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    McHugh – Rangers a great test

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    McGhee – We’ll be in right frame of mind

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    McLean in charge of Rangers clash

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    Moult – I’ll play if I get the green light

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    Motorpoint announced as new principal sponsor

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    Rangers Ticket information

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    TV: Highlights from Easter Road

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    McGhee – We were off the pace

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    Hibernian 4-1 Motherwell

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    TV: Highlights from Dumbarton

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    McHugh – Rangers a great test

    ‘Well new boy Carl McHugh believes the BetFred League Cup match against Rangers will be a good indicator  for the squad.

    Sitting in the Motherwell press area for the first time since his switch from Plymouth Argyle, the 23-year-old spoke about his opposition for his first competitive fixture in Claret and Amber.

    The midfielder said: “Obviously it’ll be great to test yourself against teams like [Rangers]. They’ll be very strong and you’d expect them to be right up there this season when you look at some of the signings they’ve made, so it’s a great test for us.”

    But McHugh added: “It’s very early in season the league doesn’t start for a few more weeks and that’s the main priority; being ready for the league. But it’s a massive game for us and it will give us a good yardstick of where we are.

    “We’re all looking forward to it; it’s a massive game. It’s a little bit different from pre-season friendlies that you’d normally be playing at this time of year.”

    [pullquote]We’re all looking forward to it; it’s a massive game. It’s a little bit different from pre-season friendlies that you’d normally be playing at this time of year.[/pullquote]

    McHugh also discussed the reaction to his summer switch among the support of his old club.

    He said: “I was there for two years and I had a really good two years there, I played a lot of games and I had a really good relation with everyone at the club and I gave everything I could for the club every time I pulled on the shirt.

    “It’s just one of those things, there’s always a little bit of disappointment when you leave but I wish them all the best and I hope they have a really good season and go one step further than we did last year; we just couldn’t get over the line and get promoted.”

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    McGhee – We’ll be in right frame of mind

    ‘Well boss Mark McGhee insists his side will be going in to the BetFred League Cup match against Rangers in the right frame of mind. 

    And despite only playing one pre-season friendly, McGhee believes Rangers will be well prepared for Saturday’s clash.

    Speaking to the press today, he said: “It’s a competitive game and I think we’ve got our heads around that, so it won’t feel like a pre-season game for us and I’m sure it won’t for Rangers either.

    “I think it’s early for a competitive game and we’ll be playing a relatively fresh side with three or four new additions over the summer, who’ll be dipping their toes in the water going into a competitive game very quickly.”

    [pullquote]It’s a competitive game and I think we’ve got our heads around that, so it won’t feel like a pre-season game for us and I’m sure it won’t for Rangers either. [/pullquote]

    Following the 4-1 loss to Hibs, the manager also feels a lot better going in to the Rangers game, having addressed the issues he had with the performance at the weekend.

    He said: “We’ve had a look at it again and we’ve dug in to see what was going on and we’ve discovered that there was a lot going on that wasn’t the way that we normally do things – both as individuals and as a group, defensively in particular.

    “But there were things that when we saw it we thought, actually this isn’t too difficult to fix.

    “There were some fundamental things that we do as a group and we did last season that made us very difficult to beat at times, gave us a chance of winning games, and those things weren’t in place on Sunday.

    He added: “But we hope to have corrected those mistakes and be a lot, lot better on Saturday.”

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    McLean in charge of Rangers clash


    The referee for Saturday’s BetFred League Cup group stage match with Rangers at Fir Park will be Steven McLean.

    Last season, Steven took charge of four ‘Well fixtures at Fir Park – three league fixtures and a Scottish Cup clash.

    The first of the season arrived in August, when Louis Moult’s first half penalty gave the Steelmen a narrow 1-0 victory over Kilmarnock.

    The second was another narrow victory – the 2-1 success against Partick Thistle when an own goal and a Scott McDonald header gave ‘Well all three points.

    The final league game for McLean was a 2-2 draw with Hearts in late November, when the Steelmen were twice pegged back to draw despite goals from Moult and Marvin Johnson.

    And the last time McLean took to the pitch at Fir Park was in the Scottish Cup 5th Round, when a late wonder-strike sent the Steelmen crashing out of the competition.

    Now one of Scotland’s most recognisable whistlers, ‘Well fans will be familiar with the 34-year old.

    His overall record in charge of Motherwell reads fifteen wins, six defeats and four draws from twenty-five matches.

    In those games, ‘Well have scored 50 and conceded 41. 72 cautions have been dished out, 42 flashed at those wearing Claret and Amber.

    Four players have been sent off, two for ‘Well (Fraser Kerr and Keith Lasley in the same match against Killie in February 2013).

    McLean will be assisted by Graham Chamber and Dougie Potter; with Kevin Clancy on fourth official duties.

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    Moult – I’ll play if I get the green light

    ‘Well striker Louis Moult admits he is desperate to play this Saturday despite his niggling injury and hopes to get the green light. 

    The 24-year-old Englishman is currently nursing a niggling injury, but the forward hopes it will not stop him playing.

    Moult said: “I want to play in every game I can. I’ll play Saturday if the gaffer gives me the green light. That’s the kind of person I am, I just want to get back on the pitch and score goals.

    “I’ve had one or two injuries before and, I’ll be honest with you, if I’m not in the starting 11 or I’m injured, I’m a nightmare to deal with. I’m not going to lie, my missus hates me.”

    Moult took a slight break from training today to launch the Steelmen’s new home kit at principal sponsors Motorpoint in Glasgow today.

    And, speaking to MFC TV, he admitted it has been frustrating, but added: “I love playing football and being happy playing football. That’s what makes me tick, it’s all I have ever known.”

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    Motorpoint announced as new principal sponsor

    Today, Tuesday 12th July, Motherwell Football Club is delighted to announce that the Club’s new principal sponsor for Season 16/17 is Motorpoint, the UK’s largest independent car retailer.

    Chief Operating Officer Alan Burrows commented: “We’re 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.

    Motorpoint will be using their sponsorship to engage with fans promoting money can’t buy experiences, aimed at bringing their customers and staff closer to the players and management of the Fir Park side.

    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.”

    Last season’s top scorer, Louis Moult is pictured below with the new 16/17 Macron home kit, which is available to fans for pre-order.

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    Rangers Ticket information

    Tickets are still available for Saturday’s Betfred Cup game with Rangers at Fir Park.

    Tickets are priced as follows and are available from the Fir Park ticket office, which has extended opening hours on Thursday:

    ADULTS:   £15
    CONCESSIONS:                           £10
    JUVENILES:   £5

    Ticker office opening hours.

    Tuesday9.15am – 4.30pm
    Wednesday9.15am – 4.30pm
    Thursday9.15am – 7.00pm
    Friday9.15am – 3.30pm

    Fans should take note of the following information in relation to the tie, which will be an all-ticket match.

    1. 2016/17 Season Ticket holders will have the option to purchase tickets for the match by using Voucher A from their book (maximum of three tickets per voucher). Current Season Ticket holders who have renewed or bought, but haven’t as yet received their books, can collect at the same time as purchasing their League Cup ticket(s), if they so wish. Fans can also renew or buy their Season Tickets at the same time too.

    2. Fans who haven’t renewed or bought their season ticket for 2016/17 can still buy tickets, but must have been a season ticket holder in the previous three years, have bought home end tickets over the last three seasons or are a ‘Well Society member on or before 26th May 2016. Please note, this is not applicable in the Phil O’Donnell Stand where, due to space restrictions, only those who have bought (or will buy/renew prior to the match) their 2016/17 Season Ticket will have the option to buy three tickets (as per point 1).

    3. In both points 1 and 2, the club will endeavour to allocate tickets together, but in situations such as the Phil O’Donnell Centre Stand, it might not always be possible.

    4. Visiting fans will be housed in the South Stand behind the goal at Fir Park. There will be no additional provisions in the wings of the Phil O’Donnell Stand, both of which will be closed for this match. Visiting fans should purchase their tickets direct from Rangers FC – there will no sale of away tickets from Fir Park either before or on the day of the match.

    5. Any fan purchasing tickets on behalf of others should note they take full responsibility for that person(s).

    6. Concessions are considered to be over 60s, full time students with a valid matriculation card and young adults aged 16-18 (proof of age may be required). Juveniles are listed as Under 16s.

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    TV: Highlights from Easter Road

    Highlights from Motherwell’s final pre-season game at Easter Road.

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    McGhee – We were off the pace

    ‘Well boss Mark McGhee admitted there weren’t many positives after losing 4-1 away to Hibs today.

    Despite a promising opening fifteen minutes, the Fir Parkers let their early lead slip in their final pre-season game before facing Rangers next weekend.

    The manager admitted his side were off the pace. He said: “We’ve been given a good workout that’s for sure; we’ve been made to chase and been made to work hard to contain Hibs.

    “I thought Hibs were excellent today and we were way off the pace that they were, so we can see that we’ve got quite a bit to go.”

    However, McGhee knows that the performance levels of his team will only increase with game-time.

    [pullquote]Other than it’s another game towards fitness, we can’t take many positives, but we know there’s obviously a lot for us to do and consider.”[/pullquote]

    He added: “Other than it’s another game towards fitness, we can’t take many positives, but we know there’s obviously a lot for us to do and consider.”

    Having come through pre-season with no major injuries, it looked worrying that there may have been a couple of knocks picked up, but the manager insisted there is nothing to worry about.

    He said: “Marvin hit a nerve and it was sore at the time but we’re fine and Jacob got hit in the face but it was nothing serious.”

    McGhee’s men host Rangers at Fir Park on Saturday, and the pre-season preparations go on for Motherwell this coming week.

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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.