Hearts - 24h on
Motherwell passed a big test on Saturday. It was a game we were expected to win and despite a scare early in the second half the job was eventually completed in style.
While many pundits insist that Aberdeen are favourites to finish best of the rest and others lavish praise on Inverness for their impressive start to the season The Mighty ‘Well have delivered a series of results that has kept them close to the top as we reach the end of the first cycle of games. It’s a state of affairs that will not cause Stuart McCall any concern. He’ll be content to stay below the radar.Gunnar in control
One player who came to notice in the best possible way was Craig Moore. Talk about a Roy of the Rovers cameo! His season started in deepest Russia when he came on as a late substitute against FC Kuban. After the game McCall highlighted the difference between the teams by pointing out that their late switch introduced Cissé while we fielded the untested teenage striker. Moore’s goal was one that Cissé would have been proud to claim.
Neilsen also started the season in Krasnodar and he had a fine game between the sticks. His impressive double save just before half time was a reminder to home fans that he has ambitions to be the first pick 'keeper. Although his match time with Motherwell has been short he has 14 international appearances to his credit this year, most recently against Kazakhstan and Austria in last week's World Cup qualifiers.
That win, despite the loss of Hollis, McFadden and Ainsworth from our small squad, keeps us on track as the first round draws to a close. McCall was correct to describe the second half as "terrific".
Next week's game adds to the growing list of bizarre kick off times - 4.05pm on a Sunday. Will this be the first time a Motherwell league game has been broadcast live on a non-subscription channel? Although a hard core of travelling fans will make the trip to Perth and stump up the £22 fee, many will choose home comfort and tune in to BBC Alba. If ever there was a time to slash gate prices to encourage attendance it must be on Sunday.
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