Motherwell FC News – July 1999
Motherwell FC News
Worrying news ahead of tomorrow’s Premier opener at Easter Road. Reports suggest that the Motherwell squad have been hit by an outbreak of glandular fever and other illnesses. We tried to get the SPL to postpone tomorrow’s game but they refused, pointing to last year’s precident with Dundee. Apparantly seven players are down, including Spencer, McMillan and Twaddle. There will be late fitness checks on several players tomorrow.
Motherwell and Dundee are quoted at 500-1 to win the league, the longest odds of all Premier League sides.
Motherwell were yesterday fined £5,000 by the SFA for their poor disciplinary record last season. We piled up six red cards and 76 bookings last term.
Michael Doesburg believes Motherwell can claim a European slot this season. Speaking in today’s Sun, the Dutch defender says:
“I believe we can have a really good season because, in my view, there isn’t much between the teams outside the Old Firm. It is very tight between the other sides. After Billy Davies arrived last season we went on a great run and were pushing for Europe. Then, a few defeats later, we were back fighting relegation. But I believe we can push for a European place, and to qualify would be a great experience. I’m also playing for my future as my contract expires next summer and I would love to stay with Motherwell. I always said one day I would like to leave Holland and play abroad and the move here has been wonderful”
The Fir Park pitch has been widened and lengthened by a couple of yards over the summer, as Billy Davies seems to think the larger playing surface will help our passing game.
Motherwell youngster Stephen Hammell was taken off with an ankle injury during last night’s game with Tranmere, but he is expected to be fit to face Hibs on Saturday. John Spencer didn’t play against Tranmere or Carlisle as he was suffering from a slight groin strain, but he should also be OK for Easter Road.
A few more details have emerged regarding last week’s closed-door friendly with Newcastle at Dalziel Park. Both clubs fielded shadow sides and the Motherwell scorers in a 2-2 draw were Dougie Ramsay and Pat Nevin.
Team: Brown, Ramsey, Hammell, Dempsie, McLaughlin, Doherty, Nevin, Lasley, Fallon, Adams, Nicholas.
Subs: Callahan for Lasley 37, McFadden for Fallon 64, Macdonald for Doherty 64, Keate for Brown 87 mins.
The SPL have announced a new league format for season 2000/2001, which will see an increase to 12 clubs. After 33 games, the SPL will split into two groups of six and the teams in each section, all retaining their exixting points totals, will play each other once more to complete a 38-game campaign.
Motherwell lost 2-0 to Tranmere Rovers tonight in their final pre-season friendly.
Motherwell won 4-1 yesterday against a very physical Carlisle side in their latest pre-season friendly. The scorers were Lee McCulloch (2), Derek Townsley and Don Goodman. In an at times bad-tempered match, Shaun Teale and Michael Doesburg were both asked to leave the field by the referee, and Steve McMillan, Jamie McGowan and Derek Townsely were all taken off injured. Studs was stretchered off with a hip knock but isn’t as badly injured as was thought at first, and he should be OK for Saturday’s Premier opener at Easter Road.
Team: Goram, Doesburg, McMillan, Teale, Thomas, Nicholas, Valakari, Brannan, Townsley, McCulloch, Goodman.
Subs: McGowan, Adams, Craigan, Ramsay, Halliday.
New signing Kevin Twaddle could be out for up to six months after being diagnosed with glandular fever. Kevin, who orginally feared he might have cancer, has missed the entire pre-season and has been warned by doctors not to do any training until he has been given the all-clear.
Motherwell will have their own dedicated page on Teletext next season, page 163 on C4.
Reports suggest that Motherwell played a closed door game against Newcastle at Dalziel Park yesterday, the match finishing 2-2.
Billy Davies says he is satisfied with his side’s pre-season build-up, and although the players are still short of peak fitness, he is happy with the current progress.
Former ‘Well player Andy Walker has signed for Carlisle and may well make his debut against us in tomorrow’s friendly. He is likely to be playing alongside Motherwell free Greig Miller, who is currently on trial with the English side.
Despite being freed as a player, Mickey Weir is staying at Fir Park to coach the under-21s along with Miodrag Krivokapic. The former Hibs star was spotted at Hampden on Wednesday night.
It appears as though Martyn Corrigan has not actually signed for Motherwell. It was reported that Falkirk were prepared to go to a tribunial for the player, but apparently it was all paper talk and Motherwell were never interested in him!
One player who has definitely signed is Kevin Twaddle, although he is currently suffering from a virus and has been unable to take part in any pre-season games thus far.
Motherwell defeated Queen’s Park 4-0 in tonight’s friendly at Hampden. Shaun Teale (pen), Lee McCulloch (2) and Derek Adams were the scorers.
Team (from memory): Goram (Woods), Doesburg, McMillan, Teale, Thomas, Brannan (Craigan), Spencer (Matthaei), Valakari, Townsley (Nicholas), McCulloch, Goodman (Adams 45).
Admission prices for Saturday’s friendly are Carlisle are £8 (£3 consession) for the stand, £5 (£2) for the terracing.
Motherwell rounded off their pre-season tour of Sweden last night with a 5-0 victory over Huskvarnaff. Scorers were McCulloch (2), Halliday, Goodman, Teale (pen).
Motherwell free Greig Miller has begun a two-week trial with Carlisle.
Motherwell beat IK Tord 9-0 (yes, NINE-nil) in the second match of their pre-season tour of Sweden last night. New signing Derek Townsley is believed to have scored four, while Halliday, Goodman and McCulloch also got on the scoresheet.
Greig Denham decided not to join his team-mates in Sweden, and instead is staying in Scotland to continue his fight back to full fitness. Greig, who ended 10 months on the sidelines when he played in a reserve game against Kilmarnock this week, aims to be back in first team action around September.
Andy Goram has been named as the new club captain. Shaun Teale was skipper last season but apparently he’s happy to hand over the responsibility. The Goalie captained the side on a few occassions last term and obviously impressed the management team with the way he handled it.
Motherwell defeated Jonkoping Sadraif 3-0 last night in the first game of their pre-season tour of Sweden. The scorers were McCulloch, Goodman and Halliday.
In today’s Sun, Ian Ross says it was a huge wrench to leave Motherwell. Ian, who has signed a two-year contract with St Mirren, spent seven years at Fir Park before leaving for free, despite having a year remaining on his contract. He said:
“I spent the last three seasons in the ‘Well first team but I did not play much towards the end, which was disappointing. I knew I had to look at my future. I still had a year of my contract left, but the clubs came to an agreement to move me.”
Ian made his debut for St Mirren last night when he played for 60 mins of their friendly against Rangers.
In a recent interview with Teletext, John Spencer claims the club’s primary aim for the new season is to avoid relegation, although the players feel they can challange for a European place. Spenny also says the state of the pitch and the massive changes at Fir Park took their toll on the team’s performances last season.
The SPL have announced that the team finishing bottom of the Premier League next season will face the third team in Division One in a play-off for promotion/relegation.
Eddie May claims in this morning’s papers that Motherwell forced him to sign a legal document preventing him from saying anything about his reasons for leaving the club, on threat of court action. He said:
“If I had not signed that document I would have spent the next year playing for the reserves and that was the last thing I wanted. When I got a game for the first team it was at right back – a position I hated – but the expensive players like John Spencer had to be played. Things started to go wrong for me when Billy Davies took over. However, I am muzzled from telling the whole story or I could end up in court.”
New signings Kevin Twaddle and Derek Townsley joined up with their new team mates on Monday when the squad returned to begin pre-season training. Greig Denham, who has been out for almost a year with a cruiciate ligament injury, is back for the full pre-season and was joined by Shaun Teale, who missed the final few games of last season with a broken jaw. After training this week, the squad head to Sweden for a three-game tour.
Reports suggest that Ian Ross has signed for St Mirren.
Teletext reports that Eddie May has agreed terms with Dunfermline and will sign a two-year contract on Monday. Pars manager Dick Capmbell must have been thinking about someone else when he said:
“He is just the player I need. His greatest strength is his ability to score goals from the middle of the park.”
Apparently the friendly against Airdrie will go ahead on Friday October 8.
Freed Motherwell striker Herve Bacque has joined Livingston on a two-week trial. Meanwhile, Eddie May has started pre-season training with Dunfermline and looks set to sign for the East End Park club.
Rumours suggest that Motherwell could play Airdrie in October to mark the official opening of their new Shyberry Excelsior Stadium.
Make sure you enter the new Motherwell Sweepstake!
For information on a new Motherwell Prediction League which will run next season, click here.
Motherwell have completed the signing of full-back Martyn Corrigan from Falkirk. The 21-year-old has agreed terms although the clubs could not agree on a transfer fee, and therefore a tribunal will be required.
Steve McMillan has signed a two-year extention to his contract which will keep him at Fir Park until at least 2002.
Two Motherwell games will be screened live by SKY during the first half of the season. Our game at Ibrox, originally scheduled for Saturday August 14, will now take place the following day at 6.05pm, and our home match with Hearts on September 18 has now been re-scheduled for Monday September 20.
Motherwell will be launching a third strip next season. The new kit will be available from September.
The SFL have re-scheduled this season’s League Cup ties, and Motherwell’s match against either Raith or Stranraer will now take place on the 17th or 18th of August. If we face Raith we will almost certainly come face-to-face with former player Alex Burns, who has recently signed for the Starks Park side.
Billy Davies has dismissed rumours linking the club with Rangers’ Derek McInnes.
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