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The African

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The African last won the day on December 25 2020

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394 Hugh Sproat

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About The African

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  • Birthday 02/04/1967

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  1. Brian Wright was definitely at Hamilton before us. Are you perhaps mixing him up with Brian Martin?
  2. I think I enjoyed the first game more, in the sense that proving that they were sh*t* was more satisfying than just confirming it. Following it from over here, one of the best aspects was sticking it right up the Scottish sporting press and media. They didn't give us a hope in hell, and were still talking up Rangers chances after the first leg. Apparently the fact that they weren't good enough to get promotion via winning the Championship was just forgotten and the standard line of old firm invincibility was trotted out.
  3. Honourable mention for Liam Kelly, whose aground excellence has me a huge difference, but Tony Watt for me also. If he could somehow add a few extra goals, he would be attracting interest from much bigger clubs than us.
  4. How about the Ferrier and Stevenson stand? Historically they seem to have always been bracketed together as players. From a more recent vintage, I would not have an issue with naming it after Joe Wark. As others have said, too many worthy contenders, not enough stands.
  5. Young looks a decent goalkeeper, and he could be the sort of player who might be nterested in a move to a club like ours. In his mid thirties though, so not really a long term prospect or likely for us to develop and sell on. I think that Kelly is probably beyond our budget, though another loan could be an option, but I have always been an admirer of Trevor Carson and hope that he can make a successful recovery and return to our first team.
  6. I think that the lack of any under 20 or reserve team fixtures this season has made it even harder for young players to develop and make a case for being given their chance in the first team. Normally I am an advocate for giving youth their chance, but the lack of an intermediate level for them to work on and showcase their talents is just another minor problem caused by the pandemic. Hopefully it is just an abstract issue for a limited period and we can continue to develop the core of our team for the future. As for the remaining fixtures, let's just play the best team we have, try and finish as high up the table as possible, and then consign this season to the dustbin of history where, from our perspective, it rightfully belongs.
  7. There is a fairly fine line between "better" and "different". Facilities are safer and that has to be a good thing. Crowds have gone down though, as the price/cost of football has increased, to at least partly pay for these changes The changes in society throughout this time cannot be discounted with regard to how they changed the match day experience - from large scale unemployment to the increase in other competing leisure activities, from a greater understanding of health and safety risks to a decreased sense of local community and the corresponding link to local sporting teams. The question of whether players were better is already subjective before you take into account any changes in coaching, fitness and speed. Whilst agreeing that their have been advances in all these areas, I do tend to think that the improvement in these areas has not necessarily resulted in an improved final product. Another possible issue in any comparison can be the nature of the evidence available. In the 1970s only two games a week were televised. Motherwell might only be on television ten times a year. Now every match is just about available and we see every excruciating moment if we are braver enough, this season anyway. I am also of the opinion that this season, without crowds through Covid restrictions, deserves to be discounted. Yes, we have played pretty dreadfully, but the games without crowds are just so lacking in atmosphere and spectacle that they should be seen as a, hopefully short lived, aberration.
  8. Well yes, if you want to pick and choose your criteria, there was certainly plenty to moan about back then and some change was necessary. Grounds are safer, marginally nicer, quieter and more expensive places to be. The pitches were obviously much worse and, I'd argue, the players were better, but less well remunerated. On a broader level, it is probably unfair to compare ifferent footballing periods without an understanding of the societal changes that have occurred, otherwise the lack of context makes any such comparison both pointless and meaningless.
  9. I have watched that one a few times and it brings back many happy memories. As the greedmongers and money men who now think they can control the game play their high stakes game of chicken, it is nice to be reminded of simpler times and to remember the old adage, " things change, but not necessarily for the better".
  10. While the extra cash from finishing 7th/8th etc would undoubtedly be welcome, the kudos for having done so is pretty worthless. Now that we are, to all intents and purposes, safe from the threat of relegation, all the energies of the club must be focused on making next season a marked improvement on this one. It has been a horrible season in the most trying of circumstances for everyone. I will be glad to see the back of it and hope for better, all round, in the seasons to come. I know some will think that I am tempting fate with the assumption that we will not go down, but if we do somehow manage to find ourselves in the Championship next season, it will not only be a remarkable feat from here, but we will be truly deserving of our fate.
  11. Hopefully we realise that a win here will go a long way towards the arithmetic safety we all crave. A loss here and we suddenly face a dodgy trip to Hamilton where a further defeat coukd see us right back in the mire. Knowing us, the best we will achieve is a point, just to keep us dangling over the edge for a few more weeks.
  12. The key to our performance will be whether or not Tony Watt is fit, and how we cope if he doesn't make it. I certainly don't think we should be taking any risks with him, especially on a plastic pitch. He has become too important to s for us to risk ending his season now. If Cole and Roberts could work together as a pair, I could see some sense in playing Gallagher in a back three/ five, but I have my doubts about this, and also worry that nobody in our midfield would be capable of playing further up the field to provide the link play and make the runs that are what Watt has been doing so well. Right now, once again, I'd be happy with a point.
  13. Any kind of win would be a fantastic result. Killie are playing for survival and must realise that they have to get something out of this match. Right now, I'd be more than happy to take a point and move on to the post split fixtures with a clear idea of what we need to achieve to ensure top league football for another season.
  14. No need to get too clever with selection. If they are all fit and available the team that performed well at Easter Road deserve the chance to back up that performance with a repeat.
  15. Very sad news. Like many on here, I am too young to remember him as a player, but the fact that my father was in awe of him would be enough to convince me of his status as a legend. I do remember how excited my Dad was when he returned to the club as manager and it does seem a real shame that his spell in charge was short lived. I remember St John saying that the move to Portsmouth was a mistake, mainly because he was lmisled about the proposed future for that club. I assume that most of the media will be full of his time at Liverpool and his work as a pundit, but his significance for our club cannot be underestimated. RIP, and my thoughts and respect are with his family and friends. In closing, I would add one thing. During his work as an expert/ pundit over the years, where he was both inciteful and honest ( and so much more than just a comic foil for Jimmy Greaves) you were never unaware that he was a Scotland man, a Liverpool man, a Motherwell man.

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