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    Hamilton defeat in pictures

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    TV: McCall angered with Cup exit

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    Hamilton Accies 0 – 0 Motherwell

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    Christmas Parties at Fir Park

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    TV: Twardzik eyes derby success

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    TV: McCall desperate for Cup showing

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    Charleston to officiate Cup clash

  • Archive

    Helen Templeton’s Blog #3

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    TV: Highlights from Celtic Park

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    Celtic draw in pictures

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    Hamilton defeat in pictures

    Action pictures from this evening’s 6-5 penalty defeat by Hamilton Accies in the League Cup.

    Snaps courtesy of SNSPix.

    [svgallery name=”hamilton240914″]

  • Archive

    TV: McCall angered with Cup exit

    Stuart McCall is starting to believe his side are cursed in the cups after they bowed out of the League Cup at Hamilton.

    A controversial red card for on loan Derby defender Mark O’Brien hindered ‘Well, who eventually lost 6-5 on penalties at New Douglas Park.

    The Steelmen had the better chances, particularly after the dismissal of Accies’ Stephen Hendrie midway through the second half, as Michael McGovern produced a stunning stop to deny Iain Vigurs and both Josh Law and Lionel Ainsworth hit the frame of the goal within seconds of each other.

    O’Brien was booked during half-time for a challenge on Eamonn Brophy seconds before the interval – despite the fact Craig Charleston did not give a free-kick or produce a card – and then sent off 10 minutes into injury-time for what the referee decreed was a body check.

    The game went to penalties and teenager Craig Watson scored the crucial spot-kick for the Accies after McGovern had saved from Simon Ramsden.

    [pullquote]The second yellow card is an absolute joke. It’s barely a foul and if that’s a yellow card I’m Dutch. You always think referees look to even things up and that decision swung the balance of the game.[/pullquote]

    Speaking about O’Brien’s first booking, McCall said: “I’ve never seen that in my entire life. O’Brien makes a tackle and the referee blows for half-time.

    “We all came off the park and go in the dressing room, and the fourth official comes and says he wants to have a word with Mark O’Brien, after being harangued coming off the park. And then he calls him in and books him.

    “Why didn’t he book him on the park? And I thought here we go, this is going to be typical. And the second yellow, he body-strengths him off the ball.

    “The second yellow card is an absolute joke. It’s barely a foul and if that’s a yellow card I’m Dutch. You always think referees look to even things up and that decision swung the balance of the game.

    “But for an unbelievable save from Vigurs, we would have gone through.”

    When asked if he was starting to think his side were cursed in the cup after winning just four out of 20 ties, he said: “When we hit the bar and post, I genuinely thought that myself, it’s not going to be our night. Credit to Accies, they are a very good side and we’ll need to quickly pick ourselves up for the game on Saturday at Fir Park.”

    MFC TV

  • Archive

    Hamilton Accies 0 – 0 Motherwell

    [tab:Match report]

    Motherwell’s dismal Cup form continued when they were knocked out of the League Cup on penalties at New Douglas Park.

    There was little between the sides in a fiercely contested clash, but luck deserted the Fir Parkers.

    It was a cruel cup exit with Stuart McCall’s men looking the more likely to score and having no luck when the bar and post were rattled in quick succession in extra time.

    While Accies had the better of the first half, Motherwell controlled most of the second, especially when Accies’ Stephen Hendrie was sent off.

    However, when Mark O’Brien was harshly shown a second yellow card in extra time, it left both teams level in every aspect, ultimately only separated after 12 penalty kicks.

    Even then it was close as John Sutton, Stepehn McManus, Henrik Ojamma, Jack Leitch and Josh Law expertly converted their spot kicks, before Simon Ramsden’s kick was saved by Michael McGovern leaving Craig Watson to ram his penalty past Dan Twardzik and send Accies into the quarter finals.

    Stuart McCall made two changes from the side that performed so well at Celtic Park, Lionel Ainsworth and Jack Leitch coming in at the expense of Zaine Francis-Angol and Simon Ramsden.

    Not surprisingly it was a frenetic start on Accies plastic pitch with the ball moving from one end to the other with neither side able slow the game down.

    After 15 minutes a good break from ‘Well found Ainsworth heading down the right, but his final ball across the box was too far ahead of the inrushing Josh Law.

    Mark O’Brien then had to make a sliding challenge just outside his six-yard box to deflect Eamonn Brophy’s strike at goal.

    An inswinging corner from the home side had Dan Twardzik firmly punching the ball out from under his cross bar. The Fir Park ‘keeper then produced the first save of the match after 26 minutes when he leapt high to his left to spectacularly hold a rising shot from Brophy.

    Motherwell mustered their first attempt on the home goal eight minutes later but at the end of a series of passing Leitch, from 30 yards, screwed his shot off target.

    As the ‘Well players started to find their feet on the artificial surface more of the play headed towards McGovern’s goal and the ‘keeper was relieved to watch Mark O’Brien power his header over the cross bar from ten yards.

    Ten minutes after the break ‘Well passed up a great chance for the opening goal. Vigurs’ long clearance from an Accies corner sent Ainsworth racing clear but after making his way to the goal line his cross failed to find the waiting John Suton and Law.

    Two minutes later Ainsworth’s drive from the edge of the box deflected off the arm of an Accies defender but referee Craig Charleston waved aside appeals for a penalty.

    The game was turning Motherwell’s way and Ainsworth becoming more involved. And his next pass was perfectly weighted for Sutton but Ziggy Gordon intervened to scoop the ball behind for a corner.

    The pressure on the home side increased twenty minutes into the half when Accies were reduced to 10 men after Stephen Hendrie pulled down Ainsworth to earn his second yellow card.

    It just looked a question of when ‘Well would find the opener. And when Vigurs’ low corner found Sutton in the six-yard box he should have done better than slide his shot two yards wide.

    With 15 minutes remaining ‘Well produced their best move and chance. Leitch found Kerr out on the right and his cross was touched on by Sutton into the path of Vigurs whose thumping volley seemed certain for a wonderful goal until McGovern matched it with a stunning stop.

    After 77 minutes, Vigurs made way for Henrik Ojamma. Within minutes of his arrival he was teed up by Law but from 20 yards, the Estonian dragged his shot wide of goal.

    In the last chance of the 90 minutes Ainsworth’s floated free kick found Sutton but his header drifted over the bar.

    Both ‘keepers had comfortable saves at the start of extra time, before the Hamilton goal had an amazing escape.

    A smart one-two sent Law through but after he fired the ball past the advancing McGovern, it rebounded from the cross bar. With the ‘keeper stranded Ainsworth fired the loose ball towards goal only to see it strike the post and rebound past an inrushing defender and Law.

    Motherwell were then reduced to 10 men when Mark O’Brien was harshly shown a second yellow. That forced Stuart McCall to re-organise his back four sending on Simon Ramsden for Ainsworth.

    That left both teams level for the remaining 20 minutes of extra time but with neither side able to break the deadlock it came down to a dramatic penalty shoot out.

    [tab:As it happened]

     Ally Reilly at New Douglas Park

    It’s all over. Accies win 6-5 on pens

    Accies pen 6: Watson….Scores!

    Motherwell pen 6: Ramsden… SAVED

    Accies Pen 5: Imrie….scores

    Motherwell pen : Law scores!!

    Accies Pen 4: Longridge..scores.

    Motherwell Pen 4: Leitch…scores!!

    Accies Pen 3: Devlin…Scores

    Motherwell Pen 3: Ojamaa……SCORES!

    Accies Pen 2: Crawford…scores.

    Motherwell Pen 2: McManus….SCORES!!

    Accies Pen 1: Gillespie…..Scores in off the bar!

    Motherwell Pen 1: Sutton…….SCORES!

    Nervous.

    ET FT: Still 0-0 so penalties it is! #HAFCvMFC

    3 minutes left until penalties….#HAFCvMFC

    ET 21: Ojamaa’s powerful front post cross is plucked out the air by McGovern #HAFCvMFC

    Second half of extra time is underway… #HAFCvMFC

    ET HT: Hamilton Accies 0 – 0 Motherwell #HAFCvMFC

    ET 14mins: Motherwell sub, Ainsworth off for Ramsden #HAFCvMFC

    ET 11mins: RED CARD: O’Brien gets his second booking and he’s off! Looked soft #HAFCvMFC

    ET 8mins: Decent effort from Lyon who drills a low shot from distance just wide. #HAFCvMFC

    ET 5mins: Law hits the bar, falls to Sutton who fires it back into the path of Law but he cant convert!! What a chance #HAFCvMFC

    ET 4mins: Laws cuts it back to Leitch on the edge of the box and he is unlucky to see his shot curl just wide #HAFCvMFC

    ET 2mins: Ojamaa wins a free-kick in a great area…Ainsworth opts to deliver but McGovern gathers with ease #HAFCvMFC

    Firs half of extra-time is underway #HAFCvMFC

    FT: Hamilton Accies 0 – 0 Motherwell….to extra-time it goes #HAFCvMFC

    2 minutes added on #HAFCvMFC

    89mins: Free-kick to ‘Weill in a wide area….Sutton’s header loops just over! #HAFCvMFC

    84mins: Accies sub, Redmond off for Imrie #HAFCvMFC

    83mins: Greatfootball by ‘Well and as the ball falls to Ojamaa just ouside the box, his left footed shot flies inches wide! #HAFCvMFC

    79mins: Motherwell sub, Vigurs off for Ojamaa #HAFCvMFC

    78mins: Accies sub, Neil is off for Lyon #HAFCvMFC

    77mins: Routine save from Twardzik to deny a soft Crawford shot from distance #HAFCvMFC

    75mins: INCREDIBLE save from McGovern who somehow gets a hand to Vigur’s powerful close range volley :O #HAFCvMFC

    71mins: Great chance for Sutty who slid in to meet Vigurs’ low corner but it flies just past! #HAFCvMFC

    69mins: Accies sub, Andreu off for Watson #HAFCvMFC

    65mins: RED CARD! Hendrie is given his marching orders for a second booking #HAFCvMFC

    61mins: Neil flies into a header leading with his elbow. Nothing given, Lasley, temporarily forceed off for treatment #HAFCvMFC

    59mins: Vigurs booked for dissent as yet again ‘Well have a strong handball claim turned away! #HAFCvMFC

    57mins: Brophy gets on the end of a front post cross but can only poke the ball wide #HAFCvMFC

    56mins: Great chance for ‘Well to break but the ball seemed to take an age to settle for Ainsworth to get a touch on it. Accies recover.

    54mins: Redmond is booked for hacking down Leitch #HAFCvMFC

    Leitch and Lasley get the second 45 underway. COYW! #HAFCvMFC

    The teams are back out for the second half #HAFCvMFC

    HT: Hamilton Accies 0 – 0 Motherwell #HAFCvMFC

    45mins: Hendrie is booked for Accies #HAFCvMFC

    44mins: O’Brien heads Vigurs’ free-kick delivery over the bar #HAFCvMFC

    41mins: McManus is booked for a barge from behind. #HAFCvMFC

    38mins: Andreu volleys well over on his left foot from 25 yards #HAFCvMFC

    35mins: Corner to ‘Well….free header for Sutton but he heads well over! #HAFCvMFC

    34mins: Patient build-up play from ‘Well eventually finds its way to Leitch whose awkward half volley isn’t far wide #HAFCvMFC

    27mins: Acrobatic save from Twardzik to deny Andreu’s shot from distance… #HAFCvMFC

    25mins: Looked like a foul on Lasley but ref waves play on. Fortunately Crawford fires his long range shot well over #HAFCvMFC

    23mins: Lovely one two by Law and Lasley but as Law prepares to shoot, the ball gets caught under his feet and the chance is gone #HAFCvMFC

    20mins: Accies win a corner. From the delivery, ref says Twardzik was fouled and play is stopped #HAFCvMFC

    16mins: Great chance for Crawford after he is slid though 1 on 1 but O’Brien gets back to clear! #HAFCvMFC

    15mins: ‘Well counter but Ainsworth’s ball into the box has no takers. #HAFCvMFC

    14mins: Decent spell of pressure from Accies but Andreu can’t get enough power in his header to trouble Twardzik #HAFCvMFC

    11mins: Great defending from McManus who throws himself in front of Longridge’s shot from the edge of the box #HAFCvMFC

    Second delivery is swept clear by the Accies defence #HAFCvMFC

    8mins: Law forces a corner,which Andreu heads wide for another one. #HAFCvMFC

    6mins: First sniff of a chance for Accies but the through ball for Hendrie runs out of play for a goal kick #HAFCvMFC

    5mins: Accies with the bulk of the ball in the opening 5, but no real chances as yet #HAFCvMFC

    Out come the teams, ‘Well fans in great voice already. COYW!!! #HAFCvMFC

    [tab:Reaction]

    Motherwell manager Stuart McCall:

    “I’ve never seen that (O’Brien’s first booking) in my entire life. O’Brien makes a tackle and the referee blows for half-time.

    “We all came off the park and go in the dressing room, and the fourth official comes and says he wants to have a word with Mark O’Brien, after being harangued coming off the park. And then he calls him in and books him.

    “Why didn’t he book him on the park? And I thought here we go, this is going to be typical. And the second yellow, he body-strengths him off the ball.

    “The second yellow card is an absolute joke. It’s barely a foul and if that’s a yellow card I’m Dutch. You always think referees look to even things up and that decision swung the balance of the game.

    “But for an unbelievable save from Vigurs, we would have gone through.”

    Hamilton Accies manager Alex Neil:

    “It’s good to be in the next round.

    “I’ve got about seven first-team players out at the moment.

    “I had three 18-year-olds playing towards the end with 10 men and one of the 18-year-olds pops up and scores the winning penalty, so you couldn’t really write the script.

    “For the last year and a bit everything seems to be really falling into place.

    “One thing about us is we’ve got huge energy in the squad. We’re doing well at the moment, we’re proving a hard nut to crack.”

    [tab:Man-of-the-match]

    [poll id=”202″]

  • Archive

    Christmas Parties at Fir Park

    For a truly unforgettable occasion, Motherwell FC are delighted to offer the perfect destination, a choice of tempting cuisine and sparkling entertainment this winter.

    Christmas parties at Fir Park are always a night to remember and this year will be no different.

    We’ve all the ingredients for a great party; high quality catering, lively entertainment and excellent service.

    Enjoy a glass of Champagne on arrival then a fabulous three-course meal in the Centenary Suite before dancing the night away with our live band and disco.

    On the menu will be:

    • Lentil & Vegetable Soup or Duck and Orange Pate
    • Roast Turkey Tornadoes with trimmings or Roast Sirloin of Beef
    • Vegetarian option –  Roast Vegetable tartlet with Goats Cheese
    • White Chocolate & rum torte
    • Tea, coffee & Mints

    All this for an unbelievable £29.95 per person.

    We have five fabulous nights  available:

    • Saturday, 6th December
    • Friday, 12th December
    • Saturday, 13th December
    • Friday, 19th December
    • Saturday, 20th December

    Click here to book online.

    If you would rather not book online, phone the Commercial Team on 01698 338008 / 338062 or email commercial@motherwellfc.co.uk to secure your seat.

    £10 per person deposit to confirm booking. Non returnable after End of October, and cannot be used as part of full payment.

    Outstanding balance to be paid by 15th November.

  • Archive

    TV: Twardzik eyes derby success

    Goalkeeper Dan Twardzik hopes ‘Well can capitalise on recent results and progress in the League Cup tomorrow.

    The former Bayern Munich youngster, who also spent time with Karlsruher and Calcio Como in Italy, has played every minute for the Fir Parkers this season and has already enjoyed some highs and lows in his first few months.

    Now the Czech-born former German Youth International wants Motherwell to put recent Cup disappointments behind them when they face on-form Hamilton Accies at New Douglas Park tomorrow.

    [pullquote]Everyone in the dressing room is aware of just how important a game this is for the club and the fans.[/pullquote]

    “Everyone in the dressing room is aware of just how important a game this is for the club and the fans,” he told the press at Motherwell’s pre-match news conference.

    “Hamilton are flying at the moment and it would be great if we could beat them tomorrow.

    “I’ve been told, in recent years, Motherwell have had some problems in the Cups but there is always a time when you can change things like this.

    “Given this game is a derby and we can take confidence from recent results, now is the best time to do that.”

    MFC TV

  • Archive

    TV: McCall desperate for Cup showing

    Stuart McCall admits he would sacrifice league places if it meant he could bring silverware to Fir Park.

    The Steelmen have been ‘best of the rest’ in the Scottish top flight for the past three seasons, finishing third, second and second, but the form in knock-out competitions has been disappointing.

    The Fir Parkers now travel across the River Clyde for a tough tie against high-flying Hamilton Accies knowing a win would see safe passage through into the Quarter Finals.

    Speaking to the broadcast press at Motherwell’s pre-match news conference, the former Scotland midfielder smiled when asked if he would swap a Cup win for a lower league placing: “Yes, I would at this stage; lower in the league by a place, maybe!

    “No, seriously, we need to do our upmost to pick up in the league, we’ve had a few better results of late and when it comes to it, we absolutely want to be in that top six.

    “However, a Cup run and a bit of success to give the fans a trip to Hampden if possible is very high on our agenda.

    [pullquote]Been greedy, we would like to have them both but if I had to choose between giving up a couple of places and being really successful in the Cup, then I know what I would choose.”[/pullquote]

    McCall also admitted he is jealous Accies player-manager Alex Neil will be able to play in tomorrow’s derby.

    McCall has been involved in many derbies as a player, including the Old Firm and Merseyside, and he says he would have loved to have played been involved at New Douglas Park.

    “I’m actually envious of Alex because he can play in it and this is one game I would have been looking forward to playing in,” he said.

    “It’s a derby; it’s a massive game for both clubs, both sets of supporters and players. I’ve been fortunate enough to play in some big derbies Everton, Rangers, Sheffield United, Bradford and this game will mean as much to fans of Motherwell and Hamilton as any derby.

    “My first game as Motherwell manager was on New Year’s Day at Hamilton and I thought it was quite a mild and meek game for a derby, but I don’t think it will be like that tomorrow night. I think both sets of players will be really up for it.

    “This is probably the toughest tie we could have got.”

    MFC TV

  • Archive

    Charleston to officiate Cup clash

    Referee for Wednesday’s SPFL League Cup clash with Hamilton Accies is Craig Charleston.

    It will be Craig’s first ‘Well match of the season and only his third ever appointment in charge of the Steelmen.

    The last was back in August last year, when the Steelmen edged out Kilmarnock 2-1 at Fir Park. A Stephen McManus OG gave the Ayrshire side the lead but first-half strikes from Henri Anier and John Sutton handed McCall’s men all three points.

    The other moment of controversy was a red card for Simon Ramsden late in the game for a second bookable offence.

    His only ‘Well appointment was back in February 2012 – a dull and forgetful 0-0 draw with St Mirren in Paisley.

    It was a fairly comfortable afternoon for the 43-year old with the only moment of controversy being a denied penalty when Nicky Law went tumbling in the box, but it wasn’t given.

    He has been a top-flight referee since 2006/07 and, in that time, has handed a total of 169 matches. He has dished out 665 cautions (average of 3.9 per match) in that six-year period, sending off 45 (average of one red card every 3.7 matches).

    Ross Haswell will assist him on the night, alongside Stuart Hodge with Euan Anderson listed as fourth official.

  • Archive

    Helen Templeton’s Blog #3

     Follow ‘Dibsy’ on Twitter 

    Only having been at the club for such a short space of time, it is already abundantly clear to me the vision Motherwell FC has for the future.

    Player development is always at the forefront of the plans and with the wheels already in motion with the new £1.9 million building; girls and women’s football at the club has never looked more promising.

    The new performance development centre has many aims and objectives. First and foremost the centre looks to increase the number of females participating in game, starting at the early age of seven.

    With this in mind, the club will nurture individuals and develop the elite players of the future. The centre promises not only to enhance skills and playing abilities, but it also takes a more holistic approach, supporting not only football, but promises to support education alongside player welfare.

    How does this happen?

    Tutors are on site to help youngsters with their homework after school and before training sessions. A player welfare officer will also be appointed to ensure all performance centre participants are achieving their full potential both on and off the pitch.

    Motherwell will also offer career structures and employment opportunities within the Centre for talented players across administration, health and coaching roles. The centre will look to employ highly qualified coaches at every age group, to provide a long term player pathway from Under 7s right through to Under 15s.

    It will also have fully qualified physiotherapists, sports psychologists, sports nutritionists and sports scientists on hand. Players will not only have access to some of the best facilities around, but they will also receive the very best expertise available.

    An example from a day in the life of a performance centre participant includes being collected from school, being taken to the development centre where players will receive juice and snack after a hard day at the office! They will then complete any homework tasks they have been assigned from school with development centre tutors, including the use of online facilities and up to date computer technology.

    Players will then receive another snack and get down to the football side of things. For me as a child, this would have been the stuff dreams were made of! I wish I was 23 years younger!

    Although not yet in the new building, the development centre has already been up and running for two weeks and has been a huge success. However these things are easy for me to say, right? I thought I would try and speak to someone whose opinions really matter. I was lucky enough to chat with Leah Macpherson (7) from the Under 9s, who attends the development centre. I asked Leah what it was like, what she feels she has learned through the programme so far and why she loves it so much.

    “It’s great being part of the club and it’s really exciting. I look forward to training and games every week. I like having our own pitch where we can train. It can be challenging, but it’s still really enjoyable, the training more than doing my homework! I particularly like playing football, we do stretching and a warm-up too, which is not as much fun as playing, but we need to do it.”

    “Although doing my homework is not as much fun as playing football, I do like reading my books to coach Gibson. My favourite food from the snacks are apples and ham sandwiches. I have learned many things that will help me improve; when playing football we need to work as a team, concentrate and listen to our coaches”.

    Leah is clearly living the dream! I was keen to find out more so I asked Leah if she could pick one skill she would like to improve on and pick one player she would like to be like when she is older. “In the future I want to improve my keepie-uppies and one day I hope to play for Scotland just like Rachel Corsie, my favourite player.”

    Thanks for the interview Leah! It was a pleasure! A little birdie has also told me that already, at the young age of seven, Leah has received a Sportsmanship award and a signed Scotland top for encouraging not only her own team, but recognising strengths in other opposition players. What a fantastic and model attitude. Good luck for the future Leah and I’m sure one day, in the not too distant future, I might be cheering you on in a Scotland Ladies strip!

    Motherwell FC is so much more than just a football team. It’s a long-term development plan that has the player at the centre.

    A child attending the centre will not only benefit from through an increased range of ability as a player and improving fitness, but will also have their education at the heart as well as developing leadership skills, building self confidence, provide individuals with nutritional and injury prevention information, sports psychology sessions and injury prevention.

    If you would like more information regarding the performance centre Please call 01698 239926 or email community@motherwellfc.co.uk.

  • Archive

    TV: Highlights from Celtic Park

    Highlights from Celtic Park as John Sutton’s opener is cancelled out by a Kris Commons penalty.

    MFC TV

  • Archive

    Celtic draw in pictures

    Action pictures from this afternoon’s 1-1 draw with Celtic at Celtic Park.

    Snaps courtesy of SNSPix.

    [svgallery name=”celtic210914″]