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Motherwell FC - A Thread For All Seasons


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10 hours ago, Casagolda said:

Moving away from the XG chat, has there been a bigger turnaround from a Motherwell player in recent years than Rickie Lamie?

This time last year I wanted rid altogether. Now I have no worries over him stepping in when required, he’s hardly put a foot wrong this season and was my motm again yesterday. 

That’s now a goal and 2 assists in his last 4 games as well. 

I'd echo that, I rocked up at this with little expectations despite our smash in grab in Aberdeen. With VanVeen suspended, Roberts (parent club), O'Hara and Ojala injured and O'Donnell putting in a shift on Monday I wasn't confident either.

Massive change in tactics yesterday, short corners - gone, 2 men inside the box for goal kick - things of the past. I had figured if we were lethal in front of goal the "here have the ball" and invite crosses tactic would surely resurface. I never envisaged Hearts to be as ineffective however, that game could have went on for 5 hours and I doubt they would have came close to scoring which was a massive surprise. Kelly was troubled only once and easily dealt with the threat.

Ginnelly's pace is something, kinda what we were promised and alluded to with Woolery but only seen it in spurts and doesn't seem as rapid when we do. The penalty claim is massive clutching at straws, the advantage was lost by poor decision making/control and Lamie looked every bit night and day for the player we had a year ago. Goss while lacking at times in midfield qualities, you can't argue with what he offers with deliveries. 

Initially I thought it was a straight red card for last man/scoring opportunity, which I thought was harsh, then I recalled he was booked a few minutes before, so it was a probably right ...... just. If there are Hearts fans upset, temper that with your little shithouser Devlin managing to get through the game without one booking when there were at least three stonewall yellows and a borderline red.

I still don't rate McGinley, I'd have Carroll every day of the week but GA doesn't feel the same and Carroll evidently feels aggrieved by avoiding the final whistle fans visit at Pittodrie. I can only guess it's because he's perceived as not being able to finish a match without walking the red mist tightrope.

Alexander will have decisions to make when Ojala is fit, who does he drop, does the club captain come in and replace Bevis who has a remarkable record when playing right back?

Considering SOD's sterling performance used as a wingback for Scotland as pointed out earlier in the week, Carroll's pace and delivery, 3 centre backs from Ojala, Sondre, Bevis and Lamie, Slattery, Goss and A.N. Other (Irish fella), Van Veen and Tony up front a 5-3-2 would be an interesting prospect but one I doubt based on 40 games under GA's belt we will ever see.

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I've taken stick on this thread before for my opinion on Lamie, but he's been absolutely fine since Alexander came in. There are several people who would still like to use his early form under Robinson as a stick to beat him with and I guess some people's opinions never change. If we are using the stats with Bevis at right back, it's also relevant to say of the games Lamie has started this season, his record is P6 W4 D1 L1. That's a pretty impressive record and despite the fact I do feel he's not as good a player as our other centre backs, I still think with his form this season, it is harsh he's found himself a sub, or even out of the squad some weeks. I don't know if the pressure of having greater competition has brought out another level in him, but it's good to see.

Also on Saturday, I thought Woolery and Maguire had the best games I've seen them have for the club. Woolery was taking on men with confidence and his delivery and decision making were much improved. Maguire imposed himself on the game and made a few key forward movements as well. 

Hopefully we can build on it at Dens on Saturday.

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I think Lamie is playing better now even than the "improved" version from the 2nd half of last season and I think he deserves huge credit for that - but I think he is also playing in a more functional defence rather than the unmitigated shitshow we had at the end of Robinson's time. Ojala and Sol are both very professional, no nonsense defenders - compare that to the way that Gun to the Head was playing at the start of last season. Feels brutal to say it after Saturday's MOTM type performance but I still wouldn't have Lamie as part of a first choice 2 at the back - but I'm perfectly happy to see him in the team now and given the way our season is panning out with disruption at the back, he'll be getting plenty of minutes.

Woolery looks to me like someone that is beginning to settle/acclimatise to our league - his decision making has been getting better, he's lasting the pace better and he is sharper on the ball when he was looking a bit ponderous at first. Time will tell, but I'm still hopeful he'll be a really decent player for us.

Also - rewatched the game on Alba and the level of niggly stuff we did to put Hearts of their game was something else - I'd have been a seething mess if it was the other way round. For connoisseurs of the bitter sounding post match interview - some of the below from Neilson will be of interest (never heard of "ratting" before)

Spoiler

“It’s direct, it’s second balls and it’s 500 miles an hour,” said Neilson. “The game was touch, tackle, free-kick, touch, tackle, throw-in, touch, tackle, corner. We just didn’t get the ball down because Motherwell ratted us for fun.

“We have to be able to handle that better. We didn’t do it and we are disappointed. I’ll be surprised if the ball was in play for more than 35 minutes in total. There was no flow in the game – corners, free-kicks, time-wasting, referee stopping play.

“It just becomes about who takes their chances. Motherwell took theirs. If you don’t take your chances you aren’t going to get anywhere.”

“I thought it was harsh,” said Neilson. “The first one, there is no contact. The boy goes down, he makes a meal of it and he [Moore] gets booked. The second one, they go shoulder-to-shoulder. The boy [Shields] knows if he goes down then the ref has a decision to make.

“It wasn’t a tackle, the leg doesn’t go across. It’s shoulder-to-shoulder, the boy goes down. To be honest, that was the story of the game. I thought they did the dark arts very well. They made it very scrappy and made it difficult for us. It wasn’t a great game, put it that way.

 

 

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17 hours ago, Neil86 said:

Probably going to be a weekly occurrence, until he does, but Watt has to sign a new deal. I'd also like us to officially announce Tierney, a lot of hype about him doing the rounds.

Bohemians last game is the FAI Cup final on Sunday coming, their final league game was a 1-1 with Sligo on Friday just there. Tierney started. Either way I'd imagine we'll hold off on any announcement until after their season is officially done.

I've no idea when LOI contracts expire mind, whether it's the end of November or end of December. Transfermarkt has his contract expiring on December 31st (and also has him joining us as his 'upcoming transfer')

I know it was pretty much been an open secret that the deal's done even before Alexander spoke about him but it still feels a bit weird he went on record when he did and also the very weird way he sort of confirmed it.

Quote

“We had an agreement with Bohemians that we would allow him to finish the season over in Ireland.

“He is an exciting young player who will come in and enhance our firepower and our quality.

“It’s been a long one, and it’s still not over the line as he still isn’t here yet.

“But we are delighted that he is coming to join us.

“He’s an attacking midfielder who can play in the front three, he creates opportunities and can score. He works his socks off and he is still only 20.

“After speaking to him quite a bit he was dead keen on the opportunity of coming to play for us so we are delighted.

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Considering we asked Aberdeen to keep Dec's transfer hush until after the season and Aberdeen made the official announcement it would be a bit too faced a few months later to do the same ..... officially.

Wonder if he's envisaged as a starter, sub or development type player.

Safe to say Parker will be off in January and interesting to see what we'll do with Roberts.

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1 hour ago, Busta Nut said:

I was hoping he was a midfielder but from what I have read recently sounds like he's gonna be considered a "forward"

Nah, he's definitely a midfielder.

There's probably an argument for him being an "attacking midfielder" or a #10 but from what I can see calling him a forward would be a stretch.

This is where he fits in for Bohemians.

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1819945485_ScreenShot2021-11-22at20_43_07.thumb.png.cc1d4a72e5309a20c04bbdd686c7f667.png

Edited by capt_oats
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52 minutes ago, Kapowzer said:

Turnbull from Wish.com

Bohemians must be upset a 20 year old in a pivotal role is leaving for nothing.

I'd imagine we'll be paying some sort of development fee rather than getting him for nothing like. I could be wrong though but given we've not been shy in paying some fees over the summer I'd be surprised if we didn't do the right thing.

He's just a wee guy, going by his Wiki he's only 5' 9" and from the sound of things he seems more like someone who plays between the lines than being an all out Turnbull-style baller.

Annoyingly there's not much by way of video highlight reels on YouTube and while you caveat the difference in leagues it's still worth noting his Transfermarkt has him contributing 15 assists for Bohemians this season. So that's something.

492242120_ScreenShot2021-11-22at23_35_57.thumb.png.c2938f1db3675b792b0a70096581803e.png

I don't know if the bold @RandomGuy. is still churning out his graphs but it'd be interesting to know how Tierney compares with Robbie Gotts in terms of his role or just generally a frame of reference for players in the Premiership in a: "If you like Ross Tierney you may also like...." sort of way.

Oh, it seems like Tierney's up for the PFAI Young Player of The Year as well.

2134441481_ScreenShot2021-11-23at00_05_52.thumb.png.cffd2254380cdb7db1669baccc9e9f99.png

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3 hours ago, capt_oats said:

He's just a wee guy, going by his Wiki he's only 5' 9" and from the sound of things he seems more like someone who plays between the lines than being an all out Turnbull-style baller.

Soooo .... Turnbull from Wish.com then?

Would be interesting how he came on to our radar, was it the new head of talent, moneyball stats software, GA sharing a dressing room with his Dad in 2005, friend of a friend? And then how we managed to secure him and convince Motherwell was the next positive step on his career, I would have thought there would be a few clubs interested in a player of his demonstrated capabilities and up for a league YPotY.

While I agree the Irish league is not the same calibre as the SPFL, if there was a 20 year old playing for East Fife, scoring 7 with 15 assists I'd be expecting our scouts to be seriously checking him out.

Key fact from those stats is goal participation 37%, over 1 in 3 ........ that's him up in Lamie territory.

Also a positive announcement on Tony's future would be a nice Christmas present for us all.

Edited by Kapowzer
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Guest superward

I'd be careful we don't build him up into the second coming of Turnbull. From a mate who has watched the irish league and seen him live, he said Tierney is defintley better than most others around him when he's seen him and very promising, an advanced midfielder. But this season has been his break through, and with the other teams/players he's up against in the league it's hard to know really how he will do elsewhere. Certainly should give us another attacking option from midfield in the second half of the season but I'd imagine he will be just that to begin with rather than being brought in to start.

Re Watt - he still has an eye on a more lucrative move down south, after the August one fell through, from what I hear. Can't blame him really as a striker about to turn 28, this next contract is probably his last chance to get a big one. 

 

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3 hours ago, superward said:

I'd be careful we don't build him up into the second coming of Turnbull. From a mate who has watched the irish league and seen him live, he said Tierney is defintley better than most others around him when he's seen him and very promising, an advanced midfielder. But this season has been his break through, and with the other teams/players he's up against in the league it's hard to know really how he will do elsewhere. Certainly should give us another attacking option from midfield in the second half of the season but I'd imagine he will be just that to begin with rather than being brought in to start.

Aye, I realise I've been posting a fair bit about him, less about hyping him and more I find him an interesting signing relative to the make up of our squad at the moment. To be clear, I've barely seen him kick a baw. As I said highlights of him specifically are pretty difficult to come by on YouTube or whatever.

What's piqued my interest is his "profile" in so much as he's pretty much the opposite of a 6ft+ lump like O'Hara and he also looks like he operates in a similar area of the park to Gotts who we were linked with before the window shut.

It kind of suggests we've been looking for someone to play a specific role - and it's a type of player that we don't actually have when you look thought our midfield options at the moment.

100% agree btw, I'd imagine he'll be coming off the bench rather than being brought in as a starter.

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Looking ahead to the weekend, our record against teams below us in the league is 5 x W, 2 x D, 1 x L.  And the Loss was against Hibs whose position in the league is unclear.

So more of the same please, avenge the Cup defeat and get a bit of a run going.

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1 minute ago, well fan for life said:

I like how we're all saying to hold our horses on Turnbull comparisons when 2 pages ago we had him compared to Tam Muller. 😅

Haha. True.

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