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    TV: McCall expecting tight encounter

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    TV: Ask Keith Lasley

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    TV: Society sign up a roaring success

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    Pick February’s best player

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    Officials named for Dons clash

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    Well Society “Sign Up” Evening

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    TV: Goals from East End Park

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    TV: McCall happy with the points

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    Dunfermline win in pictures

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    Dunfermline 0 – 2 Motherwell

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    TV: McCall expecting tight encounter

    Well boss Stuart McCall says he expects another closely fought encounter against Aberdeen on Sunday.

    The Steelmen have managed to have the upper hand in recent fixtures, although every game has been tight; won by the odd goal.

    And with a William Hill Scottish Cup Semi Final place up for grabs, McCall is certain it will be another intense battle.

    “It’s a massive game and I am sure both sets of supporters will be well up for the match, as will the supporters,” he said.

    “Last season both clubs got to Semi Finals of both domestic Cup competitions, thankfully we managed to go one better in the Scottish Cup although never done ourselves justice in the Final.

    “There will be a big crowd here, it’ll be a tight game similar to every game we’ve played against Aberdeen since I’ve been here and hopefully we’ll have a similar result to those matches.”

    -WATCH THE FULL INTERVIEW ON MFC TV-

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    TV: Ask Keith Lasley

    ‘Housewives Favourite’ Keith Lasley talks Swingball success, Readybrek and the protected species that is a strawberry blonde mullet.

    -CLICK HERE TO WATCH THE VIDEO EXCLUSIVELY ON MFC TV-

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    TV: Society sign up a roaring success

    Motherwell fans came out in force this evening and gave the strongest backing yet for the ‘Well Society.

    Over 120 new members joined the Motherwell revolution, putting the society almost £40,000 closer to the initial £250,000 target.

    Steelmen (and woman, of course) of all different age groups were there to meet Stuart McCall and his players, share stories, enjoy a drink and pick away at the buffet.

    Speaking after it, board member Andrew Wilson said, “Since the ‘Well Society was first muted, the overwhelming reaction from Motherwell fans has been one of support and no little pride.

    “Tonight is another example of that. (It was) way ahead of expectations; we started the night a little over half way towards our initial target and we have made great strides tonight to achieving that.”

    -WATCH THE FULL FEATURE ON MFC TV-

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    Pick February’s best player

    It is time for you to decide who you think deserves to win the Cash Converters Player of the Month for February.

    All you need to do is vote for which ‘Well player you think has been the stand-out performer for February and you could be chosen at random from all entries received, to congratulate our star man in person at Fir Park!

    After our very own Estonian Sharpshooter Henrik Ojamaa continued his excellent run of form in winning both the SPL young player of the month and the Cash Converters Player of the Month for January, can he possibly make it back-to-back awards?

    Or maybe Jamie Murphy’s four goals will tip the award in his favour? Could Michael Higdon’s hat-trick and sensational overhead kick against Hibs see the 14-goal hitman collect the award? What about Darren Randolph? Four clean sheets in the last six games is incredibly impressive…

    There are plenty of other options too but to cast your vote, simply visit our Cash Converters SPL Facebook page or by CLICKING HERE.

    The link will also give you the opportunity to enter the draw to take part in the next Convert for Cash challenge, and the chance to win a whole host of other prizes including tickets and amazing giveaways

    For the February Player of the Month – VOTE HERE.

    Cash Converters

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    Officials named for Dons clash

    Craig Thomson is the man in charge for Sunday’s Sky live William Hill Scottish Cup Quarter Final clash with Aberdeen at Fir Park.

    39-year old Thomson, considered to be one of the best officials on the FIFA list, will be handling his third Motherwell game of the current season. His previous two were also live on television as Rangers ran out 3-0 winners back in mid-August and the 0-0 draw with Kilmarnock back in October.

    Craig will be a familiar face to Fir Park fans having been a top-flight official for a decade and taking charge of three league matches last season.

    Thomson was the man in the middle for the SPL opener against Hibs when goals from John Sutton and Jamie Murphy wasn’t enough for the victory as Hibs ran out 3-2 winners thanks to goals from Antony Stokes, Paul Hanlon and Liam Miller.

    His next appointment was the 1-0 home defeat by Hamilton Accies in the Lanarkshire derby. Then Accies striker Nigel Hasselbaink separated the sides with a 15th minute curler from the edge of the box.

    He also took charge of the 0-0 draw with Hearts last April when an unfamiliar ‘Well side did well to take a point at Tynecastle.

    His record in charge of the Steelmen is mixed with nine wins, fifteen defeats and eight draws from 32 matches.

    Not included in that list was the 2007/08 Scottish Cup fourth round replay win against Hearts at Fir Park, when he replaced the injured Stuart Dougal midway through the second-half.

    In those games, Motherwell have scored 39 and conceded 43. 114 players have gone into the book, 56 were wearing claret and amber, while four players, including Stephen Craigan, have been dismissed. The skipper saw red in the 2-0 Scottish Cup defeat to Kilmarnock at Rugby Park six years ago.

    Thomson will be ably assisted by Derek Rose and Alasdair Ross with Bobby Madden on fourth official duties.

  • Archive

    Well Society “Sign Up” Evening

    [portfolio_slideshow timeout=5000 nav=false exclude=”7057, 7142″]

    If you haven’t joined the ‘Well Society yet, this Tuesday (6th March 2012) is the perfect opportunity.

    The club will host a special ‘Sign Up’ Evening in the Centenary Suite between 6.30pm and 8.30pm.

    This informal drop in, complete with finger buffet and a fully stocked pay bar, will allow you to ask any questions you may have regarding the Society to the people that matter – the board.

    What’s more, the management team and players will also attend. Why not bring along your MFC memorabilia for signing and your camera for a couple of snaps? Chat to Stuart McCall and the lads about what an excellent season we are having.

    Moreover, this is the perfect time for you to join our revolution – a once in a lifetime chance for the fans to not only have an influence in the club, but eventually run it.

    For further information on the Well Society, including membership forms, CLICK HERE or phone Alison Wallace on 01698 333333.

    Well Society

  • Archive

    TV: Goals from East End Park

    Motherwell pick up all three points thanks to goals from Michael Higdon – his 14th of the season – and Estonian sharpshooter Henrik Ojamaa.

    -WATCH THE GOAL ACTION ON MFC TV-

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    TV: McCall happy with the points

    ‘Well gaffer Stuart McCall was happy with today’s three points despite his side’s indifferent first half showing.

    The Steelmen looked lacklustre in the first half against a struggling Dunfermline side who are now rooted to the bottom of the table.

    However, a much better half showing gave ‘Well the win and keeps the Steelmen in third, within touching distance of Rangers in second.

    McCall was glad his side managed to turn their fortunes around to claim the three points.

    “We weren’t happy at half time,” he admitted. “We warned the boys not to think they can just turn up and I thought four or five just weren’t good enough and we could only improve that’s for sure, and, thankfully, we did.

    “I feel for Dunfermline, they put in a great deal of effort but the first goal is always crucial. Even though it’s well worked, maybe it’s a slight goalkeeping error as he’s let it slip under him. We had a wee bit of fortune and went on and looked dangerous.

    “We made the substitution at half time . Chris came on and gave us a spark, Henrik gave us a little spark for fifteen to twenty minutes, Law got more into the game and again I thought Jennings was terrific from first to last; we defended quite resolutely.

    “We’ve got no given right to turn up to every game and think we can play our pretty football but thankfully we upped our game in the second half and got a much needed three points.”

    -WATCH THE FULL INTERVIEW EXCLUSIVELY ON MFC TV-

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    Dunfermline win in pictures

    Pictures from the 2-0 win over Dunfermline in the Clydesdale Bank Premier League at East End Park.

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

    [svgallery name=”dunfermline030312″]

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    Dunfermline 0 – 2 Motherwell

    [tab:Match report]

    twitter Kris Jack at East End Park

    A close range strike from MICHAEL HIGDON and a sublime HENRIK OJAMAA goal proved enough to earn Motherwell a third win of the season over Dunfermline.

    The East End Park side frustrated the visitors for the opening hour, before a calamitous blunder from goalkeeper Chris Smith set Motherwell on their way to the win.

    It was a game which neither side exerted themselves upon in the first half, mainly thanks to a poor pitch, but Motherwell upped it in the second half and probably just about deserved to take all three points.

    KEITH LASLEY’S yellow card count meant he would miss the game through suspension, so Stuart McCall reverted to how he set out the side against Hibernian, with Omar Daley returning to the starting eleven.

    LEE HOLLIS took a place on the bench after recovering from hip surgery, as back up to DARREN RANDOLPH. Jim McIntyre’s side also had one change, with Jordan McMillan returning to the starting line-up, and experienced striker Andy Barrowman left on the bench.

    In the opening exchanges, Dunfermline were first to threaten when Liam Buchanan tried a spectacular effort from 20 yards; Darren Randolph got down well to the forward’s daisy cutter and the scores stayed level.

    Ojamaa should have done better when he fought to get a shot away in the box, after great play between JAMIE MURPHY and Higdon. However, the Estonian blazed his shot well wide after getting control of the ball.

    Play swung down the other end quickly and Randolph made his only real contribution of the game when he acrobatically palmed out a great effort from the right boot of Martin Hardie.  The Dunfermline midfieleder hit a swett half volley with the outside of his right boot, from 20 yards, which the Irish goalie dived to his right hand corner to keep out.

    Dunfermline played with more confidence than they had dome in this season’s previous encounters with Motherwell, and Ryan Thomson should have hit the target after a great cross from Jordan McMillan landed on his foot. SHAUN HUTCHINSON was in the right place to block his effort over for a corner.

    There was little rhythm to Motherwell’s play and the few chances created perhaps could have been executed better.

    One example was when Higdon failed to capitalise on a great TOM HATELEY run and pass. The ball fell to the big striker, via Murphy, on the penalty spot but Chris Smith saved the low shot at the second attempt.

    Motherwell finished the half stronger and on the stroke of the interval, OMAR DALEY was unlucky to see his cross come shot tipped over by Smith.

    To change things up Jim McIntyre replaced Joe Cardle with Paul Willis for the second half, while Stuart McCall took off Daley and replaced him with CHRIS HUMPHREY. It would be the ‘Well sub who would make the much bigger impact.

    By having Humphrey out on the right, it meant the Dunfermline defence pulled an extra man over to cover his runs. This created acres of space for Murphy to exploit on the left, which he almost did perfectly after the restart. Ojamaa fed the former Scotland U21 striker on the wing, he roasted Jordan McMillan before having his shot blocked in the box.

    The impressive Hutchinson, who was bombing forward as often as he could, was booked for pushing Willis just outside the box, as Dunfermline tried to muster up a threat in front of goal. A spell of sustained pressure form three corners in a row failed to provide them with a clear cut chance though, before Martin Hardie managed to head over from a Ryan Thomson cross on the hour.

    The turning point came five minutes later thanks to an error from Dunfermline keeper Smith. Humphrey cut inside his man on the right and fed a lovely ball outside the left back to the supporting Ojamaa. The Estonian’s low cross was poked goalward by Higdon, but as Smith dropped on the ball, it somehow squirmed through him and in to the back of the net. It was a horrible goal to concede, but a magnificent one to score for Higdon, who celebrated in front of the noisy away support.

    Humphrey was relishing his role on the right and drew a booking for Austin McCann when Pars’ defender had to rugby tackle him to stop him bursting through on goal. It didn’t deter the Jamaican though, as he went on to set up the clinching second goal for Ojamaa. Picking the ball up amidst the craters of mud on the right wing, Humphrey majestically jinked between Dowie and McCann in to the box, before laying the ball off to Ojamaa who rifled a first time effort in to the far top corner from 16 yards.

    It was a great finish by the exciting Estonian and he should have had his second and Motherwell’s third when Higdon centred for him after more good work from Humphrey. However, the ball was slightly behind him and stuck in the mud before he could get the shot off.

    Pars threw on Barrowman to try to make something happen up front, but Motherwell remained on the front foot for the rest of the game.

    A Tom Hateley free kick just evaded TIM CLANCY at the back post and Ojamaa glanced a rare header wide from another Humphrey cross as Motherwell applied more pressure on the Dunfermline back line.

    STEPHEN CRAIGAN came on for the war-wounded Hutchinson, as McCall’s men looked to see the game out. Murphy then went on another pacy run round the outside of McMillan before shooting across goal. Smith looked to have got a touch to send it out, but the referee robbed him of a save to make up for his earlier clanger by pointing for a goal kick.

    It was not quite a vintage performance, but a 2-0 win away from home was enough to keep the pressure on Rangers, who lost 2-1 to Hearts. The victory put Motherwell three points behind the administrated Glasgow side as the quest for a European slot continues.

    [tab:As it happened]

    twitter Alan Burrows at East End Park

    Full time: Dunfermline 0 Motherwell 2

    90mins – Have come and gone but not board as yet. Can’t be long to go!

    88mins – Well fans sing about watching Brazil! About a 600-pass move is rounded off by a Murphy shot just over.

    85mins – Jennings, my man of the match, fires a low shot just wide of the post. The midfield general has been awesome again!

    84mins – Murphy bursts clear on the right. He rips McMillan but his shot is tipped wide. Incredibly, it’s a goal kick. Smith with be raging.

    80mins – Craigan is brought on in place of Shaun Hutchinson who has been through the wars!

    79mins – Henrik heads just wide from about the 80th corner in a row. At that, Pars bring on McDougall for Mason!

    76mins – Pars sub – Hardie off and is replaced by Andy Barrowman!

    73mins – Chris Humphrey has made a massive difference! He’s tearing the Pars down the right flank. Magnificent!

    70mins – What a goal from Ojamaa. BRILLIANT play from Humphrey on the right. Dinks past two. Rolls in Henrik from 18 yards – BOOM!!!

    GOAL – OJAMMMMAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    64mins – It’s harsh on Dunfermline. They’ve not been dominating by any matter but they don’t deserve to be behind that’s for sure…

    63mins – Disaster for Pars goalie Chris Smith. Ojamaa cross from t left. Higdon pokes at goal – Smith lets it squirm into the net. Wow!

    63mins – GOOOALLLLLLLLLLLL Michael Higdon!

    62mins – Pars head over after another quick break. Hutchinson is down with a knock in the middle of the park and needs treatment.

    60mins – Game is so, so, so scrappy! Motherwell haven’t really got out of first gear all afternoon. Pars force 3 corners in a row though…

    48mins – Play swinging from end to end – game is stretched. Both sides creating half chances!

    46mins – Motherwell win a corner but when Hateley goes to take it, the turf gives way and the chance is gone.

    45mins – Motherwell get the second half underway! C’mon the ‘Well!!!

    HT: Motherwell also make a change. Daley is off – Chris Humphrey is on!

    HT: Pars make a sub – Cardle off for Willis!

    HT: Poor first half here at East End Park. Pitch isn’t helping either side play any decent footy. More required in the second from ‘Well!

    Half Time – Dunfemline 0 – 0 Motherwell

    44mins – Game is so stop/start. Referee is not helping giving strange calls and not giving what looked like obvious claims.

    39mins – Poor refereeing from Brian Winter. Hardie gets away with a climb – 39 seconds later, Higdon is booked for the exact same thing.

    37mins – Omar isn’t getting much change out of the full-back and has been switched over to the right. Murphy is now on the left.

    29mins – Great chance for Higgy. Terrific run from Hateley – his ball finds Murphy then to the big man. Low shot is well held by Smith.

    28mins – Fans singing a nice wee ditty for Bob McHugh on his return to the squad. This is a family twitter though so better not repeat…

    25mins – Henrik gets to the byline – Great ball across the face but it is touched behind for a corner. Pars clear the resulting kick…

    22mins – Another long range effort from the Pars, this time deflected wide by one of their own players, goes just past the post.

    21mins – Still 0-0 here. Pars having more of the ball and probably better of the chances thus far…

    15mins – Wonderful cross field pass by Hammell has Murphy in space. His teasing near-post cross is cleared by the home defence.

    10mins – Wind getting up down there at pitch level. Blowing towards the Motherwell goal making kick-outs difficult…

    8mins – Pars have another chance, good ball from the left, ball into the middle but the shot is deflected over for a corner. Pars on top!

    7mins – The pitch down in front of the Main Stand is cutting up badly. Almost like it was at FP back in 09/10.

    6mins – Motherwell give it away cheaply. Hardie picks up and curls a lovely shot at goal. Randolph makes a great save…

    4mins – Pars win a corner but Motherwell break. Daley counters but his final ball lets home down and Pars clear.

    3mins – Motherwell hit back almost straight away. Great flowing move. Murphy’s shot is blocked but falls to Ojamaa. He blazes over!

    2min – Long range shot from Buchanan is the first of the afternoon. Darren Randolph gathers fairly easily…

    1min – Higdon is pulled up for a nothing foul already and we’re only 30 seconds in. Story of the season that… #frustrating

    1min – Dunfermline kick off – shooting to the ‘Well fans in the traditional away end here at East End Park.

    [tab:Reaction]

    Motherwell manager Stuart McCall:

    “I am delighted with the three points, after a poor first half display.

    “I thought first and foremost that Dunfermline worked a lot harder than we did in the first half and I told the front four we needed more from them in the second half.

    “The first goal is always crucial and we managed to get it, we looked dangerous in the second half and the players who didn’t show in the first half like Henrik (Ojamaa) and Higgy (Michael Higdon) performed much better in the second half.

    “Chris Humphrey also gave us a spark, I took Omar Daley off as he just had one of these days that wingers sometimes have.” 

    Dunfermline manager Jim McIntyre:

    “I thought we started the game really well and were on the front foot against what is a good side, but the first goal changes everything.

    “The big man knows he has to save it, it’s a bread and butter save. What I would say is Chris has bounced back before, it’s a horrible position and to be honest I don’t know why anyone would want to be a goalkeeper growing up.”

    [tab:Man-of-the-match]

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