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  • First team

    Storylines: Motherwell v Aberdeen

  • First team

    Next up: Aberdeen

  • Club

    Shop the ML1 T-shirt range

  • First team

    Manager reacts to Rangers loss

  • First team

    Rangers 3-1 Motherwell

  • Club

    Introducing our new historian

  • First team

    Stephen Robinson previews the trip to Rangers

  • Club

    Win a Sony surround sound system with Glen’s Vodka

  • Club

    Reliving the success of Tommy McLean

  • First team

    Storylines: Rangers v Motherwell

  • First team

    Storylines: Motherwell v Aberdeen

    Storylines: Motherwell v Aberdeen

    Motherwell host Aberdeen on Wednesday night in the run to the end of 2020.

    These are the storylines ahead of the Scottish Premiership match.

    Home form to fix

    Motherwell have one home win in their last five and are currently on a streak of four straight home losses at Fir Park.

    Making home a tough place to come for the opposition is high up the agenda, with two home victories in the league in 2020/21 recorded compared to four away.

    Closing the gap

    Aberdeen’s weekend win over Kilmarnock pulled them level on points with second-placed Celtic in the Premiership, albeit with a worse goal difference and having played two more games.

    That also left Motherwell sitting 13 points behind the Dons in the league, meaning there’s sizable ground to make up for the fifth-placed Steelmen to emulate last season’s third spot finish.

    Swinging form

    Motherwell have won the last two encounters between the two sides, picking up 3-0 and 1-0 away victories at Pittodrie.

    Last time at Fir Park, Aberdeen were convincing 3-0 winners. Indeed, you have to go back to April 2019 for the last time the home team won this fixture – a 3-1 victory for the Dons.

    A live stream of Wednesday night’s encounter between Motherwell and Aberdeen is available worldwide.

    If you’re in the UK or Republic of Ireland, a live stream of the game will be available to buy on a pay-per-view basis for £12.

    International-based supporters can watch via their usual subscription at live.motherwellfc.co.uk.

    Kick-off at Fir Park is at 6.15pm.

  • First team

    Next up: Aberdeen

    Next up: Aberdeen

    Aberdeen come calling on Wednesday night to ML1.

    If you’re in the UK or Republic of Ireland, a live stream of the game will be available to buy on a pay-per-view basis for £12.

    International-based supporters can watch via their usual subscription at live.motherwellfc.co.uk.

    Kick-off on Wednesday at Fir Park is at 6.15pm.

    Tale of the tape

    Motherwell were victorious in the first meeting between the two sides this season, running out 3-0 winners at Pittodrie.

    Goals from Mark O’Hara, Christopher Long and Bevis Mugabi saw Stephen Robinson’s men come back down the road with the three points in late September.

    In 2019/20, the Steelmen also won the last encounter between the pair 1-0 away from home. Before that, Aberdeen won 3-0 at Fir Park.

    Form guide

    Aberdeen’s 2-0 win at Kilmarnock on Sunday made for back-to-back wins for the Dons for the last time since early October.

    Their last 10 matches have brought four wins, three draws and three defeats for the side sitting in third.

    Motherwell are without a win in six, having drawn with St Johnstone away and lost to Celtic, Rangers, St Johnstone, Hibernian and St Mirren.

    At home, four defeats in a row mean the last win at Fir Park came in the 4-0 thrashing of Ross County in late October.

    Watch live

    If you’re in the UK or Republic of Ireland, a live stream of the game will be available to buy on a pay-per-view basis for £12.

    International-based supporters can watch via their usual subscription at live.motherwellfc.co.uk.

  • Club

    Shop the ML1 T-shirt range

    Shop the ML1 T-shirt range

    There’s still time to get your hands on a late Motherwel FC Christmas gift.

    We’ve launched the ML1 T-shirt range, a special run of six designs featuing parts of Fir Park which may not be immediately obvious. But if you know, you know.

    Shop the range here.


  • First team

    Manager reacts to Rangers loss

    “The scoreline doesn’t reflect how disciplined we were. Unfortunately, we made mistakes and we got punished.”

    Stephen Robinson speaks after the 3-1 loss at Rangers.

  • First team

    Rangers 3-1 Motherwell

    Rangers 3-1 Motherwell

    Motherwell put in a dogged showing at league leaders Rangers, but ultimately lost out in Glasgow.

    A double from Kemar Roofe, sandwiching a strike from Cedric Itten, saw the hosts recover from going behind to Callum Lang’s early strike.

    Manager Stephen Robinson reverted to a 3-5-2 formation to try and absorb the pressure from a Rangers side who saw a 27-game unbeaten run ended in midweek at St Mirren.

    The injured Christopher Long dropped out, with Barry Maguire moving to bench. Ricki Lamie came into defence, with Robbie Crawford added to the midfield.

    The Steelmen knew they would be in for an afternoon of having to defend but the urgency to do so increased tenfold with just five minutes on the clock.

    O’Donnell’s long throw landed back at him on the right side with five minutes on the clock. Sweeping in an exceptional low, driven ball, Lang was on hand at the back post to steer in the ball to give the visitors the lead.

    O’Hara and Watt had chances soon after but the majority of the first half was spent with Rangers in possession – but ultimately ‘Well would get in at the break a goal ahead after repelling everything which came their way.

    That defensive showing continued to hold up in the second period, as Rangers worked the ball from side to side but without making penetrative passes to seriously trouble Jordan Archer in the ‘Well goal.

    The resistance, however, did eventually break. With 73 minutes played, a ball into the box wasn’t cleared and Roofe got the break of the ball to hammer home the equaliser.

    Nine minutes later, Rangers had the lead. Tavernier’s corner from the right sailed through the front pack of bodies to the back post, where Itten was on hand to head in.

    Devante Cole, Sherwin Seedorf and Liam Polworth were introduced to try and open the game up and grab back an equaliser for Motherwell, but a further failure to clear their lines saw Roofe snatch a third deep into stoppage time.

  • Club

    Introducing our new historian

    Introducing our new historian

    We have appointed Stuart Graham as our club historian.

    Stuart’s knowledge of the history of the club is second to none and he has been heavily involved in our ongoing heritage project alongside the former players’ club over the last couple of years.

    The project has involved the collection of Well memorabilia with the aim of the development of a club museum, alongside several club tours and nostalgia evenings, with the aim of celebrating the proud history of our club.

    If you have any enquiries relevant to Stuart please contact him at historian@motherwellfc.co.uk.

  • First team

    Stephen Robinson previews the trip to Rangers

    “We have to be right at the top of our game.”

    Stephen Robinson looks ahead to the trip to Ibrox.

  • Club

    Win a Sony surround sound system with Glen’s Vodka

    Win a Sony surround sound system with Glen’s Vodka

    Missing the roar of the crowd around you as the Steelmen light up the pitch?

    Then you might just be interested in visiting the Glen’s Vodka Instagram page.

    That’s because, right now, our back of shirt sponsor is giving one very lucky fan the chance to win a Sony surround sound system, plus a bottle of Glen’s Original and a £50 Deliver voucher to enjoy while they catch every match this season.

    If you want to be in with a chance of bagging this belter of a prize, make sure you enter before 23 December.

  • Club

    Reliving the success of Tommy McLean

    Reliving the success of Tommy McLean

    When Tommy McLean switched from Greenock Morton to Motherwell in 1984, he had one major job as manager.

    Help keep the club alive.

    Relegation from the top division before his arrival had put a hole in the finances at Fir Park. McLean was tasked with the job of not only balancing the books, but trying to get the Steelmen back up as quickly as possible.

    “When I got the job, the board set me targets,” he recalled. “The main ones were keeping Motherwell alive and getting them back to the top division.

    “The club had just been relegated and they needed to bring in £100,000 from being out of the top division in the first year.

    “The first thing I had to do was sell Kenny Black and Stuart Rafferty to Dundee and Hearts. They were players I could have done with, but it was needs must. I sold them without having them even play one game for me.”

    The sales of Black and Rafferty went most of the way towards plugging the hole in the balance sheet. It also accelerated a production line of young talent which would set up a run to immortality in 1991.

    “The next target was bringing through young players,” McLean side. “When you couldn’t work in the transfer market, that’s what you had to do.

    “Youth development was the way forward. We had to build our own and bring through youngsters. That was the focal point of Motherwell.

    “That’s also what brought the money in during my tenure. Once we got back into the top division, at the end of the season we sold Gary McAllister and Ally Mauchlen to Leicester City for around £250,000.

    “You’re losing your best players. That’s how it was. It was needs must.”

    Fees generated by the sales of McAllister and Mauchlen, followed by the further sales of Andy Walker, Tom Boyd and then Phil O’Donnell after McLean departed, have left a lasting legacy at Fir Park.

    The construction of the Cooper and South Stands were part-financed by the glut of cash the youth production line brought in, helping to build infrastructure which is still crucial to today’s incumbents.

    “Every time I go by Fir Park or see it from the motorway, I see the stands,” said McLean.

    “I think ‘that was part of parcel of the players that did that’. It came from the transfer fees they brought in.”

    Despite losing talents through his early tenure at Fir Park, McLean was building the foundations of a team which would eventually achieve the prize of the Scottish Cup in 1991.

    “The first six years were mainly working on ins and outs, selling players, saving on wages and all of that,” he said.

    “The first thing we had to do was make sure the club survived. So you’d lose your better players every year and you’d start from scratch.

    “There was a challenge every year at Motherwell. There were a lot of hard times we had to come through.

    “It wasn’t until near the cup final that we started building the club up, and building the reputation that we weren’t a bad team.”

    The player who would tie it all together would arrive in August 1989. Davie Cooper had fallen out of favour at Rangers. An opportunity landed in the manager’s lap.

    “How it came about was we used to go out with the wives for a meal on Saturday night. One night there was me and my wife, Tam Forsyth and his wife, and then Davie, his wife, and his pal Ricky Jordan and his wife.

    “We were sitting at dinner and Coop left the table. Ricky said to me ‘Coop is not happy at Rangers’. Mark Walters was playing ahead of him, so he was unsettled at not playing.

    “Ricky said to me I should think about him. Think about him? I didn’t need to think about him.

    “On Monday morning, I phoned Walter Smith and said ‘I hear Davie Cooper is a bit unsettled.’. He said it was the first he’d heard of it but he would go and look at it. He phoned me back and said they would let him go. He gave me a figure and I went to John Chapman.

    “Now, John Chapman was a brilliant chairman. But whenever I mentioned a player, I would give a figure and he would say ‘we will work on it’. What he meant was to try and get it lower or get staged payments.

    “The one and only time he said it was no problem was when it was Davie Cooper. He was in the latter stages of his career, but it rejuvenated him.

    “He also made players better. He made Tam Boyd better. Phil O’Donnell better. The whole of team, really. It took them to a different level.”

    Not only that, but he helped lift the Well to the prize that had eluded them since 1952.

    While McLean’s inaugural years at Fir Park were spent trying to secure Motherwell’s very survival, the events which would follow would take even greater significance.

    Winning promotion back to the top flight at the first time of asking, but still having to balance the books, the momentum started going in the Steelmen’s direction with the arrival of Davie Cooper in 1989.

    By the time the 1990/91 Scottish Cup campaign started, Motherwell were on a 39-year hiatus from lifting the famous trophy.

    With optimism that run could be ended always present in fans’ minds, there was a dark cloud lingering over the town.

    The impending closure of the Ravenscraig steelworks threatened to decimate employment and prosperity in the town.

    McLean set his men about giving the people an escape.

    “We used Ravenscraig as a central focus during the run,” he recalled.

    “I leant on the fact people were losing their jobs, but they are still coming to Motherwell. It was imperative and important that the players gave no less than 100% for them. You can take losing if you give 100%. But there are certain things you can’t accept if the effort isn’t there.

    “For the guys from Ravenscraig, money was hard-earned and they were losing their jobs. But they were still coming to support their club. We had to give everything we possibly could back, and give them a lift on a Saturday night.

    “The players did that. They cottoned onto the idea and we used as a basis for the final.”

    To get to Hampden however, an imposing path had to be navigated.

    Aberdeen away in the first match yielded a 1-0 win, before a 4-2 home win over Falkirk. Morton lay in wait in the last eight, with a replay and penalties needed to separate the sides.

    Celtic stood between the men in claret and amber from a place in the showpiece. A 0-0 draw in the first attempt at Hampden meant for another encounter in Mount Florida, with a famous 4-2 win sending ‘Well heading back in May.

    The rest is history, of course, as Motherwell returned home with the trophy.

    “In the semi-final and the final, we scored four goals in each game,” said McLean. “We won the replay 4-2 against Celtic, and then of course won the final against Dundee United 4-3.

    “I look back on it with such pride. And of course, it also brought Motherwell European football for the first time. It put us on the map.

    “The game was a masterclass. I watch it back regularly. I take great pride from the players we brought through who did a turn for the club.

    “Jim Griffin was outstanding in the final. He was one of the better players. He was one of the unsung heroes. Him and Chris McCart.

    “People don’t realise that in that starting team, there were only two players that cost money for Motherwell. Davie Cooper and Iain Ferguson.

    “We had players who came through the system. Maxwell, Boyd, O’Donnell, Griffin. We had Dougie Arnott who cost buttons from the Juniors. It was a great achievement.”

    Remarkably, an even greater achievement could have followed in the 1993/94 season.

    The last Premier Division campaign played with a two-points-for-a-win system, ‘Well were in title contention right to the wire.

    McLean picks up the story. “We were very unfortunate,” he said. “There were three games to go and we were neck-and-neck with Aberdeen and Rangers.

    “We played Dundee United at Fir Park and lost 2-0. Then we drew 3-3 with Raith Rovers in Kirkcaldy, then lost the last game of the season to St Johnstone.

    “We took one point out of a possible six. We had such a chance. It was an unbelievable achievement for Motherwell to be in contention so late on.”

    Four points, and a vastly superior Rangers goal difference, was what separated Motherwell from breaking Rangers’ eventual nine-in-a-row Championship charge and cementing a win which would have yielded a whole other set of club legends.

    McLean would leave that summer. Recognition would follow in later years, where he was voted the club’s greatest-ever manager. A place in the Scottish Football Hall of Fame also was bestowed upon him.

    “It was great to be in their thoughts and be named the club’s greatest manager. There were also a lot of hard times we had to come through. It came eventually. The progress was steady throughout the 10 years I was there. The first six years was mainly working on selling players and saving wages. Getting rid of a full-time player and bringing a part-time player, for example. It was survival.

    “You think of the team that could have been if we could have kept everyone together.. Dysktra, Boyd, McKinnon, Martin, Kripovavic. Lambert, McAllister, O’Donnell, Cooper. Arnott or Walker and Coyne.

    “In between that you’ve got Chris McCart, Jim Griffin, Bobby Russell, Ally Mauchlen. There are a lot of players that jump out. If you could have got all of them playing together, you’d have loved to have seen it.

    “I sometimes think what my best XI would have been if I kept them all. A lot of players went through the hatch, through the system. There were a lot of good players. There were Andy Walker and Fraser Wishart after that too. Then after that it was Tam Boyd and Phil O’Donnell, although Phil left after I did.

    “There were a lot of good players. The fees we got for them helped build the stands at Motherwell.”

  • First team

    Storylines: Rangers v Motherwell

    Storylines: Rangers v Motherwell

    Motherwell travel to face Premiership leaders Rangers on Saturday afternoon.

    Here are the key headlines going into the fixture.

    Rampant Rangers

    Rangers lead the way in the Premiership by 13 points, as they look to end Celtic’s nine-year dominance.

    Steven Gerrard’s men were unbeaten in all competitions in 2020/21 for 27 games, before defeat to St Mirren in the Betfred Cup on Wednesday.

    Along the way, they’ve won 23 and drawn four.

    Motherwell needing a confidence boost

    In contrast, Stephen Robinson’s side are looking for a result which can spark confidence back into a side which has suffered morale-sapping defeats.

    The 1-0 weekend loss to St Mirren followed home defeats to St Johnstone and Hibernian. Prior to that, the last win for the boys in claret and amber came at Livingston in a 2-0 victory on 31 October.

    Long wait for victory

    Motherwell’s last victory at Ibrox famously came in the Premiership play-off final in 2015, running out 3-1 winners in Glasgow.

    The last league win for the Steelmen in the south side of the city came in May 1997, when Owen Coyle’s double brought home the three points.