Motherwell defeated 2-0 to champs Celtic at Parkhead

Moussa Dembele scored a penalty for Celtic against Motherwell (Pic by Rob Casey)
Moussa Dembele scored a penalty for Celtic against Motherwell (Pic by Rob Casey)

Motherwell went down to a 2-0 defeat at Celtic Park in Saturday’s Scottish Premiership clash.

A first half penalty by Moussa Dembele and a further strike by James Forrest had the Steelmen 2-0 down at the interval but no further damage was done on the away goal in the second half.

There was an early blow for Motherwell when Stephen McManus limped off with a hamstring problem and was replaced by recent signing Zak Jules.

Celtic bossed possession throughout the first quarter but didn’t threaten the Motherwell goal until 23 minutes when James Forrest produced a fine run and shot parried by Motherwell keeper Craig Samson. The rebound was sent just wide by Liam Henderson.

But the runaway league leaders did go in front from the penalty spot on 32 minutes when Dembele shot home from 12 yards after a foul on Scott Sinclair by Zak Jules.

But the Steelmen gained a foothold and Louis Moult headed just off target at the back post after a Joe Chalmers cross from the right.

And the away side went close again when stephen Pearson’s shot was comfortably saved by Craig Gordon.

But the Hoops soon established a two-goal cushion when Dembele’s pass to Forrest set the winger up to shoot past Samson and into the far corner.

A fantastic run by Sinclair on 56 minutes ended with a shot just wide, before Motherwell went to the other end and Keith Lasley set up Craig Clay who sent a right footed effort over the top.

The champions almost went three up when Sinclair’s half volley went just over after Forrest’s centre.

Centre half Jules then produced a brilliant run forward before winning Motherwell a corner and on this evidence the Reading loanee and Scotland under-21 international looks an exciting prospect.

Play raged to the other end where Celtic skipper Scott Brown sent a rasping drive just over the bar.

Motherwell then created another great chance to score when Jack McMillan’s 82 minute corner from the left was knocked down by Bowman to Pearson, whose effort went just over.

The rest of the 90 minutes petered out as Motherwell crashed to a third straight defeat.

But at least the Steelmen have restored face after Wednesday night’s disastrous 7-2 hammering against Aberdeen in a one sided affair at Pittodrie.