Sub ref hands the points to Buddies

Henri Anier opened the scoring
Henri Anier opened the scoring

Motherwell threw away a two-goal lead as they lost at St Mirren Park, but the result proved to be far from without controversy.

Shaun Hutchinson was revealed to the the unnamed injury doubt joining ’Well’s once again growing queue for the treatment room.

Lionel Ainsworth returned to the side after being rested for the trip to Inverness and he had a hand in the opener.

Stevie Hammell played a long ball forward, the St Mirren defence pushed out trying to catch Henri Anier offside, but Ainsworth ran on from deep and squared for ANIER to sweep into the empty net.

On 27 minutes it was 2-0 with the same set-up combining as Hammell crossed from the left, Ainsworth volleyed back across goal and JOHN SUTTON stooped to head in his 20th goal of the season.

Although ’Well were two goals to the good the home side had plenty of chances, particularly from corners as the away side failed to deal with Kenny McLean’s deliveries time and again.

Darren McGregor and Jim Goodwin missed the pick of the chances before finally four minutes from the break they struck as McLean’s corner was headed down by McGregor at the back post and STEPHEN THOMPSON struck on the half volley.

At half-time Iain Brines replaced Euan Norris as referee and ’Well were left to rue this turn of events.

However, before he took centre stage the Buddies did try to push for an equaliser of their own volition, with Gunnar Nielsen twice pulling off good saves to deny Thompson.

At the other end a powerful Ainsworth shot was tipped wide by Christopher Dilo and then Sutton sent substitute Craig Moore clear, but the youngster dragged his shot wide.

Four minutes from time the Buddies got a penalty as a Thompson header hit Stephen McManus in the face and Brines inexplicably pointed to the spot.

McLEAN stepped up and tucked the penalty past Nielsen.

Things got even worse a minute later as Craig Reid tried to cut out a Gary Teale cutback, but only served to present the ball to THOMPSON who made no mistake for the winner.

St Mirren: Dilo, McLean, McAusland, Newton (Magennis 54), Kelly, Naismith, McGregor, McGinn, Thompson, Goodwin (Teale 73), McGowan (Wylde 21). Subs not used: Mathers, Van Zanten, Djemba-Djemba, Campbell.

Motherwell: Nielsen, Reid, Hammell, McManus, Sutton, Vigurs, Lasley, Kerr, Anier (Moore 71), Ainsworth (Francis-Angol 80), Leitch. Subs not used: Stewart, Erwin, Murray, Thomas, Cadden.

Referee: Euan Norris (Iain Brines 46).

Attendance: 4,377.