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    Craigan announces N.Ireland retirement

  • Archive

    SPL Board Announcement

  • Archive

    Season Tickets: Discounts Galore!

  • Archive

    Disabled Supporters Association

  • Archive

    McCall reflects on Leeds defeat

  • Archive

    Leeds defeat in pictures

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    Motherwell 1 – 2 Leeds Utd

  • Archive

    Club to showcase anniversary kit

  • Archive

    Important Information: Leeds Utd match

  • Archive

    McCall keen on Leeds scalp

  • Archive

    Craigan announces N.Ireland retirement

    Motherwell skipper Stephen Craigan has announced his retirement from International football after picking up 54 caps for Northern Ireland.

    The 34-year old has been a mainstay for Nigel Worthington’s side over the past five years and was captain for his 50th cap last year.

    But the Newtonards-born defender, who played a total of 54 games for club and country last season, has opted to try and extend his club career but reducing his schedule.

    [pullquote]I’ve punched above my weight but I’ve enjoyed that challenge. People have been asking me when I’ve been going to retire since I turned 30.[/pullquote]

    “To be honest I’m giving up international football with a heavy heart,” Craigan told BBC Scotland.

    “It’s harder to recover between games and I thought for the benefit of Motherwell and my club career I had to give myself more of a chance. This definitely isn’t about my career winding down – in fact it is the opposite.

    “The reason for coming away is to try and extend my playing career as much as I can. i’ve been vigilant with regards to looking after myself. I’ve spent loads of money over the years on diets and supplements and sprint coaches and sport psychologists.

    “I’ve gone to all extremes to try and extend my career and this is just another way of trying to do it. It hasn’t cost me financially this time, but it has cost me in terms of playing for my country.”

    ‘Well legend Craigan, who was rewarded with a testimonial last season, admits that playing for his country was amongst his proudest moments.

    Northern Ireland have achieved some incredible success over the past few years including beating England and turning up positives results against Italy and World and European Champions Spain.

    “Until you stand there and hear your national anthem and see your family you can’t explain what it means,” he said.

    “I’ve achieved far more than I ever thought I would. When you do get a little bit down or things get on top of you it’s nice to go and look at some jerseys that you’ve collected over the years. I’m lucky enough to have them from Andreas Pirlo, Dmitar Berbatov, Michael Owen, Cristiano Ronaldo, Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

    “For me to be on the same pitch as these guys, I’ve punched above my weight but I’ve enjoyed that challenge. People have been asking me when I’ve been going to retire since I turned 30.

    “I think we have a habit of ruling people out in football. David Weir has broken that barrier by playing on past the age of 40. We need more players who play beyond their mid thirties to lift that stigma that comes once you reach a certain age.

    “The hardest thing I’ve had to do was to tell my mum and dad that I was giving up. I texted my brothers; I didnt’ have the heart to phone them because I know how much they enjoyed going along and supporting me and the team. That was the hard part for me. But everything was a high for me playing for Northern Ireland. I’ve been lucky, but I’ve worked hard for it.

    “But I haven’t just dedicated myself to football for my country, I’ve dedicated myself to football in general, and for the last 7 or 8 years that’s been for Motherwell.

    “We’ve got a tough season ahead of us and have an obligation as players to respect the game and respect the clubs that we play for so we’ll be doing our best to have a good season. Anything you get in the SPL you have to work hard for and we’re prepared to do that.”

    His National manager Nigel Worthington added: “Northern Ireland is losing a very experienced player and a truly excellent professional.

    “Stephen has been a great servant for Northern Ireland and a fantastic ambassador for the country.

    “It is sad to see a player like Stephen retire but I wish him all the very best in his career which lies ahead.”

  • Archive

    SPL Board Announcement

    At today’s SPL AGM, Derek Weir was elected following nomination to form part of the five-man Board of Directors.

    Ralph Topping was also elected for the third time as Chairman of the Scottish Premier League.

    Derek, Ralph and the Chief Executive, Neil Doncaster, will be joined by Eric Riley (Celtic FC) and Steven Brown (St Johnstone FC) who were re-elected by the clubs to complete the SPL Board.

    Rod Petrie (Hibernian FC) and Stewart Gilmour (St Mirren FC) stepped down from the Board today after eight and two years’ service respectively.

    Ralph Topping, Chairman, said: “On behalf of the Board and the Clubs I would like to thank Rod Petrie and Stewart Gilmour for their time and valued input during their terms; and welcome Derek Weir to the Board.”

  • Archive

    Season Tickets: Discounts Galore!

    Although the Early Bird offer on Season Tickets has expired, there are still plenty of reasons to buy your Motherwell FC Season Ticket.

    As well as extending the free kids offer, which originated in the Cooper Stand last year, all around the ground – we have a brand new initiative for 2011/12 which could save you money at a number of well-known business’ throughout Lanarkshire.

    The club has teamed up with a number of companies including McDonalds, Pizza Hut, KFC, Subway, Brewers Fayre, Access NL, Evans Halshaw, Rita Rusk, Livingwell Health Club and many more to offer you a range of terrific offers.

    For a full list of offers available with your 2011/2012 season ticket – Click Here

    Easier to buy…

    As ever, we’ve made buying your Motherwell Season Ticket as easy as possible. We will, once again, run the interest free option where fans can spread payments over four months (May, June, July and August) without incurring any additional charges.

    If you want to spread payments, Zebra Finance will also return to offer the facility to pay over a 10-month period (19.9% APR).

    How to buy…

    Prices…

    For a full price breakdown, Click Here

  • Archive

    Disabled Supporters Association

    Anyone interested in joining the above association please come along to the Centenary Suite on Wednesday 20th July at 7.00pm.

    Membership is open to any disabled person or individual who feels that they may be able to contribute to the objectives of the MFCDSA and support disabled people.

    Formed under the auspices of CAFE – Centre for Access to Football in Europe a UEFA backed organisation, the association aims to assist MFC improve the facilities at Fir Park and match day experience for all disabled supporters. 

    Positive discussions have already taken place with Leeann Dempster Chief Executive and agreement reached on some issues but to make this work we need your help and more members.

    The club are very supportive and wish to empower the Disabled Association in raising funds, managing match day requirements and generally improving facilities and the match day experience for disabled supporters.

    Want to find out more please come along next Wednesday at 7.00pm or email mfcdsa@talktalk.net.

  • Archive

    McCall reflects on Leeds defeat

    Despite defeat, Stuart McCall was happy with the way his side performed against Championship side Leeds United this afternoon.

    Motherwell took the lead midway through the first-half, the on-form Jamie Murphy adding to his already blossoming reputation with another fine goal – his fourth in four games.

    And although the visitors came back to win the match in the second half, McCall has seen enough to convince him that the Steelmen are on the right track.

    [pullquote]The goal was terrific but I was disappointed to lose the game. It was an entertaining affair with some good performances, but with areas to work on.[/pullquote]

    “I thought we played some good stuff at times; the goal showed the quality we have in the side,” the ‘Well boss told the press after the match.

    “That is what we can do with the players we have in the side; if we can get the ball forward quickly not many can keep up with Chris Humphrey but Jamie Murphy managed it and scored.

    “The goal was terrific but I was disappointed to lose the game. It was an entertaining affair with some good performances, but with areas to work on.”

    Leeds got back into the match following an uncharacteristic error from Republic of Ireland International goalkeeper Darren Randolph.

    The former Charlton stopper has been sensational for the Steelmen since his arrival last summer and in his defence, a heavy downpour made conditions for goalkeepers treacherous at best.

    It’s not something that will keep McCall up at night though, the gaffer instead choosing to reflect on what was another excellent showing from the Motherwell stopper.

    “It (the ball) slipped out of his gloves, and I would rather it happened today and not next week when the SPL starts,” said McCall.

    “All players make individual mistakes but he will bounce back. You can count the number of errors he has made since joining the club on one hand.

    “He made a wonderful save from the penalty and had a number of terrific blocks during the match. He’s a top keeper and I, along with the rest of the staff, players and fans have every confidence in him.”

    With pre-season complete for another season, attention now turns to Inverness Caley next Saturday.

    Terry Butcher and Maurice Malpas’ side, themselves having a very impressive pre-season, travel to Fir Park on the opening day of the Scottish Premier League season.

    McCall admits he is satisfied with the ways things have gone since returning back in late June but is on a mission to turn chances into goals ahead of next Saturday’s big match

    He said, “It has gone well, we are getting up to speed now, all in all we have progressed well ahead of next week.

    “We have been creating chances and that is a good thing, the game against Partick in midweek saw us have 14 attempts at goal and we should be doing better with that number of chances.

    “Overall really pleased with the way we are going.”

  • Archive

    Leeds defeat in pictures

    Pictures from the 2-1 defeat by Leeds Utd in a pre-season friendly match at Fir Park.

    These action shots and more are available to buy online at motherwellPICS.com.

    [svgallery name=”leeds160711″]

  • Archive

    Motherwell 1 – 2 Leeds Utd

    [tab:Match report]

    Alan Burrows at Fir Park

    Despite taking the lead midway through the first-half, Motherwell lost 2-1 to Leeds in an entertaining pre-season friendly at Fir Park.

    The Steelmen went ahead thanks to a wonderfully crafted Jamie Murphy goal; the former Scotland U21 star getting on the end of a terrific Chris Humphrey cross.

    Leeds stepped it up in the second-half and the introduction of Max Gradel proved to be a turning point. The wingers corner set-up fellow substitute Alex Bruce to slot home before combining with Ramón Núñez who scored the winner.

    Steven Hammell and Michael Higdon both passed late fitness tests and made the game, meaning ‘Well boss Stuart McCall opted for the same starting eleven that overcame Partick Thistle on Wednesday night.

    It was a surprisingly quiet opening twenty minutes with only Billy Paynter causing any problems for the home defence. The big striker headed wide after three minutes and over after fourteen but that was the sum total of the chances in the opening stages.

    The game did eventually burst to life midway through the first half and the visitors thought they had gone ahead when that man Paynter put the ball past Randolph after a great Adam Clayton cross from the left. Thankfully for the Steelmen, assistant referee Martin Cryans came to rescue, rightly flagging for offside.

    Two minutes later, Motherwell responded with a Hammell effort that almost put the hosts ahead. The full-back combined excellently with Nicky Law on the edge of the area before curling a left-footed effort off the outside of the post which was eventually cleared by the United defence.

    That action, along with a light rain shower, made the game slightly faster as both teams got their passing in.

    No team looked to be gaining the upper hand until referee Willie Collum handed the Elland Road club a golden opportunity to get their noses in front. Lloyd Sam broke into the area on the left flank and was tightly marked by both Hammell and Law. The winger hit the deck rather unconvincingly and much to the surprise of the Motherwell defence and many of the 4798 inside Fir Park, the referee pointed to the spot.

    Former ‘Well ace Ross McCormack stepped up and side-footed a low effort that was brilliantly saved by Randolph low to his left – the big Irishman’s first penalty save in a ‘Well shirt.

    Whether it was a sense of injustice or not, that chance seemed to spark the Fir Parkers to life and Tom Hateley almost put his side ahead with a curling free-kick from the edge of the box after Patrick Kisnorbo had fouled Michael Higdon.

    However, Motherwell wouldn’t be denied and took the lead a minute later with a goal right out the top drawer. Steve Jennings collected in the middle of the park before releasing Chris Humphrey clear down the right flank with a lovely reverse pass. The former Shrewsbury Town winger delivered a terrific ball across the face of goal where Jamie Murphy was on hand to slot home. A sensational sweeping move from the Fir Park side!

    Stuart McCall made a couple of substitutions at the interval with Ross Forbes and Jordan Halsman replacing Keith Lasley and Stevie Hammell.

    The changes didn’t had any adverse effect on the home side as Higdon almost headed home a Hateley corner after just two minutes. Shortly after, Murphy almost doubled his and Motherwell’s tally for the day with a brilliantly run; skinning three players only for his shot to be saved by the feet of Rachubka.

    Motherwell were sensing blood and only an excellent headed clearance from sub Alex Bruce kept it at 1-0 as Tom Hateley’s corner from the left was dropping straight in.

    Leeds, to their credit, upped their game and had a couple of efforts that almost brought them level. McCormack, keen to make up for his penalty miss; saw his shot deflected for a corner. The resulting kick from the quadrant was almost turned into his own net by Higdon but Randolph saved his blushes by tipping over.

    With the light drizzle turning into a full-on downpour, the away side continued to attack and Ramón Núñez and Robert Snodgress both went close, denied by excellent stops from ‘Well keeper Darren Randolph.

    The pressure finally told as the tourists drew level and, unfortunately for Randolph, the lashing rain had made the ball like a bar of soap. Max Gradel’s corner was spilled by the goalkeeper allowing fellow sub Alex Bruce to prod home from close range.

    Minutes later, the same player almost made it 2-1 Leeds with an excellent volley but he was foiled by an equally excellent save by Randolph, the Republic of Ireland International seeing it late but still somehow managing to get a good two hands to the ball, pushing it away to safety.

    Leeds had turned the screw big time and got themselves ahead eight minutes after Bruce had got them back on level terms. Núñez and Gradel combined on the edge of the area and the former beat the offside trap, just, before tucking beyond the helpless Randolph to send the 1,913 Leeds fans in the South Stand into raptures.

    Motherwell fought bravely to get back in the game and on the stroke of full-time, Chris Humphrey came within inches of levelling only for his shot to be blocked. Gary Smith couldn’t react quick enough to the rebound and the chance was gone.

    Despite the defeat, ‘Well boss Stuart McCall will be happy with the workout ahead of next Saturday’s SPL opener with Inverness Caley Thistle.

    [tab:As it happened]

    Graham Barnstaple at Fir Park

    Full time – 2-1 Leeds in what was a decent game, ‘Well fans showing some appreciation to their side who played well against a decent side.

    88mins – Two more changes – McHugh on for Murphy and Saunders on for Hateley.

    85mins – Young Jordan Halsman has not looked out place since coming on at half time. He has been solid in defence and linked well with midfield.

    75mins – GOAL 1-2, Gradel sets up Nunez who looked offside and he picks his spot behind Randolph – they have stepped it up this half.

    74mins – Higdon replaced by Gary Smith, Leeds have made nine subs!!

    68mins – GOAL 1-1, Gradel corner into six yard box was dropped by the otherwise impressive Randolph allowing Bruce to smash home from close range.

    58mins – Leeds attendance confirmed as 1913, decent turn out from both sets of fans for a pre-season game.

    58mins – Crowd announced as 4798, with almost half of them being Leeds fans.

    55mins – At the other end Darren Randolph finger tips a miscued Higdon header over the bar to save the striker’s blushes.

    51mins – Hateley’s in swinging corner was dropping in at the back post but Bruce got back to clear off the line.

    49mins – Great 50 yard solo run by Murphy sees his shot blocked by the keeper when clean through.

    45mins – Motherwell get the second 45 underway.

    Half Time – Four changes for Leeds at half time with Snodgrass, Bruce, Parker and Gradel coming on

    Half Time – Two half time changes for Well, Halsman and Forbes on for Hammell and Lasley

    Half time – Motherwell 1 Leeds United 0

    39mins – Jennings sent Humprhey clear on the right and he left White for dead before sending a cross into the corridor of uncertainty for Murphy. Brilliant stuff from Motherwell!

    39mins – GOOOOAAALLLL – What a move to set up Motherwell opener, which is finished by Jamie Murphy after a sweeping move down the right.

    36mins – Good news for us Randolph saves McCormack’s spot kick low to his left – first penalty save by Darren as a Motherwell player.

    35mins – Soft pen for Leeds, Lloyd Sam goes down under challenge from Hammelll and Law

    24mins – Hammell and Law combine in the box, and Hammell sees his shot from a tight angle bounce clear off the outside of the post.

    22mins – Leeds have the ball in the net with Paynter side footing in from close range but flag was rightly up for offside.

    14mins – Paynter comes close, this time he heads over a free kick from the right..

    3mins – Leeds almost open the scoring a cross from the right picks out Paynter at the back post but he side foots wide from a tight angle.

    Kick-Off – Game underway with Leeds kicking off and Well kicking towards the South Stand end…

    [tab:Reaction]

    Motherwell manager Stuart McCall:

    “I though we played some good stuff, the goal showed the quality we have in the side.

    “That is what we can do with the players we have in the side, if we can get the ball forward quickly not many can keep up with Chris Humphrey but Jamie Murphy did to get the ball in.

    “The goal was terrific but I was disappointed to lose the game. It was an entertaining match with some good performances, but with areas to work on.”

    Leeds Utd boss Simon Grayson:

    Coming Soon…

    [tab:Man-of-the-match]

    [poll id=”60″]

  • Archive

    Club to showcase anniversary kit

    As the club continues its 125th anniversary celebrations, the team will wear a traditional-styled kit complete with white shorts and claret and amber hooped socks against Leeds Utd.

    The club has, along with Puma and some special assistance from a lifelong ‘Well fan William Kay, designed a retro shirt in the classic Motherwell style.

    The shirt is made from modern heavy-knit polyester fabric and incorporates a replica of the first MFC script badge to be used on the Motherwell shirt.
    Using his design skills and knowledge of Motherwell kits through the ages, William has incorporated a little of the detail of our special anniversary whilst not detracting from the traditional script badge.

    The band on the Motherwell shirt is the most recognised feature on our shirts over the years and it was essential that we maintain that particular tradition.

    Another traditional feature is the player’s numbers. For one game only, special retro style claret numbers will be used and placed above the band on the back of the shirts in a style that will bring memories of the great 1950’s teams flooding back

    The shirt retails at £45 and is available to purchase in the ‘Well Shop and online at www.motherwelldirect.co.uk.

    Please note that the shirt is available in adult sizes only.

  • Archive

    Important Information: Leeds Utd match

    Fans should note that the Davie Cooper Stand will not be open for tomorrow’s match with Leeds United at Fir Park.

    Motherwell fans are invited to sit in either the Phil O’Donnell Stand or the East Stand with Leeds Utd fans occupying the South Stand behind the goal.

    Any fan who has pre-purchased tickets for the Davie Cooper Stand can sit in either the Phil O’Donnell or East Stand depending on preference.

    Motherwell Football Club would like to apologise for inconvenience this may cause.

  • Archive

    McCall keen on Leeds scalp

    Stuart McCall admits he can’t wait to come up against his boyhood heroes when Leeds United visit Fir Park tomorrow afternoon.

    McCall was born and brought up in the shadows of Elland Road and followed the club religiously as a youngster.

    But perhaps more importantly, the current Fir Park gaffer is excited about the test his players will face when they lock horns with one of the best and biggest sides England has to offer.

    “We’ve had a good pre-season in terms of games and training and we are really looking forward to the game now,” said McCall.

    [pullquote]Sometimes in pre-season you can go on tour or play smaller teams and win by nine or ten goals. Whilst that is great for the confidence of your strikers, the defence don’t get worked enough but that won’t be the case tomorrow I am sure.[/pullquote]

    “I understand one of their star players, the boy Becchio, has gone back down the road but that aside, they have a wealth of talent.

    “They’ve just signed the lad Michael Brown, who I played with at Sheffield United; Leigh Bromby is the same. Robert Snodgrass has done brilliantly for them and Ross McCormack needs no introduction at all. Max Gradel has been linked with Premiership clubs so there is plenty there, many with top level experience, to test us and we need that.

    “Although we’ve been very pleased with the quality of opposition in our pre-season games, there’s no doubt whatsoever that our defence and goalkeeper will get properly tested tomorrow. They’ve got players who can create and score; I am sure Darren will be worked, which you need.

    “Sometimes in pre-season you can go on tour or play smaller teams and win by nine or ten goals. Whilst that is great for the confidence of your strikers, the defence don’t get worked enough but that won’t be the case tomorrow I am sure.”

    McCall’s chequered career took him both north and south of the border and the 46-year old has had mixed fortunes against United.

    However, he admits the fondness he has for the opposition won’t get in the way as he searches for another positive result and performance to complete Motherwell’s pre-season which has already produced a 100%, three wins from three, record thus far.

    McCall continued: “I have a good few friends and family coming up from Leeds to watch the game.

    “My dad played with them and I supported them all through my youth, both home and away, and in my day they were a team filled with a lot of Scots like Billy Bremner, Joe Jordan and the Gray bothers. No doubt they’ll bring a big, healthy support which should make for a good game.

    “It’s funny; I didn’t have the greatest of records against them as a player until I joined Rangers. Prior to that, with Everton and Bradford, I don’t think I managed a single win.

    “When I returned to England with Sheffield United we played them one season when they were a league above us and we knocked them out of both Cup competitions and beat them home and away the following season after we were promoted so hopefully we can keep that good run going!”

    The Fir Park boss admits to having one or two injury doubts himself on the eve of the match.

    The Steelmen have came through the last few weeks relatively unscathed until Wednesday night’s clash with Partick Thistle left a few nursing some bumps and bruises.

    “There are a couple of little doubts; Michael Higdon is feeling his thigh and Stevie Hammell took a bang on the knee the other night,” the manager admitted.

    “As much as we’d like them to get another game in before next Saturday, we won’t risk them if there’s any danger. We can work them harder next week if need be.

    “That might give a chance for a couple of the younger boys to come in and experience playing against a really good side in front of what probably will be a healthy attendance.”