A crazy game at Firhill on Saturday saw Motherwell totally outplayed for the first half yet end up being frustrated at drawing 1-1 after a ‘goal’ was wrongly disallowed for offside.
Partick Thistle completely dominated the opening 45 minutes, with Motherwell – looking for their first Maryhill win in three years – struggling into the wind and rain.
’Well defender Richard Tait’s short backpass to keeper Craig Samson, which Samson just managed to clear, was to be preceded later in the half by a similar incident with disastrous consequences for Stevie Hammell; more of that later.
Thistle enjoyed plenty of the ball early on, with Steelman Stephen McManus forced to make a timely block from Ade Azeez before Steven Lawless’s fine run was eventually halted by the visitors.
Yet ironically it was Motherwell who had the best chance of the opening half hour when Ryan Bowman was put clean through on keeper Ryan Scully who comfortably stopped his lobbed effort before blocking the rebound.
But Thistle scored on 31 minutes when Hammell’s suicidal pass across his own penalty area was pounced upon by Chris Erskine who shot past Samson.
The experienced left back would have felt rotten at that but he put the disappointment behind him to have a solid second half. Azeez then wasted a chance to put ’Well two down when he shot wide from Erskine’s pass before team-mate David Amoo had a shot blocked low by Samson.
Scott McDonald swivelled and shot over at the other end after Keith Lasley’s free-kick, before the luckless Azeez again shot wide for Thistle.
Then came the major moment of controversy, when McDonald knocked the ball home after Lasley’s free-kick had been headed across goal to him by Heneghan.
Despite TV replays later showing the goal should have stood, the nearside linesman raised his flag and disallowed it.
Azeez was then thwarted by Samson rushing out, before Liam Lindsay headed straight at Samson following a free-kick.
A rasping 25-yard shot by Thistle’s Ryan Edwards hit the post before Scully spilled a cross at the other end and McManus shot wide.
Samson saved from Amoo and ’Well then went up the other end to score when McDonald headed in a Tait cross and celebrated in front of the Thistle fans.
The Steelmen had two late chances to win it, but Scully saved Bowman’s header and Cadden’s shot.