Motherwell manager Graham Alexander has been left encouraged by what he saw from his side at Celtic Park during a 2-1 defeat.

A Stephen Welsh header after two minutes was a disappointing setback from a corner early on and Odsonne Edouard made it 2-0 shortly after the second half restart. But the Well troubled Celtic in spells, Chris Long having a penalty shout at 1-0 and Harry Smith watching a goal-bound leveller get cleared off the line by Diego Laxalt after Allan Campbell pulled one back.

Celtic v Motherwell - Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership

Parkhead battle. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Alexander reckons his side perhaps did enough for a point but the performance still provides positives: “I thought we did really well on and off the ball. We had a plan to allow Celtic to have it in certain areas where they couldn’t hurt us.

“But I thought we kept a compact shape and apart from the set-piece goal in the first minute, the rest of the half went as we wanted it to. We just wanted to have more courage on the ball, pass our way out of trouble. The goal at the start of the half gives them a little cushion but we grew in stature.

“Once we got our goal, we had Celtic rattled and had other chances to score. I don’t think anyone could have begrudged us that leveler. You could see our intent, we had four strikers out on the pitch. We were trying to get a result. We are trying to give players confidence that every game is a chance to win points.

Celtic v Motherwell - Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership

Did enough for a point. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

“We were very close, there was a clearance off the line and we could have had a penalty in the first half. I’ve seen the incidents after the game and the officials have got them right. But we came very close.”

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