Motherwell V Aberdeen at Fir Park Stadium : Match Preview
Motherwell V Aberdeen - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game live.
All's Well for Sutton
Motherwell striker John Sutton feels familiarity has bred the goalscoring spree that gives Stuart McCall's side the chance to move second in the Scottish Premiership on Saturday.
Before last weekend's 3-0 defeat at Celtic Park, Motherwell had scored 16 goals in six consecutive victories and they can leapfrog Aberdeen if they beat the Dons at Fir Park.
Motherwell had a negative goal difference before that winning run and Sutton feels they finally clicked in December.
"There were a lot of new players and people run into form and out of form a little bit," said Sutton, who has scored 11 goals after returning from Hearts in the summer.
"But getting to know each other's game has certainly helped and hopefully that will put us in good stead for the future.
"We were all disappointed with the Celtic game. Obviously they are a good team but, with the run we were on, we would have liked to have done a little bit better. Hopefully we can put it right this Saturday.
"But the manner of the victories in the winning run was pleasing. There were a few games where we won by three or four and they were a lot more convincing than what we were doing earlier in the season.
"So I think everyone at the club is going into the game with a bit of confidence. It's a really good game to look forward to because I'm sure Aberdeen will bring a good crowd down and we are in front of our home support."
Like Sutton and fellow striker Henri Anier, versatile forward player James McFadden and wide men Iain Vigurs and Lionel Ainsworth were all on target and on form during that winning run.
"I think over that period all our forward players have played pretty well, whether it be Faddy, Henri, Lionel or Vigs," Sutton said.
"We have certainly started creating a bit more and scoring more goals. Earlier in the season we were grinding out results whereas recently we have created more clear-cut chances.
"But it's always a difficult one against Aberdeen. Derek McInnes's teams have always been very well-organised and it's a challenge for us to try to carve them open."
Motherwell have an unchanged squad for the Scottish Premiership top-three clash.
Simon Ramsden (knee), Lee Hollis (ankle) and Lee Erwin (knee) remain on the sidelines.
Fraser Kerr is pushing for a start after making his comeback from a hamstring injury from the bench at Celtic Park last weekend, while under-20s midfielder Dom Thomas could join the squad.
New signing Adam Rooney will go straight into the Aberdeen squad as they travel to Motherwell hoping to extend their lead over the Steelmen in second place.
The former Inverness striker has returned to Scotland following his release by Oldham and his first job as a Dons player will be to hold off the Fir Park outfit as they look to bridge a one-point gap separating the sides.
Boss Derek McInnes' only absentee is left-back Clark Robertson (knee).
McInnes has told his players he wants to see their fighting spirit as they look to stretch their narrow lead over Motherwell.
The Dons currently sit second in the Scottish Premiership, just a point ahead of Stuart McCall's Steelmen having played a game more.
They missed the chance to extended that advantage last week as they lost 1-0 at home to Inverness while the Fir Park side were losing 3-0 at Celtic.
Now McInnes has ordered his troops to prove their mettle when they take on their rivals in Lanarkshire on Saturday.
He told RedTV: "It's another very important game and whenever we've had a disappointing result, as we did last week, it's crucial we show that resilience to come back fighting again and get back to winning ways.
"To do that we will need a strong performance against Motherwell. They beat us here not so long ago so I don't think there will be any real surprises when we look at each other. We will know their team, they will know ours, and we also know what we are going to get is a really competitive match. It's a match that's very important."
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