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    Elliott Frear signs for the Steelmen

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    Win £100 worth of vouchers

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    Ticket office open late tonight

  • Archive

    Coach Jim Hollman departs

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    McManus: Next game is most important

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    McGhee: We’ll start again

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    TV: Highlights from Station Park

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    Craigan: Professional performance

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    Dundee Utd U20s 0 – 3 Motherwell U20s

  • Archive

    Collum to officiate Gers clash

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    Elliott Frear signs for the Steelmen

    Motherwell FC can today confirm the signing of Elliott Frear from National League side Forest Green Rovers for an undisclosed fee.

    The 26-year-old put pen to paper this evening and, subject to normal registration and clearance formalities, has penned a two-and-a-half-year deal.

    Making nineteen National League appearances this term, the 26-year-old, who will wear squad number 17 this season, has scored once and laid on eight assists.

    Speaking to MFC TV after signing with the Steelmen, Frear expressed his delight to be making his move north of the border.

    He said: “I’m delighted, it’s been a long window to be honest because I know that there was interest last summer, but it’s been good to get up here this morning and I’m just glad to get it done.

    [pullquote]I’m delighted, it’s been a long window to be honest because I know that there was interest last summer, but it’s been good to get up here this morning and I’m just glad to get it done.[/pullquote]

    “I know a few of the boys here already from playing in the National League so I’m really looking forward to get going.”

    A number of ‘Well stars have made the switch north and went on to be tremendous signings for the Steelmen, which Frear admits played a part in his decision to sign his deal.

    The winger said: “That was one of the main things really – along with signing for a big club like Motherwell – seeing the likes of Louis Moult and Marvin Johnson go on to do well here, so hopefully I can make the same impact and kick on.”

    When asked to describe his style of play to the eagerly awaiting Motherwell fans on MFC TV, Frear said: “I’m just an out-and-out winger to be honest. I play on the left side and I like to get at people and cross it – that’s my game.

    “I got nearly 50 assists over the past few seasons so hopefully I can emulate that up here.”

    [pullquote]I’m just an out-and-out winger to be honest. I play on the left side and I like to get at people and cross it – that’s my game.[/pullquote]

    Since the departure of Marvin Johnson in the summer, a left-sided midfielder is a position Mark McGhee has been keen to fill.

    In Frear, he believes he’s found his man. He said: “We’re delighted to welcome Elliott to the club, especially because we were keen to sign him in the summer.

    “He’s a true winger, a left-sider and I’m really pleased that we’ve secured his signature because he brings a bit of balance to the squad.

    He added: “I’ve said it before but I feel strengthening our squad, particularly at this stage of the campaign, was hugely important and in Elliott we’ve not only strengthened, but brought in something we’ve been missing.

    “I look forward with anticipation to see how well he settles in. He has the right type of attitude to fit in with the squad we have here which I feel is hugely important.

    “Our business isn’t finished though. We still anticipate more faces arriving between now and the deadline.”

     

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    Win £100 worth of vouchers

    Motherwell Football Club and sponsor Motorpoint want to give you £100 towards your Christmas shopping!

    All you have to do is find one of the Motorpoint promotional team on Saturday when we face Rangers at Fir Park and you could be the lucky winner of £100 of Love2Shop vouchers.

    Here is how to win:

    • Find one of the Motorpoint Team
    • Take a selfie in the Motorpoint windscreen
    • Post it on Facebook or Twitter before Kick off at 12.30pm
    • Tag in @motorpoint and @motherwellfc
    • Wait until half time and you could be on the pitch collecting your prize!
    • Spend, Spend, Spend
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    Ticket office open late tonight

    Tickets for the Ladbrokes Premiership match with RANGERS on Saturday 28th January at Fir Park (12.30pm KO) are available from the Fir Park ticket office.

    And you can get yours now, as the ticket office is open late tonight until 7pm (Thursday 26th), usual hours of 9:15am – 3:30pm on Friday, and you still have time on Saturday morning too, when the ticket office will be open from 9am till kick-off at 12:30pm.

    The following admission prices apply – (please note this is an all ticket fixture and Rangers end tickets have been given to Ibrox for direct purchase):

    ADULTS   £27/£20  
    CONCESSIONS      £18/£16
    JUVENILE   £14/£10
    FAMILY   £27/£20
    • Concessions are listed as 65 and over and 16-17 year olds
    • Juveniles are listed as under 16s
    • Family ticket consists of one adult and one juvenile
    • Cheaper priced tickets are for the John Hunter Stand only
    • Fans who require ambulant or wheelchair access should contact Sharon or John McCaskie on 07745 494631/ 07711 992161 or email disabledfans@motherwellfc.co.uk
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    Coach Jim Hollman departs

    Motherwell FC can today confirm the departure of Goalkeeping Coach Jim Hollman, who has joined English League One side Northampton Town.

    After spells with Ipswich Town, Norwich City and Cardiff City, Hollman arrived at Fir Park in the summer of 2015, appointed by then boss Ian Baraclough to replace Gordon Marshall who had moved on to Aberdeen.

    Jim was a popular figure amongst the players and staff at the club, and leaves with everyone’s very best wishes. The club will now look to appoint a replacement as soon as possible.

    ‘Well boss Mark McGhee said: “We have all really enjoyed working with Jim and thank him for his tremendous work with the club over the past eighteen months.

    “He was offered a position at Northampton and wished to give it a go. We have a few potential candidates in mind to replace Jim and as soon as we can, we’ll appoint his successor.”

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    McManus: Next game is most important

    Stephen McManus admits he can’t wait to get back to business on Saturday after last weekend’s Scottish Cup exit.

    The defender doesn’t feel it matters that the Steelmen play Rangers again, insisting that the next game is always the most important one regardless of opposition.

    And speaking to the press at Motorpoint this morning, the ex-Scotland captain revealed his heartbreak last weekend, but his desire to push past it.

    McManus said: “It was good to get back in to training on Monday, that was the big thing because we were devastated as a group, really disappointed.

    “That was probably the worst I’ve felt in my full career after a game.”

    He added: “Saturday was tough, Saturday night was tough, Sunday was tough – so it was good to come in to work on Monday and get back to training.

    [pullquote]Saturday was tough, Saturday night was tough, Sunday was tough – so it was good to come in to work on Monday and get back to training.[/pullquote]

    “Some of us don’t always train on a Monday but for me it was a big, big thing to get back on the pitch, back among the boys in preparing for Saturday.”

    Reflecting on the final five minutes of the match, McManus said: “When the second goal went in and as soon as the ball had left my boot I could see it happening that they were going to score so at that point of the game it was difficult.

    “For me it was really disappointing and yes mistakes happen in the game so you have to put it behind you and move on – you need to face up to the music and that’s how it goes.”

    He added: “I’ll make mistakes in the future and I’ve made mistakes in the past, everybody does, but it’s about how you react from it and that’s the biggest thing.

    “At 34 you’re sitting there, you’ve experienced a lot in your career from the highs of winning leagues, losing leagues, losing cups and winning cups – pretty much everything, but for me Saturday was the toughest thing I’ve had to take.”

    The 34-year-old admitted that it doesn’t matter who the Steelmen play this weekend, it’s just important to get back to action quickly.

    [pullquote]I think everybody that comes to our place knows that they’ll be up against a side that will give their all for the manager, for the supporters and now it’s just about us finding that blend of consistency.[/pullquote]

    He said: “For me it wouldn’t matter if we were playing Manchester United, Real Madrid or whoever – the next game is always the most important one.

    “It’s good to get back to league business now, it’s good to have the winter break out the road and we know where we’re at as a squad.

    “Hopefully we can get a couple of new faces in for the remainder of the season and we’ll look to kick on.”

    He added: “We’ve not really hit top form consistently this season when you see how well we’ve played against Celtic – that’s the level we can play at and we know that.

    “The manager has tinkered with his formation and his line-up at times and that’s just to try and find the right blend, the right style of play that suits us with the players we’ve got at our disposal.”

    On Saturday’s opposition, McManus said: “Rangers are a good side, there’s no doubt about it and they have players that can hurt you.

    “I think everybody that comes to our place knows that they’ll be up against a side that will give their all for the manager, for the supporters and now it’s just about us finding that blend of consistency.”

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    McGhee: We’ll start again

    ‘Well boss Mark McGhee admits that he is over last weekend’s cup loss and is just focussing on moving up the league table.

    The Steelmen face Rangers for the second time in the space of a week as Premiership football gets back underway in 2017.

    And speaking to the press this morning at Motorpoint in Glasgow, McGhee revealed his hopes for another good performance on Saturday.

    He said: “We were back in yesterday and we’re over it. It was a huge disappointment but we’ve got another important game on Saturday, another opportunity, so we’ll start again.

    “I’m experienced enough to get over it because it’s not the end of the world and I know there’s other games, but you just have to be honest in these situations and at that time that was how I felt.”

    [pullquote]We were back in yesterday and we’re over it. It was a huge disappointment but we’ve got another important game on Saturday, another opportunity, so we’ll start again.[/pullquote]

    He added: “It was an opportunity missed in all sorts of ways because I was very ambitious about the cup this year – I had high expectations and I felt if we could get past that one and maybe get a little bit of luck in the draw then who knows what could have happened.”

    With competitive football firmly back in business after a three-week winter break, McGhee expressed his feelings about the stop-start flow this season.

    He said: “I’ve said this before but I don’t feel our season has started. It’s stalled and stalled with international breaks, injuries and all sorts and I just don’t feel like there’s been a flow yet.

    “On Saturday I saw it as an opportunity to really kick on, I saw it as a starting point for the proper performance of our season.

    “All of these things went through my head at the time, I was disappointed, but I’m over it.”

    It was Rangers of course who inflicted the cup heartbreak on McGhee and his side, but the manager is under no illusions that playing Rangers so soon after will play any part on this weeks game – it is a fresh fixture and bears no relevance.

    The boss said: “The fact it’s Rangers on Saturday isn’t all that important. We just move on, it’s about the three points and we’ve just got to get up the table.

    [pullquote]They’ll have seen us up close on Saturday and learnt some things about us so there’s that as well, but we just have to see what we can learn from Saturday and perhaps even improve our performance.[/pullquote]

    “You can say all you like about revenge but it won’t be revenge – if we win on Saturday it won’t be revenge for last Saturday because that’s done – it’ll be three points that will contribute to our safety and our push for a top six spot.

    “The fact it’s the same opposition is coincidental but they’ll have one or two back so their team might be slightly different.”

    He added: “They’ll have seen us up close on Saturday and learnt some things about us so there’s that as well, but we just have to see what we can learn from Saturday and perhaps even improve our performance.”

    Looking ahead to Saturday following last weekend, McGhee said: “I can look at all the positives from last weekend but just as importantly I’m looking at the first half from Saturday and thinking about what didn’t work well because I was disappointed with our first half performance.

    “On Saturday the best team won, there’s no doubt about that, but the best team doesn’t always win and we set ourselves up for a certain type of performance which we didn’t fully execute in the first half but we did in the second half, to give ourselves a chance to beat opposition who are proving week-in, week-out that they’re better than us.”

    He added: “So you can beat teams that are better than you and it’s those things that I thought about before the game, that we didn’t do in the first half, that I’ve got to reinforce this week to make sure we do in the first half this week.”

  • Archive

    TV: Highlights from Station Park

    Extended highlights from Station Park where Stephen Craigan’s Under 20s overcame Dundee Utd in a 0-3 win.

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    Craigan: Professional performance

    U20s boss Stephen Craigan was happy with his youngsters win in the Development League this afternoon but admitted they didn’t quite hit their heights.

    A 3-0 victory over Dundee United in Forfar this afternoon means the young Steelmen have now scored sixteen goals in their last three matches and sit second in the league – four points behind leaders Hibs.

    Speaking to MFC TV at full time, Craigan admitted it wasn’t the best game, but the performance was “professional”.

    He said: “I think if we’re honest it wasn’t the best of games.

    “And without being overly critical of the surface it was a bit sticky, a bit dry, and I think sometimes when you play on astroturf you expect the pitch to have a bit of grease on it and the ball will move a little bit quicker.

    [pullquote]When you come away from home sometimes you need a professional performance and we defended reasonably well – Jordan had a really good save early on in the game.[/pullquote]

    “But like I said it was a bit stop-start, a bit sticky and the ball got caught under  people’s feet.”

    He added: “When you come away from home sometimes you need a professional performance and we defended reasonably well – Jordan had a really good save early on in the game.

    “Apart from that we didn’t really feel tested – there wasn’t an awful lot in the game but I just felt going forward we had a little bit more than they did.

    “It certainly wasn’t one for the purists, and I think the boys are still adapting and learning how to play on a Sunday and then a Wednesday and how they recover in that time but if you’d told me before we came up here that we’d win 3-0 I’d have been delighted.”

    With the quick succession between games, Craigan hailed his sides ability to keep battling towards the final few minutes and grab late goals in the manner they did.

    He also praised the players who came in to the team.

    [pullquote]We managed to freshen things up a bit from Sunday with David Ferguson and Lee Lucas coming in to the team, having a trialist in and Tom Fry coming back in to the team so it just kind of reenergises you a bit.[/pullquote]

    He said: “We managed to freshen things up a bit from Sunday with David Ferguson and Lee Lucas coming in to the team, having a trialist in and Tom Fry coming back in to the team so it just kind of reenergises you a bit.

    “At the start of the game, having had a two hour bus journey up here, there’s a lot of sitting around and you tend to start these games a little bit slower but once we got control of the game and got a foothold in it we looked better.”

    He added: “Considering we went a month without games and then had two in four days was always going to be a test for them.

    “We have a game on Monday against Hamilton so they’ll get a rest for that but it’s all a learning curve.

    “I’m pleased we got the two late goals and Dylan Falconer was a bit unlucky to start but we had to give the chance to our trialist so it was good for Dylan to come on and get a goal.”

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    Dundee Utd U20s 0 – 3 Motherwell U20s

    Motherwell U20s returned to Development League action with a comfortable 3-0 win over Dundee United at Station Park in Forfar.

    Late goals from Lee Lucas and Dylan Falconer rounded off a strong showing from the youngsters after trialist gave Craigan’s side a first half lead.

    And the 20s coach named four changes to the side which won 4-3 at Partick on Sunday, bringing in David Ferguson, Lee Lucas, Tom Fry and a trialist in place of Jack McMillan, Allan Campbell, Ross MacLean and Dylan Falconer respectively.

    It was a relatively quiet opening ten minutes, with United’s Smith having the first notable chance when he struck a freekick narrowly over the crossbar.

    That seemed to spur the Fir Parkers into life and immediately down the other end Davie Turnbull saw his deflected effort blocked on to the post after a terrific bit of skill and work by the trialist on the right flank.

    And he was lively throughout the first half, heading narrowly wide of the United goal when he swapped roles with Turnbull and this time got his head on the end of the midfielders cross.

    A cheap freekick from a Dundee United perspective nearly led to the opening goal. Fry positioned himself over the ball and curled a terrific effort from 25-yards, but United stopper Josh Donaldson was well positioned and saved fairly comfortably.

    Five minutes later though and Motherwell’s trialist gave Craigan’s side the lead in the 32nd minute. It came from a stunning through ball from Turnbull which the winger managed to latch on to the end of by beating the offside trap and, first time, struck a left footed shot low and hard past Donaldson.

    The home side were limited to efforts from set pieces and Ali Coote was the next one up to try his luck, but he blazed it well over Jordan Pettigrew’s crossbar.

    Just a minute before the break, it looked as though ‘Well would double their lead when Jake Hastie smashed a dangerous low ball across the face of goal after he was played in down the left thanks to Mackin’s hold up play. The wingers cross was just a yard too far for Fry to stretch and prod home and it remained 1-0 as the half time whistle was blown.

    Right at the start of the second half, Hastie tore down the left flank and cause the Dundee United defence all sorts of problems. Racing in to the box, the winger fired a low strike at goal but, from a tight angle, it didn’t trouble Donaldson too much and he gathered it well.

    The match quietened down in the 15 minutes that followed that chance, but when United were a little slack in possession in the 62nd minute, Luke Watt, advancing from right back, did well to nick the ball deep in the opposition half. Graham Taylor was left no option and hacked down the defender, and had no arguments when he was shown a yellow card.

    From the following freekick, Hastie wasted the chance and overhit his cross wildly out for a goalkick.

    Taylor went in a little strong on Watt as the defender beat him to a challenge at the half way line, but the referee ignored calls for a second yellow. Watt then looked up and delivered a neat cross with the outside of his right boot towards the head of Mackin. The tall striker, who was stretching to reach the ball, couldn’t get enough on his header and it went wide of the mark.

    It was the forwards last bit of action as he was replaced by James Scott with 20 minutes remaining in the match. Hastie also left the field of play to be replaced by Dylan Falconer.

    The hosts were continually frustrated by a resolute ‘Well defence, and substitute Dominic McMeekin attempted a spectacular overhead kick when the ball set up for him from a dinked ball over the top, but it was wasteful and well off target.

    They were made to pay for their lack of cutting edge when Craigan’s youngsters doubled their lead with just four minutes left on the clock. The ball fell nicely for Lucas on the edge of the United box and the Welshman struck it low and hard and, thanks to a deflection, it flew past Donaldson.

    Less than a minute later, substitute Falconer got on the scoresheet when his scuffed shot sat up nicely for him to then thunder in to the top corner at the second attempt.

    It rounded off the afternoon and sealed the points as Craigan’s youngsters capped off a good week with another win and yet again lots of goals.

     

    Motherwell: Pettigrew, Watt, Livingston, Maguire, Ferguson, Lucas, Fry, Turnbull, Hastie (Falconer ’70), Mackin (Scott ’70), Trialist

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    Collum to officiate Gers clash

    Referee for Saturday’s league clash with Rangers at Fir Park is the experienced Willie Collum.

    One of Europe’s most recognisable officials, Willie will be handling his third ‘Well fixture of the campaign, after taking charge of the Lanarkshire derby back in September and the away trip to St Johnstone in December.

    An early own-goal from Saints keeper Zander Clark was cancelled out by an equally fortunate goal from forward Chris Kane as the two sides played out for a point at McDiarmind Park.

    The clash before that, against Hamilton, was a historic day as star forward Louis Moult bagged a phenomenal four goals as the Steelmen stormed to a 4-2 victory over local rivals Hamilton.

    Last season, Collum took charge on three occasions – all resulting in 2-1 defeats.

    The first was a defesat to eventual Champions Celtic, who clinched a 2-1 victory on a day when the Steelmen put in a sound display.

    The other two fixtures also ended in 1-2 home defeats. The first was at the hands of Aberdeen when Marvin Johnson’s early opener was cancelled out by Niall McGinn and Ash Taylor.

    The second, at the end of January, ended with Ross County taking the points when Stephen Pearson’s late goal wasn’t enough to earn the Fir Parkers anything after Jackson Irvine and Brian Graham had put the Staggies into a commanding lead.

    Those results are on the back of the six he took charge of in the 2014/15 campaign too.

    His overall record in charge of the Steelmen reads ten wins, eighteen defeats and eight draws from thirty-six matches (in all competitions).

    In those games, Motherwell have scored 51 and conceded 65.

    80 players have gone into the book, 37 wearing Claret and Amber, while six players have been dismissed – Ian Murray of Hibs at Easter Road seven years back, Jerard Aafjes at Falkirk seven seasons ago, Paul Dixon at the end of 2009/10, Henrik Ojamaa at the Caledonian Stadium and Fraser Kerr down at Rugby Park. Stephen McManus was shown a red card against Aberdeen but that was later rescinded after an appeal.

    Willie will be assisted by David McGeachie and Gordon Crawford with Ewan Anderson listed as fourth official.