Brian Rice thinks nobody can have any arguments over the Lanarkshire derby outcome after Hamilton beat Motherwell 2-1.

The hosts ran into an early lead through Chris Long’s brilliantly taken strike. That was the highlight of Motherwell’s game as Accies took control from that point onwards.

Rice was buzzing with his men. (photo by David Young/Action Plus via Getty Images)

It took until the second half for them to get their rewards. Aaron McGowan rifled a shot past Mark Gillespie as Accies soared into the ascendency. David Moyo completed the comeback via a good header into the corner.

Hamilton are one point off safety but are now five points clear of bottom club Hearts after their first away win of the season. Motherwell meanwhile remain third after the disappointing result.

Rice says he’s buzzing for his players after an impressive victory: “I’m absolutely thrilled for the boys. I don’t think anyone could complain about the outcome. The first 20 minutes Motherwell were on top but after that there was only one team were going to win the game.

An excellent trip to North Lanarkshire. (photo by David Young/Action Plus via Getty Images)

“I was just a bit concerned that we weren’t going to get the first goal but we deserved the victory. The second-half performance was probably the best I have seen since I came to the club.

“We started the second half on the front foot, scored two good goals and I’m just disappointed we didn’t score more. It was a wee bit of everything, first and foremost the quality of our play. We started on the front foot and never got off the front foot.

“Motherwell dominated the first 15-20 minutes but when I changed the shape it helped the team. I felt the last 20 minutes of the first half we were on top. We missed a few chances second half but that’s everything I want from my team – we had a left-back crossing and a right-back scoring.

McGowan was key. (Photo by Ewan Bootman/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

“The boys are delighted – the last game of the decade against our local rivals, who have struggled against recently. We have come here and put on a performance. It’s a great way to go into the break. Any win is fantastic, especially against your local rivals.

“I’m absolutely thrilled with the win but I’m buzzing with the performance and never-say-die attitude, winning every second ball and every tackle. That was a performance right out the top drawer second half. I don’t usually boast about my team but I thought they were absolutely brilliant.

“It’s a boost (to be five points off the bottom) but my concern isn’t with Hearts, it’s with Hamilton Accies. That’s my outlook.”

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