Motherwell easily beat Highland League side Formartine 5-0 to cruise into the Scottish Cup fourth round.
The 1991 winners were two goals up at the interval and added three more in the second period in a dominant display in Aberdeenshire.
Well boss Graham Alexander paid full respect to the part-timers by fielding a strong line-up, which included Scotland defenders Declan Gallagher and Stephen O’Donnell just 48 hours after they returned from international duty.
The visitors were in control from the off but they were gifted their opener in the 34th minute.
Formartine goalkeeper Kevin Main raced to the edge of his box to dreadfully misjudge Gallagher’s long ball forward and Chris Long pounced to prod into an unguarded net.
The Steelmen nearly scored again moments later when Allan Campbell’s near-post volley went narrowly wide from a Steven Lawless delivery.
But they did manage a second before the interval through Jordan Roberts’ clinical 41st-minute strike.
Nathan McGinley’s dangerous cross was not cleanly headed away by Darryn Kelly and the ball broke into the path of Roberts, who made no mistake from around 12 yards.
Roberts found the net again in the 52nd minute as Well’s superiority and fitness levels became evident against the hosts, who had only played competitively once since the beginning of January.
He reacted quickest to turn in Devante Cole’s effort which flashed across goal.
Cole got in on the scoring act in the 63rd minute, finding himself unmarked at the far post to nod in O’Donnell’s cross.
Motherwell’s players were enjoying themselves in the spring sunshine and Campbell swept in a fifth with a neat finish in the 76th minute.
Formartine kept going until the end and managed to see the game out without further damage.
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