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  • Archive

    Pearson returns to the ‘Well

  • Archive

    Two join the Under 20s squad

  • Archive

    Fry and Laing depart the Steelmen

  • Archive

    TV: Highlights from Dingwall

  • Archive

    McGhee: Win tonight gives us belief

  • Archive

    Ross County 1 – 2 Motherwell

  • Archive

    Oliver Pain arrives / Watt departs on loan

  • Archive

    TV: Highlights from Excelsior Stadium

  • Archive

    Craigan: Proud of the team

  • Archive

    Motherwell U20s 4 – 3 Hamilton U20s

  • Archive

    Pearson returns to the ‘Well

    Motherwell FC can today confirm the signing of Stephen Pearson until the end of the season.

    The free agent has penned a deal with the Steelmen which see’s him arrive for his third stint in Lanarkshire.

    Pearson, who has returned from a spell in India with Atletico Kolkata, will wear the number 88 jersey for the Fir Parkers and passed a medical this morning.

    [pullquote]He brings an energy to the midfield, a physical presence and he drives forward – he will be a huge boost for us as we head in to a crucial run of games and as we head towards the split too of course.[/pullquote]

    ‘Well boss Mark McGhee said: “We’re delighted to have Pearo back and I’m sure all of the supporters will be too.

    “He brings an energy to the midfield, a physical presence and he drives forward – he will be a huge boost for us as we head in to a crucial run of games and as we head towards the split too of course.”

    He added: “It really just tops off a terrific January window in my opinion, and I feel now we have the strongest squad we’ve had all season.”

  • Archive

    Two join the Under 20s squad

    Stephen Craigan’s Under 20s have added two players on deadline day to boost the squad for the second half of the season.

    The young Steelmen currently sit second in the SPFL Development League, four points off top and face a Youth Cup Semi Final clash against either Celtic or league-leaders Hibs, as they aim to hold onto their trophy.

    With regular goalkeeper Peter Morrison requiring an operation for a broken wrist, Craigan has taken Sunderland stopper Ollie Pain on loan to the end of the season.

    The 19-year old Aussie will compete with fellow youngster Jordan Pettigrew for a spot between the sticks.

    Also joining the club is 18-year Northern Ireland Youth International midfielder Shea Gordon.

    [pullquote]Both have looked at our club and that pathway we’ve created towards the first-team and want to play a part in it.[/pullquote]

    Gordon came through the ranks at Sheffield United, but was released by the Blades to pursue a professional career elsewhere.

    Under 20s boss Craigan said: “We’re really pleased to add both players to the squad at a busy time of year.

    “Peter Morrison will miss the next few months and we needed Ollie to come in.

    “He has shown up exceptionally well in training and he’s the type of lad who has ambitions of getting into the first-team straight away.

    “Shea is a lad we know well. He’s captained the Sheffield United youth teams and has International experience that will be valuable to our squad.

    “Both have looked at our club and that pathway we’ve created towards the first-team and want to play a part in it.”

  • Archive

    Fry and Laing depart the Steelmen

    Motherwell FC can today confirm the departures of defender Louis Laing by mutual consent and young midfielder Tom Fry on a development loan.

    Fry has joined Annan Athletic on a development loan until the end of the season.

    The youngster, who will be experiencing some valuable first team experience with the Scottish League Two side, could be a shrewd signing for Jim Chapman’s side – boasting over 15 assists for the Steelmen Under 20s this term.

    The Welshman will be available for selection for Stephen Craigan in the Scottish FA Youth Cup and the Development League.

    Laing, on the other hand, who has been on loan with Notts County for the first half of the season, has departed the club by mutual consent after signing for the club in January 2015.

    Everyone at the Motherwell FC would like to thank Louis for his time at Fir Park and wish him the very best of luck in his future career.

  • Archive

    TV: Highlights from Dingwall

    Extended highlights from Global Energy Stadium as goals from Scott McDonald and Louis Moult give ‘Well a 1-2 win over Ross County.

  • Archive

    McGhee: Win tonight gives us belief

    ‘Well boss Mark McGhee believes tonights win against Ross County sets his side up to go in to a tough run of fixtures with a sense of optimism.

    A composed finish from Scott McDonald in the first half and a header from Louis Moult was enough to oversee a difficult Ross County side at the Global Energy Stadium in Dingwall.

    And after the match, McGhee revealed the positive impact it could have on the team going forward.

    He said: “All round I’m pleased, apart from the equalising goal which was disappointing because at that stage I think we were comfortable and could’ve went on to win the game comfortably.

    “As it was we had to slug it out a bit until the end and although I felt comfortable that we deserved the win, we had to perhaps work a little bit harder than we may have had to if we got the second goal instead of allowing them to equalise.

    [pullquote]All round I’m pleased, apart from the equalising goal which was disappointing because at that stage I think we were comfortable and could’ve went on to win the game comfortably.[/pullquote]

    “It was a great finish from Scott and I said in the changing room that, as a centre forward myself, I didn’t like that chance, there was too much time, too much to think about, too many options. It was a terrific finish and when he’s through on goal you fancy him to bury it.”

    He added: “It’s an important win and we got a good win up here at Inverness too. Those are difficult matches and I don’t think we’ve always managed that, to come up here and win these games so it’s important that we’ve done that.

    “Now we’ve got to put some sort of run together with a really difficult period coming up – Hearts, Aberdeen, Celtic – these are big games but a result like this kind of allows you to roll your sleeves up, go in to these matches and have a go.

    “I don’t mean it takes the pressure off, but it gives you that belief that you can go in and compete with these top teams in the division.”

    [pullquote]It’s an important win and we got a good win up here at Inverness too. Those are difficult matches and I don’t think we’ve always managed that, to come up here and win these games so it’s important that we’ve done that.[/pulquote]

    The ‘Well boss has been boosted by a few new faces in the January transfer window, including Zak Jules who came off the bench tonight for the Steelmen.

    McGhee believes that his side are in a strong position now in terms of depth, and with Hearts up next for the Fir Parkers on Saturday afternoon, the manager insists his side will go in to the game feeling ready.

    He said: “I think we know where we are in it all, we know who the top sides in the league are at the moment and that it will be tough to beat them, but we’ve made a good fist of it so far.

    “We play Hearts at home, that’s important and we’ll have a go at beating them on Saturday.”

    He added: “I think with the way the squad is looking at the moment, the strength of the squad and the competition we have for places means we’ll only improve.”

  • Archive

    Ross County 1 – 2 Motherwell

    [tab:Match report]

    Motherwell secured an important three points away to Ross County in the Ladbrokes Premiership tonight.

    And the victory see’s the Steelmen move in to the top six thanks to goals from Scott McDonald and Louis Moult either side of a Jay McEveley header.

    In truth, it was a fairly uneventful match, but for manager Mark McGhee, the three points is the crucial thing and he was rewarded by the combination of his clinical forwards and his sturdy defence.

    McGhee named two changes to the side that lost 2-0 to Rangers at the weekend, giving Craig Clay what was perhaps a deserved rest after his tireless work in the two recent matches with Mark Warburton’s side.

    Lee Lucas stepped in while skipper Keith Lasley returned to the starting line-up in place of Joe Chalmers.

    And it was a fairly dull first half despite the fact there was two goals.

    Neither side really got a hold of the game with the highlights for both sides perhaps the link up play of the forwards.

    Scott McDonald, afforded a start after his red card from Saturday was appealed, combined terrifically with Louis Moult at points while Alex Schalk looked lively and was trying to link with Liam Boyce and Jim O’Brien either side of him and spin in behind the Motherwell defence, which stood strong.

    However, it was an error from County defender Jay McEveley, not the link up with Moult, which afforded McDonald the chance to waltz through one-on-one and stroke past County stopper Scott Fox.

    Motherwell looked likely to keep their lead going in to the break thanks to two tremendous saves from Craig Samson, who tipped a deflected cross over his bar and got down well to deny Boyce’s goal bound header.

    However, he couldn’t keep out a rather unorthodox header from McEveley who stooped to get down to a Martin Woods corner and spun his header high in to the air. It eventually found it’s way in to the back of the net through a packed six yard box.

    Neither side created too much following that goal and the game remained evenly poised going in to the half time break.

    That forced Staggies boss Jim McIntyre to make a couple of changes to try and kick his side in to life as the Steelmen seemed to be in control of the match.

    Milan Lalkovic and Jason Naismith came on for Chris Routis and goalscorer McEveley, forcing fullback Marcus Fraser to move in to a central position alongside skipper Paul Quinn.

    The County fullback slotted in well, giving McDonald and Moult a tough challenge to try and find the all important second goal.

    However, Moult took his chance when Hammell’s corner was met by the forward who was unmarked, and he powered his header beyond Fox for his tenth league goal of the season.

    He went close again shortly after, striking a close range shot off the post after Fox spilled it in to his path, but the linesman had already flagged for offside.

    McGhee brought off Lucas, who tired after working hard throughout the match, and replaced him with Clay.

    County had a couple of half decent chances in the final 20 minutes, but a resolute ‘Well defence stood strong and the towering Stephen McManus in particular, stood up to win numerous headers and keep the travelling Steelmen in front for the remainder of the match.

    The three points saw Motherwell leapfrog Ross County in the table and move in to the top six, and with a tough run of fixtures coming up for the Fir Parkers, it also arrives in timely fashion for Mark McGhee and his players.

     

    [tab:As it happened]

     Alastair Reilly at Global Energy Stadium

     

    FT: Ross County 1 – 2 Motherwell

    A superb three points to take home from the Highlands which pushes ‘Well into the top six

    FULL TIME!

    90+2′ | 1-2
    Motherwell sub, Ainsworth on for Moult

    90′ | 1-2
    Three minutes added on….

    83′ | 1-2
    Lalkovic puts in a ball from the left which Schalk heads inches past the post. Up other end Cadden blasts well wide.

    80′ | 1-2
    McDonald spins 25 yards out and gets a shot away but it’s well over the bar.

    79′ | 1-2
    Again close for County but this time Heneghan gets his body in the way of Naismith’s volleyed shot.

    77′ | 1-2
    Motherwell sub, Zak Jules makes his debut, replacing Stevie Hammell.

    74′ | 1-2
    Great ball in from the left by Clay which finds the head of Moult but his effort is inches past the post.

    73′ | 1-2
    A let-off there as County look sure to score but Gardyne slices wide of the right post!

    71′ | 1-2
    Close for County! Deep ball in falls to Boyce but somehow the ‘Well defence block and sweep it away!

    70′ | 1-2
    Motherwell sub, Lee Lucas makes way for Craig Clay.

    69′ | 1-2
    Another fine save by Samson! Denies Schalk’s powerful left-footed shot from just inside the box.

    66′ | 1-2
    McManus booked for clattering Boyce on the half-way line

    62′ | 1-2
    Ross County sub, O’Brien off for Gardyne

    60′ | 1-2
    Chow booked for hauling down Moult as he broke.

    60′ | 1-2
    Samson called into action, denying Schalk with his feet as the striker burst clear.

    53′ | 1-2
    MOULT bullets home the header in off the bar to put the Steelmen back in front!!

    52′ | 1-2
    Cadden wins a corner on the right….GGGOOOAAALLLL!!!

    50′ | 1-1
    Chance!! Cadden gets a good low ball in but Fox dives low at Moult’s feet to divert his shot into the path of McDonald but offside

    Second half is underway.

    Two subs at the break for County, Lalkovic and Naismith on for McEveley and Routis

    HT: Ross County 1 – 1 Motherwell #RCFCvMFC

    34′ | 1-1
    Good save by Samson! Dives low to his left to palm away a powerful Woods header.

    Samson booked for his protests as he felt he was impeded.

    34′ | 1-1
    Goal – County draw level. McEveley stoops low to loop a header over Samson. All square in Dingwall.

    31′ | 0-1
    Van Der Weg wrestles Cadden to the ground. Free-kick wide on the right….Good ball in but it’s headed clear.

    29′ | 0-1
    Almost 2! McDonald skips past McEveley again but this time the ball bobbles slightly and he slices it wide of the post.

    28′ | 0-1
    Lucas fires a ball forward which McEveley misses setting McDONALD clean through and makes no mistake! 0-1!!!

    GGGOOOAAALLL!!!

    26′ | 0-0
    Chance! Cadden puts the ball back across goal but McEveley gets enough on it to take it away from Moult!

    24′ | 0-0
    Superb save be Samson! Fraser’s shot is deflected and it looked like it was looping in but for the hand of the diving Samson

    22′ | 0-0
    Speculative 35 yard volley from McHugh which never looks like testing Fox and sails well over the bar.

    19′ | 0-0
    Half chance as Moult gets in behind the County defence. Ball falls to Lucas whose goalbound shot is blocked by Quinn

    17′ | 0-0
    Lovely pass from Hammell to Moult who slides it into the net but the linesman’s flag goes up. Close.

    14′ | 0-0
    Couple of tantalising crosses there from Hammell but from both, ‘Well can’t finish it off.

    12′ | 0-0
    Tait’s ball into the box is headed wide for a corner by Quinn. From resulting corner, ref blows for a foul by McManus

    9′ | 0-0
    Good passing play from County there but Lasley reads it well and hooks it clear for a corner.

    6′ | 0-0
    Lasley gets some space on the left but his target, Moult, slips and the chance goes

    We’re underway here in Dingwall. COYW!!!

    [tab:Reaction]

    Motherwell manager Mark McGhee:

     

    Ross County manager Jim McIntyre:

     

    [tab:Man-of-the-match]

    [poll id=”308″]

  • Archive

    Oliver Pain arrives / Watt departs on loan

    Motherwell FC can today confirm the arrival of young goalkeeper Oliver Pain from Sunderland on a loan deal until the end of the season.

    The 19-year-old Aussie will play under Stephen Craigan for the Motherwell U20s as he makes the switch to Lanarkshire after it was confirmed PJ Morrison would require surgery on a wrist injury.

    The youngster has come through the youth set up at the English Premier League side and will provide competition for Jordan Pettigrew and Jamie Stevenson in the ‘Well 20s side.

    The club can also confirm the departure of Luke Watt to East Fife on a development loan until the end of the season.

    The 19-year-old defender joins the Scottish League One outfit for the rest of the campaign to gain some valuable first-team experience after spending the first half of the campaign at Stranraer.

    Everyone at Motherwell FC would like to welcome Oliver to the club and wish Luke all the best.

  • Archive

    TV: Highlights from Excelsior Stadium

    Extended highlights from Excelsior Stadium as Motherwell’s under 20s staged a remarkable comeback, beating Hamilton 4-3 in the Development League.

  • Archive

    Craigan: Proud of the team

    U20s boss Stephen Craigan admitted just how proud he is of his youngsters after they clawed back a three goal deficit to win 4-3 tonight.

    A Jake Hastie hattrick and a James Scott header sealed the three points for the Steelmen and speaking to MFC TV at full time, Craigan revealed he was not only proud, but relieved too.

    He said: “I think there’s a sense of relief because we won the game but it was probably more pleasing in the second half because we had to work out how to play against ten men.

    “It can be difficult playing against ten men sometimes because the way they then set up was like a 4-3-2 formation meaning our space was always on the other side of the pitch.”

    He added: “It’s hard getting that message across and trying to enforce that so we had to get to half time and reaffirm the message that if we’re attacking down the left we probably need to play another pass and get down the other side.”

    [pullquote]I think there’s a sense of relief because we won the game but it was probably more pleasing in the second half because we had to work out how to play against ten men.[/pullquote]

    Despite being thrilled with the victory, Craigan admitted it was equally pleasing to see how his side adapted to the chaotic match at the Excelsior Stadium.

    He said: “Of course it’s nice when you win but when you’re working with younger players you just want to see them take information on board and improve and try and work something out themselves on the pitch.

    “We changed the shape at half time, we almost got an extra man in midfield because we felt that was where we could link up the play.”

    He added: “In the first half it was three versus three so we almost made it four versus three and that just allowed Tom and David to play in gaps and spaces.

    “When it goes to 3-0 I think anything can happen. We get the goal back quickly and then they go down to nine men and that makes it difficult for them.

    The one thing Hamilton always do is they work hard, they’re resolute, they’ve got good quality in their team so the fact that we’ve won the game tonight is pleasing.”

    [pullquote]I’m always proud of them and I don’t always tell them that because I like to keep them on their toes and working hard, but it’s pleasing about how they went about it.[/pullquote]

    The 20s boss has seen his side nettle from behind twice already this year, something he admits is hugely pleasing for him as a manager.

    He said: “I was going to say that it doesn’t surprise me that they came back like that but there’s moments when you think ‘do we have it in us?’ and I said it at half time that we had to go and rescue the situation.

    “We’ve been asked questions over the season and it was another test of character for them – could they be brave, wrestle the game back?

    “The fact that we go the goal back so quickly played a part and you could sense the belief among the players, the energy, they kept going.”

    He added: “I’m always proud of them and I don’t always tell them that because I like to keep them on their toes and working hard, but it’s pleasing about how they went about it.”

  • Archive

    Motherwell U20s 4 – 3 Hamilton U20s

    A dramatic end to Motherwell’s derby clash with Hamilton saw the young Steelmen turn around a 3-0 setback to win 4-3 at the Excelsior Stadium tonight.

    A perfect hattrick from winger Jake Hastie and a header from substitute James Scott brought Stephen Craigan’s side from behind to close the gap on Development League leaders Hibernian with a big win in the Lanarkshire derby.

    Craigan named a young line-up for his sides clash with their local rivals – with 20-year-old David Ferguson the only over age player in the starting line-up.

    And a poor start left the Steelmen chasing the game after just five minutes when Accies midfielder Ross Cunningham fired the visitors in front with a close range finish following a sweeping move down the right flank.

    ‘Well were afforded a terrific chance to draw level when Sean Want brought down Dylan Falconer in the area and was shown a straight red card.

    However, from the spot, Luke Watt was denied by a strong save from Accies stopper Darren Jamieson and the away side stayed in front for the opening 15 minutes of the fast-paced match.

    Five minutes later and Hamilton went close to a second despite being a man down and despite Motherwell starting to grow in to the match.

    A pinpoint cross to the head of Jordan McGregor was turned goalward by the tall defender, but he put too much on it and it nestled on the top of the net.

    In the 24th minute, Hughes struck Hamilton in to a two goal lead with a powerful finish from inside the Motherwell box. With his right foot the Accies midfielder made no mistake and Pettigrew had no chance.

    The Fir Parkers started to get the ball on the deck and play some decent football, but it was a high, curled cross in to the box which so nearly resulted in a way back in to the match. Hastie’s ball in was just a little overhit for Mackin and the tall striker could only nod narrowly past the post.

    The game calmed down somewhat in the final ten minutes of the half until Cunningham’s tremendous effort from a freekick from over 25-yards crashed the crossbar on the stroke of half time.

    The first chance of the second half fell Motherwell’s way and to the prolific Mackin. Another deep cross from a freekick on the left was met by the forward but he headed wide.

    After 55 minutes of play, the first ‘Well youngster went in to the book. Turnbull was deemed to have shown dissent to the official and was duly cautioned.

    However, the young midfielder nearly played a hand in pulling the Fir Park side back in to the match when he got to the byline and fizzed a low ball across goal, but Accies defender McGregor hooked it clear.

    Moments later, young Falconer nearly completed the spectacular – touching the ball up in to the air before striking it on the volley – but it flew high and wide.

    And down the other end of the park, Motherwell were made to pay when Ryan Tierney worked his way past two challenges and rifled a shot high past Pettigrew from just outside the box. It was central, but it had power and was well finished.

    The Steelmen got back in to the match almost immediately though, when Hamilton full back Breslin committed a sloppy foul and gave away a penalty. It could have been his second yellow too but the referee kept his cards in his pocket.

    Hastie confidently stepped up and slammed the ball low and hard past Jamieson, sending him the wrong way in the process.

    Shortly after that, Accies midfielder Ferguson was sent off after he lost his head with a reckless tackle that merited a red card every day of the week.

    An inspired substitution in the shape of James Scott for Jordan Armstrong changed the game for Motherwell, and within five minutes of the youngster coming on he had a goal and Motherwell were just one behind.

    An outstanding cross from Luke Watt was met by the head of the young forward before another ball from the full-back was played in minutes later and this time Hastie headed home – drawing the Steelmen level and grabbing his second of the game.

    And then, in stunning fashion, Craigan’s side took the lead – and what a goal it was too.

    Hastie, cutting inside on to his apparent weaker right foot, curled an absolutely unstoppable strike in to the far corner from distance and from a tough angle too to complete his hattrick – a perfect one too. Jamieson in the Accies net had no chance.

    With just over five minutes left in the half, the Steelmen never looked under threat again and held out for the victory to keep the pressure on league leaders Hibs.