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    Hibernian 4-1 Motherwell

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    TV: Highlights from Dumbarton

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    McGhee – Better conditions, better result

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    Dumbarton 1-2 Motherwell

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    Josh Law departs the club

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    Robinson departs for Oldham

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    ‘Well Bois inspire European chant

  • Archive

    New 2016/17 Macron Home / Third kit

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    Hibernian ticket information

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    Ten miles of team building

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    Hibernian 4-1 Motherwell

    In the final pre-season fixture before the League Cup takes off at home to Rangers, Mark McGhee’s men lost 4-1 away to Hibs.

    Tait, Heneghan, McHugh and Blyth all featured in the starting eleven together for the first time since they penned deals with the Fir Parkers.

    Scott McDonald got involed early on, when he collected the ball outside of the area but was dragged to the deck.

    And what a start to the game it was. From the resulting free-kick Marvin Johnson curled his strike over the wall and it crashed off the crossbar leaving the Hibs trialist goalkeeper no chance.

    But the lead didn’t last long as Hibs struck back instantly, with Martin Boyle tapping in from close range.

    In an exciting opening 6 minutes, the Steelmen almost took the lead again, but Lasley’s cross was struck over the bar from a corner.

    The game settled down just before the tenth minute, with Hibs keeping the ball in their own half, unable to cross the half-way line with the intense pressing of Mark McGhee’s team.

    Some neat defending from the ‘Well kept Hibs from taking the lead, and on the break, McManus sprayed a lovely ball out wide which was collected expertly by Tait, but his dangerous, curling cross from deep was a few yards ahead of Blyth and it ran out for a goal-kick.

    In the 18th minute, Hibs took the lead after Jason Cummings evaded the off-side trap to square the ball into the path of Holt, who finished past Samson.

    Motherwell looked hungry to bounce back though and won a corner in the 20th minute – McManus’ flicked header resulted in a brilliant finger-tip save from Hibs trialist stopper.

    Four minutes later, Hibs double their advantage, after a whipped cross was headed into the top corner by John McGinn.

    A dangerous ball across goal from Boyle was picked up by Fyvie, whose effort never looked to trouble Samson and went wide of the mark.

    Some strong hold-up play from Blyth allowed the centre-forwar to work a yard of space and fire a low-strike at goal, but the trialist made a good save.

    Motherwell maintained the pressure by winning a couple of corners, but Hibs scrambled clear to keep the score at 3-1 going into the final ten minutes of the half.

    A brilliant challenge from Ben Heneghan denied Jason Cummings what could’ve been an easy tap in for the striker.

    Some clever footwork from Scott McDonald in the box looked certain to lead to a goal for the Steelmen, but a good block denied the Aussie from silencing the home support.

    But it remained 3-1 to the Scottish cup winners going in to the half-time break, a score that didn’t reflect the good play from the Fir Parkers.

    ‘Well boss Mark McGhee didn’t make any changes at the break, but Hibs brought on Dylan McGeouch for Marvin Bartley.

    At the start of the second-half, a good save from Samson denied Hibs their fourth. In a blow, Jacob Blyth made way for Ainsworth after getting a bloodied nose from a corner in the 51st minute.

    Cummings the took the ball down six yards from goal, but his strike on goal flew over the bar and out for a goal-kick.

    Marvin Johnson looked to have injured himself after a mazy run led to a corner for the ‘Well, and McGhee took no chances, withdrawing the goal-scorer and replacing him with Allan Campbell after 60 minutes.

    Hibs made a change on the hour too; Cummings and Trialist goalkeeper made way for Keatings and Virtanen.

    Hibs did eventually make it four after a loose pass was picked up by Keatings, who curled a low shot in off the post in the 63rd minute.

    Dan Carmichael replaced John McGinn shortly after the 70th minute for the home side, and shortly after that Danny Handling came on for Grant Holt.

    Samson was called in to action again, but the stopper got a strong hand on Boyle’s effort, and Ben Heneghan cleared for the Fir Parkers.

    A trio of changes arrived in the shape of Thomas, Moore and Trialist, who came on to replace McDonald, Lasley and Cadden with ten minutes left

    There were few chances left in the match as Hibernian saw it out for the win.

    Motherwell: Samson; Tait, Hammell, Heneghan, McManus; McHugh, Lasley (Thomas ‘80); Johnson (Campbell ’60), McDonald (Moore ‘80), Cadden (Trialist ‘80); Blyth (Ainsworth ‘51)

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    TV: Highlights from Dumbarton

    Highlights from Cheaper Insurance Direct Stadium as Motherwell come from behind to beat Dumbarton 1-2.

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    McGhee – Better conditions, better result

    ‘Well boss Mark McGhee was happy with the attitude of his team as they won 2-1 away to Dumbarton.

    Goals from Moore and MacLean saw out the Steelmen’s second victory of pre-season.

    And the manager was very pleased with the playing conditions at the Cheaper Insurance Direct Stadium, describing the surface as a good testament to the ground staff.

    He said: “First thing I want to say is this is a tremendous pitch, and with good conditions here we didn’t have to deal with much wind and the rain made the pitch a little bit slicker, so I think we benefitted from that because I think so far in pre-season we’ve really been handicapped by the pitches we’ve been playing on.”

    New signing Carl McHugh made his first appearance for the Fir Parkers, and McGhee was very impressed.

    [pullquote]The general performance was good, in addition to winning the game, so yes we could’ve had more goals but lots of aspects with the performance were encouraging.[/pullquote]

    He said: “I was very pleased. I saw what I hoped he would bring to the squad and to the team; he breaks things down, he’s assured, he’s strong, he keeps the ball.

    “I made him captain in the first half because there was no one else to step up playing in the position that I could’ve done with – but that’s the quality of him and I think he’ll bring a lot to the squad.”

    On the score-line, the manager insisted it still isn’t the most important aspect of today.

    He said: “It’s not about the score it’s about the performance, for example we were playing well but they went ahead and on another day it could’ve ended 1-0.”

    He added: “The general performance was good, in addition to winning the game, so yes we could’ve had more goals but lots of aspects with the performance were encouraging.”

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    Dumbarton 1-2 Motherwell

    The Steelmen’s fourth pre-season fixture ended in a 2-1 win away to Championship side Dumbarton.

    A fairly young side took to the park at the Cheaper Insurance Direct stadium, with youngsters Allan Campbell, Jack McMillan and Ross MacLean among the starting eleven.

    Travelling fans got the opportunity to see new signing Carl McHugh make his first appearance in claret and amber – after making the switch from Plymouth Argyle on Tuesday.

    Dean Brill started in between the sticks and Ben Heneghan was among the substitutes for McGhee’s side.

    The opening goal of the day nearly came just a minute in, after some neat passing in the midfield led to Lionel Ainsworth making himself a yard of space and striking from outside the box – but his shot rose inches over the crossbar.

    And a few minutes later, the Fir Parkers fancied their chances from range again. This time, Ross MacLean’s shot on target deflected behind for a corner.

    Somehow Motherwell didn’t make the breakthrough after a neat flick and strike from Moult rebounded off the bar and into the path of Thomas, who lashed his strike off the post as well.

    McHugh, who had slotted in to the side and was comfortable in possession, had his first strike on goal, but it flew over the crossbar and it remained goalless after 12 minutes.

    Dean Brill’s first task was a fairly simple one, after a weak header made its way towards his far corner, but it was an easy one to collect for the keeper.

    McHugh did well to win the ball in the middle of the park, but Thomas was caught in possession by Smith, who had an ambitious strike from range that spun wide off target.

    A low strike from Grant Gallagher forced a good save from Brill who turned it round his post to keep it level after 20 minutes.

    Two minutes later, Andrew Sterling cut inside McMillan and curled his strike on goal, but Dean Brill pulled off a wonder save to tip the ball over the bar.

    But the new signings clean sheet didn’t last long after a Dumbarton corner was only cleared as far as the edge of the box. The ball was headed back in towards goal and some smart creativity from Robert Thomson to leap and connect with the overhead kick from close range arrowed it past Brill.

    The Steelmen were peppering the goal with strikes from outside the box, as Dom Thomas’ effort deflected behind for another corner.

    A great move around the edge of the Dumbarton box fell to Louis Moult, but his curling shot flew high over the bar.

    Play came to a halt on the 34th minute after what looked to be a clash of heads resulted in a Dumbarton player making way.

    Some great defending from Wright denied MacLean the opportunity of getting on the end of a great delivery from Joe Chalmers on the left.

    It remained 1-0 to Dumbarton going in to the break and McGhee made four changes at the break, with McHugh, Kennedy, Moult and Ainsworth making way for Moore, Trialist, Hastie and Heneghan.

    Heneghan missed a difficult chance at the back post from a corner, but immediately turned and curled a cross on to the head of Moore, who’s header was saved by Ewings, who replaced Brown at half-time for the home side.

    It was all Motherwell in the opening ten minutes of the second half, as a brilliant lofted ball over the defence found McMillan whose low cross was spilled by Ewings and Dumbarton somehow kept their lead.

    A few minutes later, Joe Chalmers put in another great cross, but Dumbarton knocked it behind for a corner.

    On the hour mark, Dom Thomas fired low on goal but it didn’t trouble Ewings – and at the other end Brill was forced to turn the ball behind after a tricky strike skipped off the surface.

    Three minutes later and Motherwell drew level.

    A pinpoint ball from the half-way line over the defence from Ben Heneghan was met by a strong header from Moore whose effort came crashing back off the woodwork into the path of MacLean who stabbed it home.

    On the 73rd minute, Luke Watt and a Trialist replaced Allan Campbell and Dom Thomas.

    And three minutes later, the Fir Parkers took the lead after a mix-up between Ewings and Pettigrew about 30 yards out left Craig Moore with an open goal and he dribbled casually to tap in.

    A good chance for Dumbarton went begging, as a great delivery from the left evaded everyone in the box and trickled out for a goal-kick.

    With ten minutes left, a fire alarm halted play and the fans had to evacuate the stand. Five minutes later play resumed and ‘Well boss Mark McGhee made another couple of changes, with Mackin and another Trialist replacing McMillan and MacLean.

    But with next to no time left on the clock, that was the last real action of the match as Motherwell grabbed their second victory of pre-season before facing Hibs tomorrow afternoon at Easter Road.

    Motherwell: Brill, McMillan (Trialist – 85mins), Chalmers, Ferguson, Kennedy (Heneghan – 46mins), Campbell (Trialist – 72mins), Ainsworth (Hastie – 46mins), McHugh (Trialist – 46mins), Moult (Moore – 46mins), Thomas (Watt – 72mins), MacLean (Mackin – 85mins)

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    Josh Law departs the club

    Motherwell FC can today confirm Josh Law has left the club to join English League One side Oldham Athletic.

    Law, who has been a regular in the Fir Park first team over the last two years, playing 73 matches, approached the management team at the tail end of the 2015/16 season and asked to leave due to personal / family circumstances.

    Motherwell FC agreed to this request and, after agreeing personal terms, the 26-year old has joined up with former ‘Well assistant Stephen Robinson, who was named manager at Boundary Park earlier today.

    Law said: “It was a hugely difficult decision I had to make, but my request to leave was purely a family issue as I’ve loved my time in Scotland, loved playing for the manager and with the group of lads at Fir Park.

    [pullquote]“I also want to thank everyone at the club for the way they’ve handled the situation and to the fans who have been so good to me during my two years.[/pullquote]

    “I wish the club nothing but the best and hope to be back soon visiting when the chance allows it.”

    ‘Well boss Mark McGhee added: “We were obviously aware Josh was unlikely to be with us this season, which is why we recruited Richard Tait when we did.

    “The situation Josh faced personally was a difficult one, and we were sympathetic with his wish to be closer to home.”

    Everyone at Motherwell FC would like to thank Josh for his two seasons in Claret and Amber and wish him every success in his future career.

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    Robinson departs for Oldham

    Motherwell FC can today confirm Assistant Stephen Robinson has left the club to take up the vacant managerial post at Oldham Athletic.

    Robinson, 41, initially joined the club in February of 2015, initially as Assistant to then boss Ian Baraclough.

    The former Bournemouth and Luton Town winger played a huge part in helping the club retain its SPFL Premiership status that season, then, working alongside Mark McGhee, contributed to the return to the top six in 2015/16.

    Robinson also worked with his native Northern Irish and was at the UEFA Euro 2016 Championship, assisting the side into the ‘Last 16’ of the tournament.

    The clubs was reluctant to lose Steve, but absolutely respect his wish and ambition to be a manager and therefore granted permission for the English League One club to start negotiations at the tail end of last weekend.

    [pullquote]it’s an important appointment and I’ll take my time to consider all the different aspects before offering the job[/pullquote]

    Those discussions concluded with Robinson being offered the job, which he subsequently accepted.

    ‘Well boss Mark McGhee said: “Whilst it is disappointing to lose Steve, we understand this was a great opportunity for him.

    “I said just last week that you can become a victim of your own success in a sense; that if and when you appoint talented, ambitious people, there’s a high probability that others who have deeper pockets come and take them away.

    “That means the challenge for us is to find someone else as talented and as ambitious and start the whole process again, and that’s exactly what we’ll do.

    “That all being said, it’s an important appointment and I’ll take my time to consider all the different aspects before offering the job.”

    Everyone at Motherwell FC would like to sincerely thank Steve for his tremendous contribution and wish him every success in his future career.

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    ‘Well Bois inspire European chant

    As France sealed their place in the European Championship final last night, the ripples could be felt 1,150 miles away.

    When the referee blew the final whistle on the home nations 2-0 victory over Germany in Marseille, the French players stood in front of their boisterous fans and conducted a celebration that has surged in popularity over the past month.

    With their arms stretched wide above their heads, Antoine Griezmann and his teammates, together with thousands of supporters, conducted the thunderous ‘Viking clap’.

    Known as the ‘Huh’, or ‘Hoo’, the celebration consists of players and fans chanting and clapping in unison – starting slowly before increasing in pace to the point where a wall of constant clapping and noise ensues.

    France used it last night; Wales used it on Friday when they beat Belgium; and the winner on Sunday will likely use it too.

    But the battle cry was made famous by the tiny nation of Iceland, whose success story captured the hearts of football fans around the world.

    Their near-intimidating post-match celebration has becoming a viral sensation and a popular choice for a number of nations competing at the Euros.

    However, the underdog quarter-finalists took inspiration for their chant (see below), and that inspiration was Motherwell Football Club.

    Back in 2014, the Fir Parkers clashed with Icelandic side Stjarnan in the Europa League qualifiers and the fearsome chant was conducted by the ‘Well fans in front of an impressed travelling support.

    However, Stjarnan’s Europa League experience was short lived as Inter Milan put them to the sword in a two-legged 9-0 defeat, so the supporters took their chant to the national side, who had been enjoying far greater success and surprised everyone when they made it to the quarter-finals this summer.

    The chant has now taken its place as one of the most iconic highlights of Euro 2016, and is destined to be a regular feature at football grounds across the globe.

    Today, on the morning following France’s use of the celebration, a top Icelandic radio station decided to get in touch with us to talk about the “Huh”.

    Office assistant Stacey Callaghan took the call and spoke live on air, admitting the call came as a surprise.

    She said: “I didn’t realise I was going live on air at first, and I thought it might have been a prank.

    “But they asked me about the origin of the chant so I told them about the ‘Well Bois and how they use it on match days, and the guy on the radio loved it.”

    She added: “They wished the club all the best for the season and I made sure to congratulate them on their success at the Euros.”

    With the European Championships drawing to a close this weekend, the surge of the Viking chant is only just beginning.

    Once it was a celebration used by Motherwell Football club and the ‘Well boys, but now it is being used by the biggest football stars on the planet, on the biggest stage of all.

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    New 2016/17 Macron Home / Third kit

    Motherwell Football Club is delighted to showcase the new Macron home and special edition third kits for season 2016/17.

    It will be Motherwell’s third with Italian manufacturers Macron and first with new principal sponsor Motorpoint, the UK’s largest independent car retailer who operate from eleven different locations including just a few miles along the M74 from Fir Park at Mount Vernon.

    After last year’s switch to the diagonal band, the club returns to the traditional amber top with claret hoop. There is also a return of amber shorts, the first time since the 2012/13 when ‘Well finished runners-up in the last ever season of the Scottish Premier League.

    The limited edition third kit pays tribute to the 25th anniversary of the ’91 Cup win, with the each of the participating players’ names such as Kirk, O’Neill, Arnott, Cooper, O’Donnell and others infused into the top, and the commemorative badge celebrating one of the clubs’ greatest ever triumphs.

    The kits will be available either with or without the sponsors and can be pre-ordered from www.motherwelldirect.co.uk now! The home kit will be available from Tuesday 19th July with the third kit launched on Tuesday 26th July. The new ‘away’ kit will be showcased and launched shortly.

    Chief Operating Officer Alan Burrows commented: “We’re delighted to showcase the first two of three kits this year and are delighted to welcome Motorpoint as our new principal sponsor.

    “Over the last few years, we’ve grown our relationship with Motorpoint and delighted they’ve expanded their portfolio from the shorts to the shirt.

    “In addition, we would like to sincerely thank everyone at Cash Converters who were our loyal sponsors for five seasons, one of the longest-standing partnerships in Scottish football and we very much look forward to continue working with them in different areas of the club.”

    Adam Gilmore, General Manager of Motorpoint Glasgow, said: “Motorpoint is delighted to become the Official Club sponsor of Motherwell Football Club.

    “We have formed a great partnership with the Steelmen since 2010, both on and off the field, and the opportunity for the Motorpoint logo to appear on the first team shirt is a hugely exciting and high profile development for the company and one that we look forward to building upon over the coming 2016-17 season as we continue to establish Motorpoint as the car buyers champion in Scotland.”

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    Hibernian ticket information

    Fans should note tickets for Sunday’s friendly match against Hibs can be purchased in advance from the Fir Park ticket office.

    Alternatively, tickets will be available from the ticket office at Easter Road on the day of the game from 2pm.

    Kick-off is 3pm and tickets are priced at:

    ADULTS:   £10
    CONCESSIONS:                           £5
    • Concessions are listed as Over 65s and under 16s
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    Ten miles of team building

    Mark McGhee and the players and staff of Motherwell continued their pre-season preparations yesterday with a ten-mile cycle from Auchinstarry to the Falkirk Wheel, in partnership with Outdoortrax.

    As well as being a good work-out for the players, the cycle also served as a good recuperation exercise after a busy schedule of fixtures.

    ‘Well boss Mark McGhee felt the change of scenery was important for the squad.

    He said: “We brought the lads out for a change from running, obviously with the matches at the weekend and [Tuesday] night, and we’re just going to do a ten mile cycle.

    “It’s not a fitness exercise, it’s more of a recovery from the game, and [on Thursday] we’ll go back to training and we’ll be back in to the hard stuff – there will be a lot of running.”

    [pullquote]It’s not a fitness exercise, it’s more of a recovery from the game, and [on Thursday] we’ll go back to training and we’ll be back in to the hard stuff – there will be a lot of running.[/pullquote]

    The manager explained that the ten mile cycle can be a good way for the new signings to settle in.

    He added: “There’s one or two new lads and we don’t really know their characters yet, so maybe today will bring them out a bit, make them feel more comfortable and a bit more part of the group.”

    ‘Well captain Keith Lasley believed it was a good exercise for the team.

    The 36-year-old said: “It certainly was a change of scenery and it was a little bit of a different recovery session along here, it’s good to get all the boys together on the bikes something we don’t do often and it gets us away from Dalziel for a day.

    “I think anytime you can do something and get all the boys together and it’s something different, it’s good.

    “And it gives the boys that have come up from England a chance to see a bit of Scotland I suppose and see an iconic landmark too.”