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    Murphy remains cool despite rumours

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    Cement your name in history

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    Brines to referee Saints clash

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    The Convert for Cash Challenge

  • Archive

    McCall delighted with tough win

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    Hearts win in pictures

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    Motherwell 1 – 0 Hearts

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    Clyde ticket prices confirmed

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    Law loving life at Fir Park

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    Rangers game switched

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    Murphy remains cool despite rumours

    Jamie Murphy has insisted that he is in no hurry to leave Motherwell after yet another splendid individual display kicked the rumour mill into top gear.

    Several scouts were present at Fir Park at the weekend – including several from the Barclay’s Premier League – to watch the young striker slot home the winning goal against Hearts.

    And although Stuart McCall has yet to receive any bids for his 21-year old star, the talent scouts are likely to take rave reviews back to their managers.

    In typically measured style, Murphy is keeping calm and says he will consider his future if any bids come in.

    [pullquote]I have grown up in Glasgow with all my family and friends and I love playing football at Motherwell.[/pullquote]

    A decision process that he says will include asking advice from some of his colleagues who have made similar moves – not always with dream results.

    “I try not to focus on it too much,” Murphy said. “I try to let other people do that and until someone comes in with a bid I can’t do anything but play my best for Motherwell.

    “I have grown up in Glasgow with all my family and friends and I love playing football at Motherwell.

    “There are players in the dressing room at the moment who have moved down south, like Hammell and Lasley, and they would be good to go for good advice if a bid does come in. I am not even thinking about it until something actually happens.”

    The former Scotland under-21 international is clearly reluctant to invite any bids for him as he knuckles down for another successful season at Fir Park – and he is equally defensive regarding any bids for his team-mates.

    He continued: “All the boys are great and there is a great team spirit. I have been here for ten years and grown up with a lot of the boys and they are some of my best friends, and if we can keep the group together it will be good.”

    The likes of Murphy, Humphrey and Jennings are the ones attracting the plaudits and the envious glances from other clubs, Motherwell’s all-time European top scorer was quick to praise the ‘Well backline.

    In a blistering start to the season Motherwell sit atop the SPL, and have yet to concede a single goal – no mean feat from three outings.

    “They were excellent again; Craigan and Saunders did brilliant,” he effused. “Tom Hateley and Steven Hammell were excellent at full back, and then Darren Randolph behind them. With a defence like that you are not going to lose many goals.

    “As long as we are in the top six and can finish as high as possible, it has obviously been a great start to the season. If we win next week we can hopefully stay in the top six for the rest of the season.”

  • Archive

    Cement your name in history

    It’s a new season at Fir Park so why not own your piece of the stadium with one of our fantastic commemorative bricks.

    Are you looking for an unusual gift? Perhaps you celebrating a special occasion? Would you like to remember a loved one?

    Buying a brick at Fir Park is a great way to mark any occasion while supporting your club. A unique gift that lasts for years and that any Motherwell fan will be proud to own.

    You can purchase a brick fascia with your own personal message, whether it be your name, motto or date of birth for just £30.00!

    Each new brick is added to our ever growing wall, which is situated at the back of the Davie Cooper stand, and comes complete with a certificate of authenticity.

    For more information or to order a brick please contact the club on 01698 333 333 or email buyabrick@motherwellfc.co.uk.

  • Archive

    Brines to referee Saints clash

    Referee for Saturday’s Clydesdale Bank Premier League clash with St Mirren is the experienced Iain Brines.

    Brines will be a familiar face to ‘Well fans over the years, none more so than last season where he handled six Motherwell matches, more than any other official.

    He was the man in the middle for the games against St Johnstone in early September, St Mirren at Fir Park one month later, Rangers on Boxing Day, Dundee Utd at Tannadice in January, Inverness in the Highlands last March and the Scottish Cup Semi Final against St Johnstone.

    A Nick Blackman wonder strike and an own-goal from Kevin Rutkiewicz was enough to earn the Steelmen all three points in Perth and late goals from Tom Hateley and Jamie Murphy gave ‘Well a 3-1 against Danny Lennon’s men.

    Managerless ‘Well were thumped by Rangers despite John Sutton’s goal early in the second half. A Kenny Miller double along with goals from Vladmir Weiss and a Steven Saunders own goal gave Rangers a comfortable 4-1 win.

    United were comfortable 2-0 winners thanks to goals from Johnny Russell and David Goodwillie and Inverness ran out 3-0 winners courtesy of goals from Sutherland, Foran and MacDonald.

    His most recent appointment was that fantastic day at Hampden when Craigan, Murphy and Sutton booked ‘Well a spot in the Final.

    To his credit, Brines was excellent in all six matches with the games at McDiarmid Park and the Caledonian Stadium passing off without a single caution; a rarity in modern football.

    The 44-year-old, who has been a top-flight official for a decade and amongst FIFA’s elite group for five years, has already handled the Hibs vs Celtic game in the SPL this season.

    His overall record in charge of the Steelmen is a bit of a mix bag. Of the 29 games he has taken charge of, Motherwell have won ten, draw four and lost fifteen.

    In those games, 102 players have seen yellow, 46 of which in claret and amber, while three have been sent for an early bath.

    Iain will be assisted by Keith Sorbie and Graham McNeillie with Des Roache on fourth official duties.

  • Archive

    The Convert for Cash Challenge

    Congratulations to Motherwell fan, Ian Moniur, who won £50 by scoring in the first ever Fir Park Cash Converters ‘Convert for Cash’ Challenge.

    For those who have not yet seen the ‘Convert for Cash Challenge’, it involves facing by a life-sized statue of Stuart McCall, fans must run round him 3 times, before composing themselves to score past our mascot, Claret, EITHER from the edge of the box (the £100 ball) or the penalty spot (the £50 ball).

    To represent Motherwell at the next ‘Convert for Cash Challenge’ against Rangers enter now at the Cash Converters Motherwell Facebook page by CLICKING HERE.

    Ian earned himself £50, courtesy of Cash Converters.

    In addition, Cash Converters are also donating £150, to their official charity for the 2011/2012 season, Dreams Come True.

    The Facebook page will also give you the chance to win a whole host of other prizes, including tickets and exclusive, money-can’t-buy experiences. Simply “Like” the page, and get entering.

    For your chance to win £100 in the “Convert for Cash” challenge, enter your details at the Cash Converters Motherwell Facebook page now: CLICK HERE.

    The draw will close at 10.00am on Friday August 19th.

    *Please note: You must be aged over 18 to take part, and proof of age will be required on the day. You must also already possess a match ticket.

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    McCall delighted with tough win

    Stuart McCall lauded another clean sheet and another three points as Motherwell regained top spot in the SPL with a 1-0 win over Hearts in a tempestuous encounter at a rain-soaked Fir Park.

    A second half goal from Jamie Murphy was enough to secure the victory after Ian Black saw red for a reckless challenge on Keith Lasley. Lasley himself made the long walk to the dressing room five minutes from time for a trip on Arvydas Novikovas, but Motherwell closed out the game with aplomb.

    As well as earning top spot, the result represents the Steelmen’s third consecutive clean sheet in the league this campaign.

    “I’m delighted with another clean sheet,” McCall praised. “We know we’ve got players up front that can change a game, so it’s vital to keep it tight at the back. I said to the boys at half-time that it could be a 1-0 win and that we needed to defend well.

    “It’s a good start and something that we’re delighted with – but it’s nothing more. We’ll try to keep building on that as we go to St. Mirren next week.

    “We said at half-time that we had to raise it because the first half was a non-event. And although it was a nervous end we’re delighted with the three points.

    “You have to realise that Hearts are a good side and won’t just let you play, but I thought we did well in the second half and played some really good stuff.”

    [pullquote]Hearts are a good side and won’t just let you play, but I thought we did well in the second half and played some really good stuff.[/pullquote]

    The game was a very even contest up until Ian Black’s red card – at which point Motherwell took control of possession and dominated the game, scoring 15 minutes later.

    And while McCall – a tenacious midfielder in his day – admits the challenge was dangerous, he has sympathy for the former Caley midfielder; a sentiment which he shares when looking at the late dismissal of the excellent Keith Lasley.

    The former Bradford boss analysed: “I’ve watched it again and I think they both go in for the ball, fully committed on the greasy surface, and Keith Lasley has got there split seconds before Black. I don’t think there is any malice at all. It looked reckless and I think that’s why the ref has sent him off.

    “In these conditions when you slide in like he did you’ve got to make sure you get the ball.”

    Similarly looking at Lasley’s dismissal, he said: “Sometimes fouls are just fouls. I can understand why the referee has given the booking, but not every foul automatically has to be a booking.”

    Another blistering performance from Jamie Murphy seems unlikely to dampen the fervour surrounding the gifted 21-year old, with the best part of a month left of the transfer window.

    That, allied by a terrific display from several players who could be attractive to other clubs, with do nothing to cease the grinding of the rumour mill. While the former Rangers midfielder is acutely aware of the realities of modern football, he isn’t inviting bids for his star players – a group which has rocketed to the top of the league and is yet to concede a league goal.

    “We’re not encouraging bids and I’m hopeful everyone will still be here at the end of August,” McCall challenged. “I genuinely believe we have a few boys that will go on to play at a very high level, but playing regularly for Motherwell is good for them.

    “We’ve not had one enquiry about any of our players, and long may that continue. I like to think the boys enjoy coming to work, and we’ve worked hard to create a good environment at the club. All of us should enjoy coming to work and I don’t think there is anyone chomping at the bit to get away.”

  • Archive

    Hearts win in pictures

    Pictures from the 1-0 win over Hearts in the Clydesdale Bank Premier League at Fir Park.

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

    [svgallery name=”hearts070811″]

  • Archive

    Motherwell 1 – 0 Hearts

    [tab:Match report]

    Alan Temple at Fir Park

    Motherwell ascended back to the top of the SPL with a hard-fought victory over Hearts in an ill-tempered encounter which saw two men sent off.

    An even, scrappy encounter swung in the direction of the men in claret-and-amber moments after half-time as Ian Black inexplicably lunged into Keith Lasley. Stevie O’Reilly produced the red – and ‘Well began to dominate.

    The man advantage was turned into an advantage on the scoresheet on the hour-mark as Jamie Murphy calmly rolled a lovely finish past Marian Kello from inside the box.

    Further chances followed for Murphy and Law, while Hearts – who appeared to lack a ‘Plan B’ when down to ten men – saw their best chance saved by Darren Randolph; a first half drive from Andy Driver.

    The numbers were evened out with five minutes left on the clock as Keith Lasley was shown a second yellow for a foul on Novikovas – but it proved too late in the day to make a massive impact on the final result.

    Stuart McCall had the pre-match fillip of being able to call on Michael Higdon – coming in for McHugh –  after the bustling striker made a miraculous recovery from a thigh strain which was initially expected him to keep him out for a further week.

    In less positive injury news for the ‘Well gaffer Shaun Hutchinson had to be left out after suffering a heavy knock in training on Friday afternoon. Scotland international Stevie Saunders took the big stopper’s place in central defence.

    Ex-Motherwell striker John Sutton had to be content with a place on the bench on his return to Fir Park, with Paulo Sergio opting to start with Ryan Stevenson leading the line. Indeed, the only change from the side which dismantled Paks of Hungary in midfield was Jamie Hamill replacing the injured Stephen Elliott.

    Early chances were at a premium in miserable Lanarkshire conditions, with Andy Driver providing the only test to either keeper with a shot from the edge of the area, having robbed Stevie Saunders, but Randolph parried away.

    Motherwell’s best chance in the driving rain of the opening stages came after twenty minutes, with Steve Jennings forcing a fairly simple save from Marian Kello, following some excellent build-up play on the right flank from Tom Hateley.

    Further efforts from distance by Jamie Hamill and Marius Zaliukas proved ambitious and foolhardy, and were indicative of a fairly ordinary encounter – yet ten minutes before the break the Steelmen should have been ahead.

    In the first moments of outright quality Nicky Law found Chris Humphrey with a sumptuous 50 yards pass, before the Jamaican picked out Jamie Murphy at the back post with a pinpoint cross. But the Scotland under-21 star couldn’t keep his header under the bar when completely unmarked.

    While ‘Well could have been ahead, they needed to rely on Darren Randolph to ensure they didn’t go in at the break one-down. Andy Driver streamed past Stephen Craigan to collect a loose ball and Randolph had to rush off his line to splendidly block Driver’s dinked effort. The Englishman then had to stoop to save a shot from Jamie Hamill as Hearts enjoyed their best spell of the game in the five minutes before the break.

    If the first half was a tad lifeless then the opening exchanges of the second half made amends – with Hearts being reduced to ten men after five minutes. The tempestuous Ian Black made a crazy lunging challenge on Keith Lasley, despite the ‘Well man being in his own half, which prompted Stevie O’Reilly to produce a straight red card.

    While the numerical advantage did allow Motherwell to gain the majority of the possession, clear chanced remained rare, although Stevie Hammell did somewhat scuff a decent chance wide.

    The home side did finally turn their possession into a lead, partly thanks to a stunning defence-splitting pass from Stevie Saunders. The versatile defender found Nicky Law, who calmly squared the ball to Jamie Murphy, who retained his composure to slot ‘Well into the lead from eight yards.

    McCall’s side were using the man advantage superbly, and could have doubled their lead when Tom Hateley lashed a drive across goal, missing all claret-and-amber jerseys. That was immediately followed by an excellent Kello save, denying Jamie Murphy from point-blank range.

    Paulo Sergio – in his first SPL outing – threw on John Sutton and Arvydas Novikovas but struggled to break down an organized, composed Motherwell side, who used their extra man to perfection. Indeed, the only moment of drama came in the form of a late dismissal; Keith Lasley walking, after a second booking for a trip on Novikovas.

    [tab:As it happened]

    Graham Barnstaple at Fir Park

    Full Time: Great three points and we are still top – three clean sheets in three games

    91mins – 3 minutes being added on, 1 and a half already played!!

    90mins – Sub for ‘Well – Carswell on for Murphy.

    86mins – Lasley shown second yellow for a foul on Novikovas.

    84mins – Hearts final change – Hammill off, Novikovas on.

    80mins – Humphrey on the break fouled by Hammill at edge of box as he lines up to shoot, only a yellow!

    77mins – Hearts second change – Skacle for Templeton.

    75mins – Attendance this afternoon is 5685.

    60mins – GOOOALLLLL – Saunders defence splitting pass to Law who squares to Murphy who beats Kello.

    57mins – Sutton on for Driver for Hearts, mixed reception from Well fans.

    51mins – Can we now make the extra man count?

    50mins – Straight red for Ian Black for a tackle that was high and late on Keith Lasley, now making a meal of leaving the pitch.

    45mins – Second half underway, with Well kicking off.

    HALF TIME: The kids are from the Wishaw Soccer Centre – some quality kids football on show….

    HALF TIME: The ball is bigger than some of the kids! But they seem to be having fun out there.

    HALF TIME: Plenty of half time entertainment today, first Cash Converters Challenge and then Mini Steelmen doing their stuff now.

    Half Time: Poor so far – Motherwell 0 – 0 Hearts.

    45mins – One minute being added on, one too many!!

    41mins – Driver denied by Randolph as he tries to lift the ball over the keeper.

    35mins – Yellow card for Lasley for a late challenge on Mrowiec, no complaints.

    32mins – Law switched play to Humphrey and his cross picks out Murphy who can only head over.

    20mins – Humphrey cross reaches Jennings whose shot from back of box is beaten out by Kello for a corner.

    17mins – Sadly not a lot to report, both sides are cancelling each other out in dismal wet conditions.

    7mins – Murphy and Higdon combine to set up Law but he can only stroke a weak shot wide of the far post.

    5mins – Saunders half clearance reaches Driver at the edge of the box and Randolph saves his effort at full length.

    1min – Game is underway, Hearts kick off and we are hitting towards the South Stand.

    [tab:Reaction]

    Motherwell manager Stuart McCall:

    “It is a good start; It is obviously what we are looking for, but it’s nothing more than that. We have to keep building on it and we look to the next game against St Mirren and nothing more.

    “Hearts had the better chances in the first half, which came from us giving the ball away sloppily. Obviously the sending off had an impact on the game, but it was a little bit nervy at the end. If we could have got the second goal we would have killed them off, but I was delighted with the three points and the clean sheet.”

    Hearts manager Paulo Sergio:

    “Perhaps we should have not have lost, but we have a lot to improve, but I’m sure we will because we have lots of football to look forward to.

    “I feel a draw may have been fair but I offer congratulations to Motherwell.”

    [tab:Man-of-the-match]

    [poll id=”63″]

  • Archive

    Clyde ticket prices confirmed

    Ticket information for the Scottish Communities League Cup 2nd Round clash with Clyde on Wednesday 24th August can now be confirmed.

    ‘Well fans will be able to pay at the turnstiles with admission set at:

    ADULTS:   £12  
    CONCESSIONS:                                            £5
    • Concessions are listed as Under 16s, Over 65s and full-time students with a valid matriculation card.
    • Fans who require wheelchair access should contact John McCaskie on 01555 870122 or email sharon.mccaskie@sky.com.
    • Motherwell fans will occupy the West Stand (along the side of the park).
    • The match will kick-off at 7.45pm.

    Communities League Cup

  • Archive

    Law loving life at Fir Park

    Nicky Law is reveling in the freedom afforded to him by Stuart McCall, as the 23-year old continues to garner rave reviews at the heart of an entertaining Motherwell side.

    The former Rotherham midfielder has settled into the Motherwell side admirably as ‘Well have enjoyed an industrious and progressive start to their SPL campaign – and he admits that he is loving the style of football being implemented by his current gaffer and long-time admirer Stuart McCall.

    “I knew the style of football the manager would like to play,” Law praised. “The manager has played on the floor and quick counter-attacking, more so at Motherwell because we have got better players here than we had at Bradford.

    [pullquote]The staff at Fir Park, the fans and the players have been welcoming to me.[/pullquote]

    “In pre-season we played like that and we looked to carry it on into the league, it’s something we have been able to do. People are starting to recognise Motherwell now as a good footballing and passing side and that’s something we want, but we also want good results on top of that. Our aim is to get into the top six and improve on last season.”

    Law and McCall worked together at Bradford City during the current ‘Well boss’ tenure as manager at Valley Parade, and the Nottingham-born playmaker has already confessed that McCall played a big part in his decision to move up north.

    He also cites the Steelmen boss as a major reason why he has settled in so well – along with the harmony in the dressing room.

    “Within a week I felt like I had been here a couple of seasons,” he praised. “Because everyone was so easy to get on with. It’s predominately quite a young which is easier for myself, when people are around the same age it’s a bit easier to get on with them. The staff at Fir Park, the fans and the players have been welcoming to me and the same with Higgy as well.

    “Obviously the manager knows about me and I know about the manager and that does help because sometimes you can go to a new club and the manager doesn’t know too much about you.”

    Law admits that the SPL standard is a step up from what he has been used to in League Two with Rotherham, and he is keen to challenge himself further when Hearts – many people’s pick as third-force in Scotland – come to town on Sunday afternoon.

    It has been a dramatic week at Tynecastle, with the arrival of Paulo Sergio in the dugout in Gorgie, replacing Jim Jefferies, but Law is expecting a positive reaction from the men in maroon – particularly having just landed a plum draw with Tottenham Hotspur in the Europa League.

    He continued: “They had a good result in Europe last night and we have just found out about their draw in the cup, which is something they will be looking forward to.

    “With a new manager coming in you’re trying your hardest to impress the new manager. That’s what they will be doing but we felt, particularly at home, we can give anybody a game at the best of our ability.

    “They were tipped as the only team that could break into the top two between Celtic and Rangers. They are obviously still looking to do that so it’s a great test for us.”

  • Archive

    Rangers game switched

    Motherwell’s clash with Rangers later this month has been moved to Sunday due to the Ibrox club’s involvement in the Europa League.

    Ally McCoist’s men will take on Maribor in the Play-Off Stage of the competition on Thursday 18th August.

    As a result, the game at Fir Park will be moved to the Sunday (21st August) with a 2.15pm kick-off.

    As was previously scheduled, the game will still be covered live on ESPN.

    >> Updated Fixture List