Dramatic second half as Motherwell secure vital 3-1 success at Dundee

Danny Johnson celebrates putting Motherwell ahead at Dens Park (Pic by Ian McFadyen)
Danny Johnson celebrates putting Motherwell ahead at Dens Park (Pic by Ian McFadyen)

Motherwell moved up the Scottish Premiership table with their first league victory of the season at Dens Park on Saturday, writes Craig Goldthorp.

Second half goals by Danny Johnson, Gael Bigirimana and Allan Campbell won the day for the Steelmen against a Dundee side who remain pointless at the foot of the table.
Motherwell started the livelier team and almost went ahead on three minutes when a Bigirimana corner from the right was met by a powerful Andy Rose header but Jack Hamilton saved and the rebound was just beyond Johnson.
Referee Gavin Duncan then waved away penalty appeals for a challenge on Johnson before Main shot over as the Steelmen maintained their early supremacy.
Bigirimana was booked for a lunging foul on Jesse Curran and the little Burundian then set up Main for a left footed shot off target.
Johnson sent a speculative left footer from distance wide, before Main came agonisingly close on 21 minutes as his header from a Rose centre was deflected just off target.
Another Bigi corner was soon flicked on at the near post by Carl McHugh but Hamilton turned the ball behind.
The hosts nearly gifted a 27th minute opener to Well when Genseric Kusunga's pass put fellow defender Josh Meekings under pressure and Main stole the ball before shooting just wide.
Motherwell were enjoying almost total dominance but Dundee then had a good spell, forcing corners with new signing Kenny Miller prominent.
That was it for a goalless first half and Motherwell manager Stephen Robinson made an early switch after the break when winger Elliott Frear replaced Chris Cadden.
And Frear sent a pass inside to Bigirimana and the Burundian's ferocious effort from outside the box hit the side netting.
But Frear was involved in a successful move on 57 minutes when his cross from the left was horribly missed by Kusunga and Johnson gleefully blasted the ball into the net from close range with his left foot.
And the Steelmen went further in front 12 minutes later when Bigirimana swept home a free-kick from just outside the box.
Well's stars celebrated gleefully but their lead was reduced to just one goal within three minutes as a Calvin Miller corner was headed in by Benjamin Kallman who found space in the penalty area.
Dundee now had their tails up and Calvin Miller crossed for Paul McGowan whose shot from close range was brilliantly stopped by Carson.
Within a minute the Dee had another great chance when another Calvin Miller centre was headed weakly at Carson by Kallman.
The home team were in the ascendancy but Motherwell netted a killer third goal on 86 minutes when Bigirimana's short free-kick to Conor Sammon saw the sub's shot half blocked to Campbell who shot home emphatically.
Dundee came close to pulling one back late on when Kenny Miller's knockdown to Kusunga saw the big centre back's effort deflected for a corner.
Motherwell: Carson, Tait, McHugh, Aldred, Hartley, Cadden (Frear 53), Campbell, Main, Rose, Bigirimana, Johnson (Sammon 69).
Referee: Gavin Duncan
Crowd: 5137

Gael Bigirimana, Andy Rose and Richard Tait celebrate Bigi's free-kick goal (Pic by Ian McFadyen)

Gael Bigirimana, Andy Rose and Richard Tait celebrate Bigi's free-kick goal (Pic by Ian McFadyen)

Allan Campbell shoots home Motherwell's third (Pic by Ian McFadyen)

Allan Campbell shoots home Motherwell's third (Pic by Ian McFadyen)

Motherwell celebrated a 3-1 win at Dens Park on Saturday

Motherwell celebrated a 3-1 win at Dens Park on Saturday