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Managerless Aberdeen claimed a hard-fought win over Motherwell at Fir Park to end a winless league run that had stretched all the way back to the start of January. 

The Pittodrie side remain a mere three points above the relegation play-off spot, but this display and victory against Motherwell will offer some hope that they can build on this and ease themselves away from there wrong end of the table. 

Leighton Clarkson’s 25th-minute goal, lashed in on the rebound after Bojan Miovski had clipped the left-hand post, was deserved return and proved to be the only goal of the game. 

Motherwell thought they had levelled when teenager Lennon Miller’s shot took a deflected off of Angus MacDonald, but referee Willie Collum ruled it out when a VAR review showed the ball hitting Theo Bair’s hand before it reached his team-mate, a decision that infuriated Fir Park manager Stuart Kettlewell. 

There were no clear cut chances for either sides but credit to the hosts, they continued to attack the Aberdeen for the majority of the second 45.

Bair was unlucky not to find himself one on one with Kelle Roos after receiving the ball just outside the penalty area but the Canadian striker lost his footing, allowing the Aberdeen defense to get back into position.

Roos was on hand again to foil Bair after the break, twice in a matter of seconds at his front post, before the Canada striker glanced a header just wide.

It is a reprieve from recent weeks for Aberdeen but for Motherwell there will be anxious glances again over their shoulder.