Awful Aberdeen suffered a self-inflicted nightmare at Fir Park and a repeat in the Betfred Cup final will kill any silverware hopes.
Concerningly, the Dons’ worst performance of this term came on the eve of the biggest game of the season with Celtic looming at Hampden on Sunday.
Déjà vu of this dismal showing against the Hoops in the final and the four-year wait to add to the 2014 League Cup will continue.
What will be infuriating for boss Derek McInnes and the 1,198-strong Red Army is that the Dons were the orchestrators of their own downfall.
They gifted three goals to Well who were clinical enough to punish mistakes.
There will be an inevitable post-mortem into the manner of the defeat and the defensive errors but the Reds need to learn lessons quickly and move on for Sunday.
The defensive solidity and composure that have been so key to reaching the final must be rediscovered.
Some Aberdeen players were fighting for Hampden spots in the last competitive action before the clash against the holders.
Instead some may well have played themselves OUT of a starting slot.
Motherwell ruined Aberdeen’s silverware hopes last season by dumping them out of both domestic cups, ironically 3-0.
It is vital the Reds do not let the Steelmen derail cup hopes this season by suffering a hangover from what the Red Army travelling to Hampden can only hope was an aberration.
For proof of an immediate recovery from a bad result the Dons do not have far to look.
Motherwell suffered a 7-1 humiliation by Rangers in their last game but recovered to deliver a sobering defeat to the Reds.
Aberdeen created the first opportunity when Stevie May’s 20-yard strike was blocked by keeper Mark Gillespie.
A superb cut-back from Max Lowe in the 24th minute found Graeme Shinnie breaking unchecked into the box but the skipper shot wide from 15 yards.
Aberdeen were on the ascendancy but then pressed the self-destruct button with a disastrous run of play where they conceded twice in five minutes.
The first was a real howler. Niall McGinn picked up a short corner then tracked back before unleashing a blind cross-field pass that was intercepted by Danny JOHNSON deep inside Well’s half.
He was left one-on-one against Shay Logan who tracked him for a full 30 yards and ushered him wide – but Johnson cut inside and then curled beyond Joe Lewis from 12 yards out. The match turned on that moment.
After the game Aberdeen skipper Shinnie said the goals were embarrassing.
He was spot on.
Moments later the Dons failed to cope with a corner to the near post which spun up and JOHNSON got ahead of Logan to nod in from close range.
As the Reds attempted to haul themselves back, Lowe’s 20-yard drilled volley was blocked by Gillespie in the 43rd minute.
Ten minutes later Lewis Ferguson fired in a 25-yard free-kick but it was straight at keeper Gillespie who easily saved.
Yet it was Motherwell who netted next when Ferguson attempted to blast a Johnson cut-back out of play. It cannoned off Curtis Main and fell at the feet of David TURNBULL who drilled low beyond Lewis from 15 yards to secure the three points.
Aberdeen have shown they can overcome the Old Firm in Glasgow in recent months by beating both Celtic and Rangers.
They will have to find that form on Sunday and consign this shocker to the ones to forget.