MOTHERWELL fans take pride in the fact their club has the third longest run in Scotland’s top flight, bettered only by Celtic and Aberdeen.
However, their 32 year reign is under threat following a run of dismal results and performances that leave the Fir Park club just two points above second bottom Inverness and just three above bottom side, and Lanarkshire rivals, Hamilton Accies.
Going into February, ‘Well were in the top six and were confident of pulling away from their rivals in the congested 7Th to 12th spots in the table to preserve that status. Unfortunately, a combination of horrific defending and indiscipline on the pitch, has seen the team lose their last four League games, shipping 17 goals in the process.
The biggest concern for Motherwell fans is the behaviour of their Manager Mark McGhee, which has resulted in some fans calling for his head.
McGhee’s post match rants continuously blaming the referees, and subsequent threats of legal action over the so-called victimisation treatment he’s been receiving, is cringeworthy and it’s evident that this is affecting his team given their recent disciplinary issues and inept performances.
Amongst the four game losing streak, there have been two thumping defeats in particular that have prompted protests for McGhee to lose his job. The first of those was particularly damning for McGhee as he saw his side go down 7-2 at Aberdeen, who’s support took great pleasure in ridiculing the once Pittodrie hero given his disgusting dismissal of the clubs record 9-0 defeat to his boyhood heroes Celtic, during his diabolical spell as Dons Manager, as “just three points”.
During the game, with his side 4-0 down at the time, he was sent to the stand by the fourth official, leading to the famous social media video with a Dons fan, and his reaction to the defeat was “it wasn’t a horrible experience, we lost a game of football!” The words echo his shocking post-Celtic humiliation over six years earlier and would not have went down well with the Fir Park faithful, especially those who made the long journey on a cold Wednesday night to endure a dismal result for the club. Once again, he showed complete disrespect for those who pay his wages.
The second humiliation came on Saturday at home to fellow relegation/top six rivals Dundee, who left Fir Park with a resounding 5-1 victory. Losing to a side who’d only won two previous away matches all season in such a manner was hard for the Motherwell fans to take, some of whom left at half time to stage a protest demanding the removal of Mark McGhee, with a few more joining them post-match.
Saturday’s Dundee demolition saw McGhee state the obvious, saying his side were too easy to score against. That’s been the problem all season for a side who’ve leaked the most goals in the Premiership this season, and it’s McGhee’s job to rectify that.
He pinpoints the loss of Stevie Hammell and Stephen McManus having an affect at the weekend but that’s just one game, McManus in particular has been dreadful all season and is a complete shadow of the player who was a mainstray in the Celtic side ten years ago that were getting ready to face AC Milan in the Champions League. The fact is Motherwell have been poor at the back all season and that’s why they are in the predicament they’re in.
Having started the month in the top six, ‘Well are now tenth and wary of the form of Inverness, who’ve picked up four points in their last two games, and need to halt their alarming run of form quickly if they are to preserve their top flight for a 33rd season.
They go to a Kilmarnock side this weekend, who have come off the back of a fine win at St Johnstone, thus strengthening Lee McCulloch’s chances of landing their Managers position on a permanent basis. It’s a game Motherwell need to dig out a result to halt the slide and give them the boost they need to ease their relegation worries.
For Mark McGhee, he needs to stop the witch hunt nonsense and sort the disciplinary issues, which all stem from his antics, otherwise Motherwell’s long stay in the top flight could be in big danger of ending this season, and he’ll be looking for another job if that happens.