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Last Updated: Saturday, 3 November 2007, 17:24 GMT
Motherwell 1-1 St Mirren
St Mirren's Gary Mason tussles with Motherwell's David Clarkson
St Mirren's Gary Mason tussles with Motherwell's David Clarkson
Motherwell and St Mirren shared the points in an exciting and closely fought match at Fir Park.

Chris Porter gave Motherwell the lead on the half-hour mark, when he latched on to a Phil O'Donnell cross and clipped it home from six yards.

But as half-time approached, Stewart Kean equalised with a header from close range after being set up by strike partner Billy Mehmet.

Both sides pushed for the winner but a draw seemed a fair result.

The match always looked like being a tight affair, with just three points separating the sides at kick-off.

Motherwell won by a single goal on the opening day of the season and both teams have impressed in recent weeks.

Motherwell had restored Porter to the starting eleven, with Marc Fitzpatrick dropping out from the side which just lost to Rangers in the CIS Insurance Cup quarter-final during the week.

Chris Porter celebrates scoring the opener for Motherwell
Chris Porter celebrates scoring the opener for Motherwell

Gus MacPherson's St Mirren side were seeking their third SPL win on the trot and made no changes to the side which defeated Hibernian last week.

The game started at a brisk pace. Ross McCormack had a goalbound shot blocked by David van Zanten in seven minutes, then a David Clarkson header and shot from full-back Paul Quinn let St Mirren know they were in for a challenging afternoon.

The breakthrough for the home side came in the 29th minute.

Ross McCormack took a quick throw-in to seize on a lapse in concentration by St Mirren. Phil O'Donnell picked up the ball, drove down the left and his cross was met by Porter at the near post to flick it beyond Chris Smith.

On the stroke of half-time, St Mirren equalised to sour the half-time refreshments for the Well fans. An Alex Burke corner to the back post found on-form Billy Mehmet, who directed the ball to strike partner Stewart Kean for him to head home from six yards.

In the second half it was St Mirren who edged the play, as Motherwell struggled to maintain the tempo they had dictated in the first period.

Mark McGhee introduced Marc Fitzpatrick for Keith Lasley with 70 minutes on the clock to try to take the game to St Mirren with a 4-3-3 formation.

And in 72 minutes Motherwell nearly restored their lead when David Clarkson directed a powerful header from 12 yards out. Buddies keeper Smith was at full stretch to tip the ball round the post.

Neither side was prepared to settle for a draw. In a swift counter-attack Mark Corcoran, a second half substitute for Alex Burke, set up Billy Mehmet but the Saints striker rattled the junction of the post and crossbar.

Just 30 seconds later Ross McCormack shot just over the bar as St Mirren were cursing their luck at the opposite end of the pitch.


Motherwell: Graeme Smith, Quinn, Craigan, Reynolds, Paterson, McGarry, Lasley (Fitzpatrick 70), O'Donnell, Clarkson (Darren Smith 89), Porter, McCormack.

Subs Not Used: Meldrum, Brian McLean, Mensing, Grabban, Kinniburgh.

Booked: Porter, Quinn.

Goals: Porter 29.

St Mirren: Smith, van Zanten, Haining, Millen, Miranda, Brady (Birchall 59), Mason, Murray, Burke (Corcoran 73), Mehmet, Kean.

Subs Not Used: Howard, Potter, McCay, Barron, McGinn.

Booked: Burke, Murray.

Goals: Kean 45.

Attendance: 5,123

Referee: Mike McCurry



SEE ALSO
McGhee searches for killer touch
03 Nov 07 |  Motherwell
Millen satisfied with Well draw
03 Nov 07 |  St Mirren


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