Brown urges defiance
Dundee manager John Brown is refusing to give up hope of avoiding relegation from as he called for continued resistance ahead of the visit of Motherwell.
The Dark Blues are sitting 13 points adrift at the foot of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League table with just seven games left between now and the end of the season.
But interim boss Brown is undefeated in four SPL games since taking over and came within several minutes of beating neighbours Dundee United on their last outing despite having Gary Irvine sent off in the opening quarter.
Brown was delighted with the fighting spirit they displayed that day and wants to see more of the same when his former Rangers team-mate Stuart McCall takes his second-top side to Dens.
He said: "We can take a lot of hope and encouragement from the derby game.
"I was really pleased with the way we played for 70 minutes with just 10 men and didn't cave in.
"That spoke volumes for the character of the lads and we'll definitely have to be like that again for the Motherwell match.
"They have lots of talented players but it's our job not to let them play to their best.
"Our fans have an important part to play as well.
"They have been excellent in recent weeks and can be like our extra man.
"Hopefully we can give them something to shout about.
"We know it's a big ask to stay up with seven games remaining but we will give it our best shot.
"The boys are buzzing at the prospect of getting back into action and this game can't come quickly enough for them to show what they can do."
Dundee midfielder Mark Kerr is available again after five months out with a knee injury and will be part of the squad but defender Gary Irvine begins a two-match suspension following his red card in the Dundee derby. Meanwhile, Steve Simonsen will make his home debut in goal.
Motherwell manager Stuart McCall has revealed the club will offer new contracts to a number of first-team players in the coming weeks after he signed a new deal - but at some of his players have told him they will move on.
McCall did not name those who have told them of their intention to leave - in case they have a change of heart - but he is hopeful they will spring some surprises in persuading some to stay.
Most of the experienced Motherwell players - Darren Randolph, Tom Hateley, Simon Ramsden, Nicky Law, Chris Humphrey, Michael Higdon, James McFadden, Steven Saunders and Omar Daley - are coming to the end of their contracts.
McCall has a "rough idea" who will stay and the completion of his own two-year deal and their secured top-six place in the Clydesdale Bank Premier League will prompt more negotiations after young players such as Stuart Carswell and Bob McHugh signed up in recent weeks.
McCall said: "I'll be confident that we'll keep a few but likewise I know that we'll lose a couple. That can go for every club in the SPL and I'm sure it will.
"We'll try to make inroads in the next few weeks on the ones we think we can offer terms to.
"Maybe some players will wait and see but we will put a time limit on it. We need to know where we are going. We will be at least able to offer contracts in the next few weeks.
"We managed to keep Jenno (Steve Jennings) a year longer than many everyone would have thought and hopefully we will manage to keep one or two longer than people think.
"We will lose a couple of players who have given the club great service and we will wish them well, but we have to focus on the here and now.
"We have had a meeting with the players today not to rest on our laurels. A lot of people think we are looking good for a European spot but we have got to continue doing what we have been doing of late."
Motherwell should have an unchanged squad for the trip to Dundee.
Central midfield pair Keith Lasley and Nicky Law went off with knocks in the 4-1 win over Hibernian two weeks ago but both are expected to travel.
Defender Fraser Kerr is the only major cause for concern with a back injury.