duly arrived when Watt slipped the ball in behind to Roberts, who held off Paul Hanlon before slipping his finish beyond Marciano to break the deadlock.

It was a deserved lead for a Motherwell side that were desperate to secure a win that would ease any relegation fears they may have.

They could have snatched a quick-fire second when Watt’s delivery from the left was met by the head of Campbell, however his effort was just wide.

Campbell and Robbie Crawford both tried their luck from distance, with the former shooting straight at Marciano while the latter dragged his shot wide of goal.

Hibs, toiling to break down a well-organised opponent, had late opportunities with Cadden’s shot deflecting wide and Boyle forcing a save from Liam Kelly.

from @HibernianFC

The second period was only seconds old when Motherwell increased their advantage. From a Motherwell throw-in Watt and Roberts combined to set up Cole, who calmly slotted the ball away from close range.

Jack Ross was furious with his side and the Hibs coach’s reaction was to immediately make a triple substitution with Alex Gogic, Ryan Porteous and Kevin Nisbet on for Lewis Stevenson, Darren McGregor and Jamie Murphy.

The changes worked as Hibs began to dominate and Motherwell dropped deeper and deeper.

Joe Newell had a good opportunity to reduce arrears when the ball dropped to him inside the Motherwell box, however his rising effort hit the side-netting.

Christian Doidge had a terrific chance to score when Jackson Irvine’s threaded ball put him through on goal. The Welshman opted to take his shot early and was denied by Kelly.

With Hibs enjoying their best spell of the match Motherwell’s response was to withdraw striker Watt and replace him with defender Declan Gallagher.

The pressure increased with Kevin Nisbet forcing Kelly into a save from a free-kick before the goalkeeper denied Doidge after a mistake from Gallagher gifted the attacker an opportunity.

In time added on substitute Scott Allan weaved his way into the Motherwell box and cut the ball back to Nisbet, who blasted his shot high over the crossbar.

A disappointing afternoon at home from Hibernian. who missed the opportunity to strengthen their grip on third place in the Scottish Premiership.

Report: Richard Payne.