Motherwell caretaker manager Stuart Kettlewell praised his players for doing the fundamentals right as they earned a first league victory in 12 matches.
Goals from Kevin Van Veen and Max Johnston in the first 19 minutes gave Kettlewell the perfect start and his side held on for a 2-1 win against St Mirren after Ryan Strain quickly pulled a goal back.
It was a first cinch Premiership win at home for six months and moved Motherwell up to ninth, days after Steven Hammell’s exit as manager.
Kettlewell said: “You talk about how to get the supporters onside. You perform, put your body on the line, you run the extra yards and cover your mates. It’s all the fundamentals, all the simple bits of football.
“I’ve been working with young players recently and you try to get that across.
“You might think you are the cleverest guy in the room when it comes to tactics and so on, but those are the fundamentals. Then you can add layers and be cuter and clever once you have earned the right to play.
“We play in Scotland, you need to remember that as well. We’d love to pass the ball to death and create loads of chances, and you will get there, but you need the platform.”
Kettlewell was set to discover whether he would be in charge for Sunday’s visit of Hearts.
He added: “We’ve had brief conversations between myself and one or two officials of the club. I’m a planner so I want to understand what’s happening and I’m sure I’ll get some clarity in the coming hours.”
St Mirren manager Stephen Robinson felt his side paid for a slow start.
“I’m obviously disappointed, disappointed with the first 20-minute performance,” he said. “They did to us what we usually do to other teams.
“They landed on more second balls and put balls into good areas.
“We gave ourselves a lifeline with the goal, but ultimately I don’t think we deserved anything from the game. Sometimes you get nights like that.”
Robinson lost Scott Tanser to injury in the first half and said: “It’s his hamstring so it doesn’t look like a good one, and that puts a lot of strain on a small squad, but you get these disappointments during seasons and you have to deal with it.”