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    Society sound the rallying call

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    Robertson to take Fir Park bow

  • Archive

    Erwin wins monthly award

  • Archive

    BLOG: An update from the Chairman #1

  • Archive

    Inverness CT U20s 1 – 4 Motherwell U20s

  • Archive

    TV: Highlights from Dingwall

  • Archive

    TV: Baraclough urges togetherness

  • Archive

    Ross County defeat in pictures

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    Ross County 3 – 2 Motherwell

  • Archive

    TV: McManus up for starting battle

  • Archive

    Society sound the rallying call

    In the last three weeks, Motherwell Football Club has undergone major change.

    The financial injection from Les Hutchison and ‘Well Society members has saved the club from either the uncertainty of foreign ownership or extremely serious financial danger.

    Since then, a number of new initiatives and improvements have begun off the field, as detailed in the Chairman’s blog on Wednesday. On the park, the club has made seven new signings to help an injury-ravaged squad out of their predicament at the foot of the Scottish Premiership. Those signings could not have been made without the recent financial input and were made to protect our top-flight status.

    Now, we need the wider Motherwell support to back the developments and buy into the ethos of a community-centred football club. The best way to start is by getting along to Fir Park for tomorrow’s massive game against Dundee, the first of three consecutive home matches. For financial reasons, and to help the team get out of trouble, we need a bigger support than recent games.

    What we are asking you as individuals to do is to get along yourself and to actively encourage others to attend. If every ‘Well Society member encourages a friend, the crowd will be boosted by more than 1,200. This is where the collective strength of a fan-based club can come into play.

    We have had many memorable days in recent years – a Scottish Cup final, Champions League qualifiers, last season’s second-place decider at Pittodrie, numerous European trips to the likes of France, Spain and Wales. There were 17,000 Well fans at Hampden for the cup final. We need them more than ever now, over the next three games.

    Only Celtic and Aberdeen fans have enjoyed top-flight football longer than Motherwell supporters. That proud record cannot be maintained without the odd battle against the drop. This is one of those battles, and it comes at a time when the club needs everyone’s financial backing.

    That’s why we need everyone to get behind the club and the players, many of whom have helped us enjoy good times in recent years, some of whom are young guys starting out in the game, others who will be making their home debuts.

    Please do your bit by boosting the crowd over the next three games, whatever way you can, starting tomorrow against Dundee.

    The Society and the Football Club. Together we are stronger.

  • Archive

    Robertson to take Fir Park bow

    Referee for this Saturday’s SPFL Premiership match against Dundee at Fir Park is Donald Robertson.

    There will be a bit of history made as Saturday’s game is not only the first time Don has handled a senior match at Fir Park, but his first ever in charge of the Steelmen.

    He is a little more familiar with our opponents today though, having handled their 1-3 defeat to St Mirren back in late December as well as two Scottish Championship matches last term, a pair of 0-2 away wins at Raith Rovers and Livingston respectively.

    Don has officiated in the senior game for the last four years, but only made his Premiership berth this season; his first match in the top flight being Inverness’ 0-2 away win at Hamilton on the opening day.

    He has subsequently handed another five matches at McDiarmid Park, St Mirren Park, Rugby Park and that aforementioned Saints win on Tayside two months ago.

    He has also been the man in the middle for big Championship games at Tynecastle, Ibrox as well as Hibernian’s trip to Starks Park, three Scottish Cup fixtures including the recent draw between Spartans and Berwick Rangers and Hibs’ late comeback win against Dumbarton in the League Cup.

    The whistler had the tragic misfortune to handle the Morton versus Queen of the South match at Cappielow last season where a long-standing fan sadly passed away during the game, forcing the match to be abandoned. To his credit, the young referee drew widespread praise for his handling of those difficult circumstances.

    Don has handled 97 Scottish professional matches in his four years. In those matches, he has booked 74 players and sent off just five. He has given three eight penalty kicks over his four-year stint, interestingly almost half of them coming this season in the SPFL Premiership.

    Willie Conquer and Raymond White will run the line and George Salmon is on fourth official duties. Referee Observer is Gerry Evans with Tim Love as SPFL Delegate.

  • Archive

    Erwin wins monthly award

    Motherwell club sponsor Cash Converters is delighted to announce that young striker Lee Erwin has won the Player of the Month award for January.

    The Steelmen played six games during January and despite only picking up one point, Erwin shone in his six apppearances, always looking lively and dangerous, especially in his two starts against Dundee Utd and St Johnstone.

    The Player of the Month is voted for by the ‘Well fans on Cash Converters’ official SPFL Facebook page and Lee was handed the trophy by fan Lee Anthony.

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

  • Archive

    BLOG: An update from the Chairman #1

    Fellow fans, sponsors and residents of the area,

    I would like to provide you with an update on what is happening in and around the club and the progress we have made in the last fortnight or so.

    As you probably know, the deal to transition the majority shareholding in Motherwell FC from Mr John Boyle to Mr Les Hutchison was completed on Friday 30 January with agreements in place to move to fan ownership within five years if we achieve certain objectives.

    We have established three board sub-committees to take action on the agreed business plan with each member of the board having an individual portfolio of responsibility.

    Football Committee

    Chaired by Derek Weir with new board members Ian Reid and Peter Kellie, the key objectives of the committee are to raise additional revenue in the transfer market and help the club remain in the SPFL Premiership.

    They have already appointed a new Head of Recruitment, set out a scouting organisation to cover Scotland, Ireland and parts of England. The new scouting team will be using Scout 7 software to help manage their activity. We will explain in a bit more detail about this hugely positively development in the coming days when everything is ratified.

    After a review of the recent spate of injuries, it was clear that better training and conditioning was required and a new physical conditioning specialist, who is based at Stirling University, will be recruited together with the addition of stretching and yoga programmes which will significantly reduce the number and seriousness of injuries. A new assistant manager, Steve Robinson, has been appointed who has experience of the new programmes now in place.

    The committee approved a number of new signings during the January transfer period to support the Manager in his efforts to remain in the Scottish top flight. I can assure you the Manager, his staff and players are working extremely hard to achieve this objective.

    Finance Committee

    Chaired by Jim McMahon with new board member Leanne Thomas and myself. The committee have already introduced a new financial reporting system which will allow results to be known five days after the end of each month compared with the previous 4 to 6 weeks.

    In addition, better forecasting techniques are being introduced to allow better financial planning. An additional part time member of staff is being employed to support the improvements.

    Sales and Marketing Committee

    Chaired by myself with Alan Burrows, Robert Montgomery and Doug Inglis. They have identified the need for a dedicated sales and marketing manager with interviews taking place this week. Work has commenced on working with the MFC Community Trust to secure grant funding to create a Motherwell FC museum which will include lots of FC memorabilia but also pictures and information on the local area.

    The objective of the committee is to increase revenue from the Function Rooms, matchdays, better use of the various stands and other club assets.

    This is where you play your part!

    Starting with the next three home games, I would ask you to bring a friend to a game, help us raise the much needed funds to achieve our objectives but also support the team during the crucial stage of the season.

    Give the Club a call on 01698 338012 and book your next function which we will do everything we can to make sure is a great success.

    The Community Trust continues to do fantastic work with school kids, teens, woman and retired folks like me. They have worked with over 35,000 people in the local community. You should be rightly proud to be associated with the most successful community organisation in Scotland. To help this great work, Les Hutchison has donated over £30,000 toward a new programme to assist teens into work.

    As you can see, it has been hugely busy time and a lot has been achieved in less than three weeks. We have plans in place and lots of other areas are bubbling away out of the spotlight. It’s an exciting time at the club and we feel we are making great strides off the park. I sincerely hope that feel-good factor can be translated onto the pitch.

    To you, the fans, I wish to convey my thanks for your continued support for the players and manager who are working very hard to secure our continued presence in the top flight. Despite recent disappointing results they remain upbeat, fully committed and optimistic that they can move up the league in the weeks ahead.

    I would like to make a special mention of the Well ‘Bois’. They continue to provide a touch of magic at games with their choreographed singing and clapping. Last Saturday they travelled in goodly numbers to Dingwall and I was most impressed by their new song, Twist and Shout, which added a bit extra colour and volume to the proceedings. I know the players and manager are most grateful for and appreciate their contributions.

    I would like also to publicly pay tribute to them for organising the food bank for local people at a recent home game. They are a credit to the local community and fully deserve its thanks.

    We also hope you can join the Well Society, or if you area already a member, upgrade your membership to allow it to support the club financially and help it repay the 5-year loan.

    The Society is finalising the details of a membership revamp that will completely transform the way we engage with members and how fans can play their part, regardless of their circumstances. Every single Motherwell fan has a part to play in this journey. Together, we can make our club the best fan-owned, community focused, and fully engaged entity in Scotland.

    The hard work continues apace…….. We need your help!

    Brian McCaffery
    Chairman

  • Archive

    Inverness CT U20s 1 – 4 Motherwell U20s

    Motherwell U20s continued their unbeaten start to 2015 with a comfortable 4-1 win over Inverness CT this afternoon.

    First half goals from Steven Higgins and Craig Moore had the Steelmen in cruise control before Ross MacLean added a third early in the second half.

    Liam Polworth pulled one back as Thistle searched for a way back into the game but with twenty minutes left, Dom Thomas sealed the three points with a fine individual effort.

    Jonatan Johansson made three changes to the side that fought back to earn a point against Hibs fourteen days ago. Danny McNulty, Dylan Mackin and trialist Paul George dropped out, replaced in the starting eleven by Craig McCall, Craig Moore and Luke Watt.

    The young Steelmen had drawn their other two games of 2015 and signalled their intent to grab all three points in the twelfth minute when Chris Cadden shot from 25 yards hit a deflection and came crashing off the bar, much to Caley’s relief.

    Eight minutes later ‘Well made eventually the breakthrough and it’s not one young Daniel Hoban in the Caley goals will want to see again.

    Steven Higgins tried his luck from the edge of the box and watched on as the ball agonisingly flew through keeper’s hands and trickled over the line.

    Caley huffed and puffed but failed to trouble Stewart in the ‘Well goals and were eventually broken down again.

    Higgins slid in Moore, who with very little in the way of options, deliciously scooped the ball over the onrushing Hoban from twenty yards to give ‘Well a commanding 2-0 lead going into the break.

    They continued the second 45 in the same vein and within eight minutes were 3-0 up. Thomas jinked in from the right and got a shot away which somehow Hoban spilled, allowing MacLean to tap in from five yards, showing good awareness to follow Thomas’ shot in.

    ‘Well were in total control when, almost out of the blue, Caley pulled one back in the 61st minute. Polworth found his way through the defence and slid the ball past Stewart. It was a rare lapse in concentration in the ‘Well defence, possibly switching off after having virtually nothing to do for the previous.

    Any hopes of a home comeback were dashed with with 20 minutes to go when ‘Well killed the game in style.

    Thomas picked the ball up 40 yards out and showed great feet to jink past two Caley defenders. He played a neat one-two with Cadden and cooly finished past Hoban to make it 4-1 and send the Steelmen home with all three points.

    Motherwell: Stewart, Watt, McMillan, McCall, Hall, Ferguson, Higgins, Cadden (Campbell, 81), Moore (Mackin, 75), D.Thomas (Anderson, 85), MacLean

    Unused subs: McNulty, Leitch, Watters

  • Archive

    TV: Highlights from Dingwall

     Extended highlights from Global Energy Stadium as Motherwell go down 3-2 to Ross County in the SPFL Premiership.

     

    MFC TV

  • Archive

    TV: Baraclough urges togetherness

    ‘Well boss Ian Baraclough has urged everyone to stick together as ‘Well try and get themselves out of the relegation mire.

    The Steelmen currently side in eleventh spot, seven behind Partick Thistle in ninth, level with St Mirren in tenth and three ahead of bottom club County.

    Only the Staggies were victorious this afternoon, making the whole thing even tighter at the foot.

    The Fir Park boss: “If we do stick together and support each other I’m sure we’ll make it through. It’s not going to be an easy time; it’s not going to be all plain sailing.

    [pullquote]If we do stick together and support each other I’m sure we’ll make it through. It’s not going to be an easy time; it’s not going to be all plain sailing.[/pullquote]

    “You are going to get the knocks, and you are going to get disappointments. It’s how you deal with the disappointments as a collective. Not just the players, not just the staff, but everybody.”

    On his new players, he added: “It was young Conor Grant’s first start in senior football. I thought he handled it very well – he’s going to be an exceptional player. I’m really pleased we’re going to be helping him through that early development period.

    “Nathan Thomas and Marvin Johnson are two wide men, two quick men. They’ll soon get up to speed with the pace of the Scottish game, and they’ll make an impact for sure.

    “George Long was very commanding. He couldn’t do anything about the three goals, but he certainly took charge of his penalty box and his back four, and pulled off some great saves first-half.

    “All the new lads were a credit to themselves.”

    MFC TV

  • Archive

    Ross County defeat in pictures

    Action pictures from today’s 3-2 SPFL Premiership defeat by Ross County at Fir Park.

    Snaps courtesy of SNSPix.

    [svgallery name=”rosscounty140215″]

  • Archive

    Ross County 3 – 2 Motherwell

    [tab:Match report]

    Phil McGhee at Global Energy Stadium

    Motherwell lost narrowly to Ross County in an action-packed afternoon at the Global Energy Stadium.

    Jim McIntyre’s side took the lead in the first half through Martin Woods but new-signing Conor Grant brought ‘Well level with a stunning free kick.

    Paul Quinn put County back in front before Raffaele De Vita made it 3-1. Fraser Kerr pulled one back but it wasn’t enough as the hosts held on for the three points.

    ‘Well made six changes to the side that drew with St Johnstone and the team in all white made a bright start to the game, Lee Erwin in particular, and he did well to cut in on the left flank only for his shot to be deflected wide for a corner.

    A minute later, the same player latched on to a loose ball on the edge of the box but smashed his low shot narrowly wide of Mark Brown’s left hand post.

    County grew into the match and Craig Curran prodded a header wide but it would be ‘Well who would have the first shot on target.

    Stephen McManus sent Thomas scampering away down the right after the former Plymouth mad had left Reckord on his backside. Closing down on goal, the winger’s low shot was held by Brown at the second attempt.

    County hit back almost immediately and the Steelmen had ‘keeper Long to thank for two stunning saves, the first from Staggies’ Northern Irish frontman Liam Boyce and the other from Scott Boyd, who both fired stinging shots from distance.

    However, the on-loan Sheffield United stopper was helpful to keep out the next attack as the hosts took the lead through Martin Woods. The midfielder played a one-two with De Vita before finding the corner of the net with a superb left-foot volley.

    The home side had a chance to double their lead a couple of minutes later when Boyce got on the end of a Woods free kick but failed to finish.

    ‘Well should have got themselves on level terms before the break when Fraser Kerr twice headed into the arms of Brown from set-pieces.

    County had another good chance to extend their lead in the 47th minute when Jackson Irvine got on the end of Woods’ corner but, with the goal at his mercy, he headed well over.

    Motherwell did eventually draw level and it was a cracker from midfielder Conor Grant. It was the Evertonian himself who won the free kick in a dangerous position when Reckord tripped him on the edge of the area. The 19-year old took the kick himself and curled the ball in at Brown’s near post.

    Frustratingly, County restored their advantage inside six minutes and it was former ‘Well man Paul Quinn who put his side ahead. Raffaele De Vita floated a free kick towards the far end of the box and Quinn nipped in between Kerr and Reid to send a header looping into the far corner.

    It went from bad to terrible shortly after when De Vita added a third, carefully watching Michael Gardyne cross ball fly over the head of Reid before controlling a stinging volley past Long, leaving the big Englishman completely helpless.

    To their credit, Baraclough’s men refused to lie down and set-up a grandstand last fifteen minutes when Fraser Kerr headed home Grant’s whipped corner.

    However, County saw out the game, remaining resolute at the back and keeping possession deep in the ‘Well half to eventually see the game out and send a dejected visitors down the A9 pointless.

    [tab:As it happened]

     Ally Reilly at Global Energy Stadium

    FT: Ross County 3 – 2 Motherwell #RCFCvMFC

    4 minutes added on. #RCFCvMFC

    87mins: Motherwell sub, Grant off for Ainsworth #RCFCvMFC

    83mins: Ross County sub, Kiss is on for Gardyne #RCFCvMFC

    80mins: Ramsden is booked for a tackle on Boyce. County have a free-kick in a similar position where they scored #RCFCvMFC

    78mins: Fraser KERR heads home Grant’s corner! 3-2 now….

    78mins: Johnson forces a ‘Well corner….GOAL!!

    77mins: Dingwall booked for a late tackle on Reid #RCFCvMFC

    71mins: Ross County sub, De Vita off for Dingwall #RCFCvMFC

    69mins: Fraser enters the refs book – Cautioned for a challenge on Johnson #RCFCvMFC

    251 ‘Well fans have made the journey up. As always, your wonderful support is greatly appreciated #RCFCvMFC

    65mins: Motherwell sub, Lasley off for Moore #RCFCvMFC

    64mins: De Vita booked for a tackle on Reid #RCFCvMFC

    63mins: Goal – It’s 3-1. Another volley, this time De Vita smashing home from 15 yards

    59mins: Motherwell sub, N. Thomas is off for Johnson #RCFCvMFC

    59mins: Goal – Paul Quinn nods County into the lead from a deep free-kick. 2-1 #RCFCvMFC

    55mins: Irvine booked for hacking down Erwin, wide on the left. Free-kick in a decent area…Grant’s delivery is swept clear by Irvine

    53mins: It’s the new boy, Conor GRANT, who curls in a beauty of a free-kick. What a goal!! 1-1 #RCFCvMFC

    53mins: Grant shows some good footwork to earn a free-kick about 20 yards out…..GGOOAALLLL!!!

    46mins: Incredibly Irvine has a free header from a corner yet somehow fails to hit the target from 10 yards #RCFCvMFC

    Second half is underway, no changes for either side #RCFCvMFC

    HT: Ross County 1 – 0 Motherwell #RCFCvMFC

    44mins: Yet again Kerr wins a header from a corner but it is too tame to bother Brown #RCFCvMFC

    41mins: From that corner, Kerr wins the header but it is straight at Brown #RCFCvMFC

    41mins: Grant’s corner is aimed at Kerr who is only just beaten to it by Irvine who heads out for a corner #RCFCvMFC

    38mins: Erwin wins ‘Well a corner, Grant swings it in but again Brown is on hand to mop up the danger #RCFCvMFC

    35mins: Woods swings in a deep free-kick which finds Boyce in the box but his effort doesn’t trouble Long #RCFCvMFC

    34mins: Goal – Wodds puts County in the lead, with a stunner of a volley after a one-two with Boyce #RCFCvMFC

    31mins: ‘Well free-kick wide on the right, Grant delivers…Brown gather comfortably #RCFCvMFC

    28mins: Two fantastic saves from Long in the space of a minute :O Spectacularly tipping over from Boyce twice! #RCFCvMFC

    27mins: McManus sends Thomas racing clear and Brown has to make a good save to deny him as he shot from 20 yards #RCFCvMFC

    25mins: After quite an explosive first five minutes, the game has quietened down a little. Not a lot to talk about right now #RCFCvMFC

    16mins: De Vita twists and turns inside the ‘Well box and gets a cross in which Long plucks out the air #RCFCvMFC

    8mins: Another Motherwell corner….taken short again but Thomas is crowded out and can’t deliver the cross #RCFCvMFC

    3mins: Erwin looking lively! Finds some space 25 yards out and gets a volley away which sails just past the post #RCFCvMFC

    1min: Erwin cuts inside from the left and his shot is nodded wide for a corner. ‘Well work a short on but is headed clear.

    Boyce and Irvine kick the game off. COYW! #RCFCvMFC

    Out come the teams then. A big 90 minutes ahead for both sides… #RCFCvMFC

    [tab:Reaction]

    Motherwell manager Ian Baraclough:

    “If we do stick together and support each other I’m sure we’ll make it through. It’s not going to be an easy time, it’s not going to be all plain sailing.

    “You are going to get the knocks, and you are going to get disappointments. It’s how you deal with the disappointments as a collective. Not just the players, not just the staff, but everybody.”

    Ross County manager Jim McIntyre:

    “What especially pleased me was the way we started the match. I thought we were on the front foot right from the off and put them under severe pressure.

    “Both our wide players were getting crosses in at every opportunity. Motherwell’s centre backs will know they’ve been in a game because our two were a real handful.

    “The way we wanted to go about it was exactly the way it panned out.

    “And it’s a great shot in the arm for the boys in terms of confidence levels. The dressing room was a very happy place after the game. It’s important, though, we remember it is just one result.”

    [tab:Man-of-the-match]

    [poll id=”220″]

  • Archive

    TV: McManus up for starting battle

    Stephen McManus thinks fighting for a spot in the team should motivate the Motherwell squad.

    With injuries decimating the first half of the 2014/15 campaign, it has often been the eleven fittest players who have been selected for matchdays.

    However, with the addition of seven new recruits during the January transfer window, the emergence of the exciting young talent at the club and some of the injuries starting to clear up, ‘Well boss Ian Baraclough now has some big decisions to make in positions all across the park.

    Former Scotland International McManus, who himself has recovered from a knee injury which kept him out the St Johnstone match, says there is a real hunger in the dressing room to be amongst the starting eleven.

    [pullquote]You’ve got to relish and accept the challenge and try to ensure you’re the one who is playing. Competition for places is always healthy.[/pullquote]

    He said: “The fact we have some real quality additions has given the squad a real freshness.

    “Because we’ve added new faces obviously does not mean all our problems are solved and we’re going to win every match. Some guys will take time to settle in, others will hit the ground running.

    “What it has given us though is a real battle for places. Obviously a few guys have managed to get off the treatment table too, so there are options, something we’ve perhaps not had here in quite some time.

    “That’s a challenge to everyone who was here. You’ve got to relish and accept the challenge and try to ensure you’re the one who is playing. Competition for places is always healthy.”

    MFC TV