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    Celtic 3 – 0 Motherwell

  • Archive

    TV: Vigurs aiming to maintain form

  • Archive

    TV: McCall has a Parkhead plan

  • Archive

    Hollis undergoes ankle operation

  • Archive

    Ainsworth collects monthly award

  • Archive

    Players train ahead of Celtic clash

  • Archive

    Away Day Guide: vs Celtic

  • Archive

    Madden’s in charge at Celtic Park

  • Archive

    Injury setback for Ramsden

  • Archive

    Trust launches More Active More Often

  • Archive

    Celtic 3 – 0 Motherwell

    [tab:Match report]

     Phil McGhee at Celtic Park

    Motherwell were looking to make it a magnificent seven consecutive wins but it was Celtic who extended their winning run with a 3-0 victory.

    However the scoreline, with a double from Kris Commons including one from the penalty spot and an own goal from Stephen McManus, doesn’t reflect the balance of play or Motherwell’s contribution to a entertaining ninety minutes.

    And while up against an inform Celtic, it was amazingly that despite creating a host of chances, ‘Well’s goal drought at Celtic Park extended to eight games.

    Intent on maintaining their winning run and breaking that goal hoodoo, Stuart McCall started with a positive line-up with James McFadden supporting John Sutton through the middle and Lionel Ainsworth supplying from the right.

    However, it was the defence, with Zaine Francis-Angol covering for the injured Simon Ramsden, which was under immediate pressure.

    Inside ninety seconds Gunnar Neilsen had to punch out a swerving freekick from Kris Commons.

    Four minutes later Anthony Stokes beyond the ‘Well back four and although Neilsen got down to push out the striker’s shot, Commons followed up to stroke the ball beyond the ‘keeper to make it 1-0.

    There were claims for offside against the Irishman but assistant Alan Mulvanny was adament the striker had time his run to perfection and waves away protests.

    The visitor’s might have conceded a second goal as Celtic delivered a couple of inviting balls across the six-yard box, with no takers.

    Gradually, though, ‘Well gained some composure and after 12 minutes might have been level.

    Ian Vigurs sent in the free kick and Shaun Hutchison’s flick on found Sutton inside the six-yard box the ball bounced off his thigh into Fraser Forster’s hands.

    The Fir Park side then had a bit more of the play around the home side’s box.

    McFadden tried his luck from 20 yards but his shot was deflected to give the ‘keeper an easy save. Then after 24 minutes, the 48-times capped forward skipped past Efe Ambrose before sweeping the ball across the six-yard line and just beyond Sutton’s sliding boot.

    Bobby Madden upset the home crowd when James Forrest’s angled drive got the merest of touches from the diving Nielsen to take the ball beyond the post, only for referee to award a goal kick. Within a minute the official compounded his mistakewhen, Ainsworth drove the ball beyond Forster’s reach but was rewarded with a corner.

    Nielsen was tested again but Charlie Mulgrew’s powerful header was straight at the ‘keeper.

    Six minutes from half-time ‘Well conceded a sucker second goal.

    Stokes again raced through and as he rounded Niesen inside the box the ‘keeper brought him down earning the Faroese International a booking and Celtic a penalty. With the ‘Well ‘keeper diving to his left ,Commons hammered the spot kick high down the middle to make it 2-0.

    Far from being dispirited the Fir Park side continued to make a game of it in the seond half and should have at least a couple of goas to show for their efforts.

    After 52 minutes Vigurs’ curling shot was dipping under the bar but Forster’s flap sent the ball bouncing in front of McFadden who couldn’t capitalise on the ‘keeper’s mistake.

    The Celtic ‘keeper was at his internationlist best though a minute later when the ball broke to McFadden eight yards out whose placed shot was brilliantly blocked by Forster.

    It was end to end stuff and in the next Celtic attack Stokes’ shot bounced off the top of the cross bar.

    Motherwell’s replied with Sutton setting Vigurs towards the home goal but he was downed as he rounded Ambrose who, although booked, may have been a little fortunate with Vigurs looking to be in on Forster. The ball spinning towards the corner probably saved the Nigerian.

    Any faint hopes of a fightback were killed in the 68th minute when James Forrest raced to the goal line before drilling the ball across the goal, only for McManus to slash the ball behind Nielsen.

    It was harsh on the former Celtic captain, who had put in a solid performance throughout.

    Ten minutes from time Celtic were reduced to ten men when Stokes’ late tackle on Lasley resulted in a straight red card. Despite the extra man, and continuing to push towards the home goal, ‘Well couldn’t make the break through their play deserved.

    In the closing minutes Scott Brown drilled a 20 yard drive just outside Nielsen’s left hand post, Vigurs flashed a similar effort narrowly close before McFadden’s mazy run and shot brought a thoroughly entertaining encounter to a conclusion.

    [tab:As it happened]

     Ally Reilly at Celtic Park

    FT: Celtic 3 – 0 Motherwell #CFCvMFC

    4 minutes added on #CFCvMFC

    89mins: Vigurs inches wide with a stunning effort from 25 yards #CFCvMFC

    87mins: Celtic sub, Balde on for Ambrose #CFCvMFC

    80mims: Celtic sub, Pukki on for Commons #CFCvMFC

    79mins: RED CARD – Stokes off for a heavy challenge on Lasley #CFCvMFC

    75mins: Motherwell sub, Sutton off for Anier #CFCvMFC

    73mins: Motherwell sub, Kerr on for Ainsworth #CFCvMFC

    68mins: GOAL! – A McManus OG makes it 3-0 #CFCvMFC

    67mins: Celtic break and Commons curls his shot just past the post #CFCvMFC

    65mins: Ball drops to Vigurs at the she of the box but his half volley is sliced well over #CFCvMFC

    …..Forster gathers Ainsworth’s shot #CFCvMFC

    61mins: Ambrose booked as ‘Well set up a FK in a good position…..

    58mins: Stokes hits the bar with a curling right footed effort from 25 yards #CFCvMFC

    54mins: Glorious chance for McFadden as the ball drops to him 10 yards out. denied by Forster’s foot! #CFCvMFC

    52mins: Vigurs very unlucky as his bedding strike is saved by Forster who look uncomfortable #CFCvMFC

    49mins: Brown sets up van Dijk on the edge of the box. Fires well over #CFCvMFC

    Second half underway #CFCvMFC

    Teams are back out for the second half CFCvMFC

    HT: Celtic 2 – 0 Motherwell

    1 minute added on

    39mins: Penalty to Celtic……Goal! Commons makes it 2-0 CFCvMFC

    28mins: Forrest glides past Hutchinson and gets a shot away on his left foot. Inches past the left hand post #CFCvMFC

    24mins: Great play from McFadden to skip past Ambrose and get a good ball in. Sutton not far away from connecting. #CFCvMFC

    20mins: Faddy tries his luck from range but a deflection takes the sting out it and Forster gathers with ease #CFCvMFC

    15mins: Fisher booked for a clumsy tackle on Vigurs #CFCvMFC

    12mins: Free-kick to ‘Well from a tight angle. Delivery finds Hutchinson who heads down to the thigh of Sutton. Straight at Forster #CFCvMFC

    9mins: McManus booked for hauling down Forrest mid way into the ‘Well half #CFCvMFC

    9mins: Commons tests Nielsen again from range but his curling effort lacks power #CFCvMFC

    5mins: GOAL! – Commons makes it 1-0 after tapping home a rebound from Stokes’ shot #CFCvMFC

    3mins: Celtic win a corner but Commons’ ball in eludes everyone. Goal kick to ‘Well #CFCvMFC

    1min: Early free kick to Celtic, narrow angle in the right….Nielsen punches clear #CFCvMFC

    We are underway here at Celtic Park! #COYW #CFCvMFC

    [tab:Reaction]

    Motherwell manager Stuart McCall:

    “That’s as well as we’ve played at Celtic Park in an attacking sense.

    “I’m disappointed we haven’t scored.

    “We didn’t cave in after losing the early goal. We’ve a lot to take for the game.”

    Celtic manager Neil Lennon:

    “That’s the best we’ve played at home this season. You’ve got to give Motherwell credit too.

    “Our attacking play was sensational at times and Motherwell found it very difficult to cope with us.

    “It was a brilliant atmosphere, I thought crowd were brilliant and I really enjoyed the whole afternoon.”

    [tab:Man-of-the-match]

    [poll id=”177″]

  • Archive

    TV: Vigurs aiming to maintain form

    Iain Vigurs says there is a determination in the ‘Well dressing room to keep the recent run of good form going when they face Celtic tomorrow.

    The Steelmen have won every match since losing heavily to the reigning Champions at Fir Park in early December.

    It was a painful evening, but one the former Ross County midfielder believes actually helped.

    Asked at Motherwell’s weekly news conference how important it is to not go to Glasgow with a fear factor based on the last result, the 25-year old said: “I don’t think we will, we’ve got some strong characters in that changing room.

    [pullquote]We are obviously aware of their quality, we’ve seen it first hand, but we’re going there full of confidence and looking for a result.[/pullquote]

    “I think it was exactly what we needed, even though you don’t ever want to get beat 5-0. But 18 points from our last possible 18 is the perfect way to respond.

    “It [the 5-0 loss at Fir Park] spurred us on, no doubt, but we’re mentally tough enough to not let our last result against Celtic play on our mind.

    “We are obviously aware of their quality, we’ve seen it first hand, but we’re going there full of confidence and looking for a result. We’ve had good results and are playing quite well so it’s all to play for.”

    -WATCH IAIN’S PRESS CONFERENCE IN FULL ON MFC TV

    MFC TV

  • Archive

    TV: McCall has a Parkhead plan

    Stuart McCall says he has a specific game plan in mind to try and win his first game at Celtic Park as Motherwell manager.

    The Steelmen’s record in Glasgow’s East End isn’t great in recent years, with the last win coming back in April 2008.

    However, following six consecutive league wins, the Fir Parkers go into the match full of confidence and McCall hopes his side can write another little piece of history.

    Speaking at Motherwell’s weekly news conference, the former Scotland international said: “We need to come up with something that will give us more of an attacking threat and we’ll go there in a confident mood.

    [pullquote]For us, it’s about trying to strike a balance between not leaving yourself wide open and being out the game after thirty minutes, and giving them something to think about.[/pullquote]

    “We’ve not managed to score there in my time and, in truth, not created too many chances either.

    “In saying that, the games have always been pretty tight and when we’ve lost, it’s been by the odd goal in a few of those matches.

    “For us, it’s about trying to strike a balance between not leaving yourself wide open and being out the game after thirty minutes, and giving them something to think about and that’s our aim for tomorrow.”

    -WATCH STUART’S PRESS CONFERENCE IN FULL ON MFC TV

    MFC TV

  • Archive

    Hollis undergoes ankle operation

    Goalkeeer Lee Hollis is the second Motherwell player to go under the knife this week after surgery to sort a troublesome ankle injury.

    The 27-year old stopper, who has started ten first-team matches this term, picked up the knock in training three months ago, and has had a series of setbacks on the road to recovery.

    He eventually had to get it operated on this morning, which will keep him out for a further six weeks or so.

    It’s a blow to ‘Well boss Stuart McCall who admits he has now started a search to bring in another goalkeeper as cover.

    [pullquote]It’s unfortunate for Lee as he made a really assured start to the season. Hopefully his operation today goes well and he gets back as quickly as possible.[/pullquote]

    He said: “It’s unfortunate for Lee as he made a really assured start to the season. Hopefully his operation today goes well and he gets back as quickly as possible.

    “It leaves us short and we’ll need to try and add some cover if possible.”

    Further bad news came in the shape of Simon Ramsden whose injury was worse than expected.

    The experienced defender is likely to miss six weeks too. The original hope was he would be back in time for the Partick Thistle game in mid-February, but that prognosis now looks optimistic.

  • Archive

    Ainsworth collects monthly award

    Motherwell club sponsor Cash Converters is delighted to announce that the December Player of the Month is Lionel Ainsworth.

    Lucky ‘Well fans Reece Mcgee and Robyn Stewart won the Cash Converters Player of the Month competition and they presented Lionel with the award at Fir Park this afternoon.

    Speaking to MFC TV, Ainsworth said: “This award means a lot to me. In saying that, I am under no illusions that football is a team game and any award is for the collective rather than the individuals.

    [pullquote]This award means a lot to me. In saying that, I am under no illusions that football is a team game and any award is for the collective rather than the individuals.[/pullquote]

    “Hopefully, both the team and I can continue our form for the rest of this month too.

    “I would like to thank our sponsors, Cash Converters, for hosting the award, the fans who voted for me and Reece, who travelled in to Fir Park today to present it.”

    Look out for the next vote at the end of January to be in with a chance of presenting the award to the winner. Simply visit our Cash Converters SPL Facebook page by CLICKING HERE.

    The Cash Converters Football Facebook page will also give you the opportunity to enter the draw to take part in the next Convert for Cash, and the chance to win a whole host of other prizes.

    -WATCH LIONEL’S INTERVIEW IN FULL EXCLUSIVELY ON MFC TV-

  • Archive

    Players train ahead of Celtic clash

    The Motherwell players were put through their paces at the Fir Park Astro ahead of tomorrow’s clash with Celtic in Glasgow.

    Snaps courtesy of Jeff Holmes.

    [svgallery name=”preceltictraining170114″]

  • Archive

    Away Day Guide: vs Celtic

    Celtic Park

    Stadium Details:

    CelticCeltic Football Club
    Celtic Park
    Kerrydale Street
    Glasgow

    Tel: 0871 226 1888
    Web: www.celticfc.net

    Opened: 1892
    Capacity: 60,832
    SatNav: G40 3RE
    Distance from Fir Park: 11.6 miles (0 hr 18 min)

    Supporter Information:

    Celtic FC have asked the club to publicise the following information:

    • All Supporters buses should use Springfield Road to park as usual.
    • No flags will be allowed entry if there is anything controversial written or displayed on the flag. Please also note that flags can only be displayed over empty seats.
    • Police Scotland will have dogs deployed at the game, assisting with the search for fireworks and pyrotechnics.
    • Celtic FC will carry out a survey of the visiting support as to the reasons why, if any, they do not travel to Celtic park in large numbers.

    Tickets:

    ADULTS:   £26 / £23 
    CONCESSIONS:                       £17 / £14
    JUVENILE:   £10
    • Please note this is an all-ticket match and there will be no pay-at-the-gate on the day of the match. Tickets will be available to buy (cash only) from the ‘Well Shop on Saturday morning between 10am and 1pm.
    • Concessions are listed as Over 65s and Under 16s.
    • Juveniles are listed as Under 13s.
    • The cheaper priced ticket is for restricted view only.
    • Fans who require wheelchair access should contact Sharon or John McCaskie on 07745494631 / 07711 992161 or email disabledfans@motherwellfc.co.uk.

    By car

    The stadium is located in the East End of Glasgow and it is one of the easiest to find in the SPL.

    Simply follow the M74 until its end and then continue into the city on the A74 (London Road). The stadium will be clearly visible ahead.

    If travelling from the East, leave the M8 at Junction 8 and follow the M73 South on to the M74 northbound. Stay on the M74 until its end and then continue into Glasgow on the A74 (London Road). The stadium will be clearly visible ahead.

    There is a large car park at the ground but this is for pass holders only. Street parking is available on the side streets around the ground, although traffic is always very busy before and after the game and please be aware of restrictions due to the on-going 2014 Commonwealth Games works.

    By bus

    Several operators run buses which will take you within a five to 10 minute walk of the ground, including First service 240.

    Further information and timetables are available online at www.firstgroup.com/glasgow.

    By train

    Glasgow Central and Queens Street stations are around a 30 minute walk away from the ground. Dalmarnock and Bridgeton stations are closer and both are served by trains from Motherwell.

    Further information and timetables are available online at www.scotrail.co.uk.

    [mappress]
  • Archive

    Madden’s in charge at Celtic Park

    Referee for this Saturday’s SPFL Premiership clash with Celtic at Celtic Park is the highly-rated Bobby Madden.

    The match will be Bobby’s third in charge of the Steelmen this campaign. The first was the SPFL opener against Hibs at Easter Road, Henri Anier coming off the bench to net the winner on his league debut.

    The other was the 3-1 win over Ross County back in September when the Fir Parkers came back from a goal down to win courtesy of goals from Bob McHugh and a John Sutton double.

    That was only his sixth ever Motherwell match. His first was back in January of the 2011/12 season as the ‘Well slipped to a disappointing 1-0 defeat at home to Inverness; Grégory Tadé grabbing the game’s only goal.

    His second was the thrilling 5-1 win over St Johnstone as Motherwell reaffirmed their grip on third spot in the old SPL. Goals that day from Higdon, Law, Murphy and Henrik Ojamaa’s double all but ended Saints’ hopes of nicking the best of the rest gong that season.

    Last season he also handled two matches. The first was an entertaining 3-3 draw with Aberdeen at Pittodrie.

    Motherwell had raced into a 3-1 lead courtesy of goals from Higdon, Hutchinson and Law but a late Aberdeen fightback handed Craig Brown’s men a draw.

    His second, two months later, was a fine 2-1 win at Tannadice. Michael Higdon opened the scoring before Chris Humphrey rocketed in a second goal of the season contender. Jon Daly pulled one back with his customary goal, but it wasn’t enough as Motherwell held on for the three points.

    The 35-year old has been fourth official on a number of occasions, including Aberdeen in the Scottish Cup last season and the Semi Final with St Johnstone at Hampden.

    The whistler has busy already this campaign, with busy domestic duties topped up with games in the Europa League with Esbjerg fB vs AS Saint-Étienne, KRC Genk vs FC Thun and Lazio vs Apollon Limassol.

    In addition, he handled two UEFA Champions League qualifiers: CS Fola Esch vs GNK Dinamo Zagreb and Austria Vienna vs FH Hafnarfjördur.

    His most recent SPFL appointment was last weekend when Partick Thistle and Ross County shared a 3-3 draw at Firhill. He was also the man in the middle for Morton’s shock 1-0 win over Celtic in the League Cup on Tuesday night.

    Bobby will be ably assisted by Alan Mulvanny and Graeme Leslie with Don Robertson on fourth official duties.

  • Archive

    Injury setback for Ramsden

    SIMON RAMSDEN has been ruled out for several weeks after going under the knife yesterday.

    The experienced defender, who is enjoying a superb campaign, fell awkwardly at Tynecastle and immediately felt pain in his knee, although did see out the ninety minutes.

    However, a minor operation was required, forcing the former Bradford fullback to sit out forthcoming games against Celtic and Aberdeen.

    However, with a three-week break due at the start of February, the 32-year old looks likely to be back for the Partick Thistle game in a month’s time.

    [pullquote]Thankfully, it’s not too bad and he should be back in action next month.[/pullquote]

    ‘Well boss Stuart McCall told motherwellfc.co.uk: “We are obviously disappointed that Rammers [Simon Ramsden] will miss the next two games as he’s performed so well for us this season.

    “Thankfully, it’s not too bad and he should be back in action next month.”

    Meanwhile FRASER KERR has returned to training this week after pulling up when ‘Well last played Celtic back in December.

    The Scotland U21 defender missed the games over the Christmas and New Year period, but is now back in contention.

    LEE ERWIN is still missing long term and goalkeeper LEE HOLLIS remains out.

  • Archive

    Trust launches More Active More Often

    Parents and their young children keen to get more active are being given a helping hand through a Motherwell FC initiative funded by the Scottish Government.

    Minister for Children and Young People Aileen Campbell today backed the More Active More Often programme after visiting Fir Park to meet parents and children who are reaping the benefit, along with some of the club’s community coaches.

    To coincide with Ms Campbell’s visit, one of the PlayTalkRead buses also made a journey to Fir Park, to offer local parents some fun ideas on spending time with their children.The Motherwell Football Club Community Trust was awarded £9,920 in July 2013 from the Scottish Government’s Communities and Families Fund to get More Active More Often up and running.

    The programme is aimed at mothers with young children between the ages of 3 and 5 in deprived areas within Motherwell and Wishaw and comprises a 10 week programme of activity to get the mother and child active together, with a strong emphasis on physical activity and nutrition.

    The cash provided by the Scottish Government enabled the Community Trust to pay for coaching costs, hire of a classroom and gym for 120 hours and training kits for mum and child.

    With Motherwell FC flying high in the Scottish Premiership this season, Ms Campbell said Motherwell are matching their impressive form on the pitch with some excellent initiatives on the sidelines.

    [pullquote]In many ways, football clubs are at the heart of our communities and it’s well known that Motherwell FC is a fantastic community club.[/pullquote]

    She said: “In many ways, football clubs are at the heart of our communities and it’s well known that Motherwell FC is a fantastic community club.

    “Seeing More Active More Often in action today underlines Motherwell FC’s commitment to local people – not just the fans who come here on a Saturday to watch a match. A healthy local community is in everyone’s interest, which is why programmes like this are so important.

    “It’s never too early to encourage our wee ones to develop good nutrition and exercise habits and it can be fun too, as parents can find out on the PlayTalkRead bus.

    “The Scottish Government is proud to support initiatives like this that support our communities to become healthier, smarter and more active.”

    Graeme McArthur, Programme Development Manager at Motherwell Football Club Community Trust, explained: “More Active More Often is a fantastic programme and we are grateful that the Scottish Government have supported this project.

    “Motherwell Football Club is in the heart of the local community and all the staff at Motherwell FC Community Trust strive to make a difference to those living in the local area.

    “From working with mothers and toddlers throughout the Motherwell & Wishaw area, we will aim to change perceptions of the mothers towards nutrition and physical activity. It’s going to be a real joy delivering More Active More Often to the mother & toddlers, it will be great to see the parents & children get active together while hopefully developing a real love of physical activity.”

    The PlayTalkRead roadshow is part of the Scottish Government’s Early Years campaign which focuses on the early years (0 – 3) of children’s lives, and is travelling across the country to all 32 local authorities. Entry is free. You can see when the PlayTalkRead buses will next be in your area at www.playtalkread.org/tour

    More information on More Active More Often can be found at:
    http://mfccommunitytrust.org.uk/more-active-more-often/