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The Great Rebuild 2017'18

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Meanwhile back in the real world, very few of the young players we have will make the step up, crowds are down therefore revenue is down...

 

I was told a few pages back - and I've no reason to doubt thisGRAEME's facts - that crowds are actually up and there's never been more money coming into the Scottish game. Apparently, though, the SFPL will still never be able to afford that new-fangled goal line technology, much to Neil Lennon's dismay.

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For the sake of adding to the list, Ben Hall and Lee Erwin would probably have still been part of the squad had they not decided to depart. Suppose Robbie Leitch could argue to be on that list too.

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I don't mean to be getting at you particularly, but it's just the same moan that every football fan in Scotland over 50 seems to have, whether as editors of papers or a moaners in the pub, 'It was brilliant before, not now!', it's pretty boring from them, and it's pretty boring here too.

 

No individual offence taken, and FWIW, I wasn't trying to make the point that old duffers like me lived through some golden age and everything was better in that land of lost content, because that would be bollocks. However, if it's OK with you - and despite my advancing age - I'll continue to offer the occasional opinion from time to time and if you find it boring I won't lose too much sleep over that.

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What our club policy has done is overload the club with an awful standard of pro footballer, on higher wages than U20s kids would get, for absolutely no gain. Sure you can argue that we have sold Johnson, Heneghan, Moult but what cost? Terrible season after terrible season? For every player sold, we've been landed with 5 or 6 awful players who, over the course of a season drag the actually football we all watch down to an unacceptable level. I used the phrase yesterday but it sums us up to a tee, Motherwell FC has become a revolving door of utter dross since the appointment of Barraclough.

 

It's almost as if Motherwell football club has forgotten what it is supposed to be. To hell with football, up with human commodity dealing. Finish 10th, play poor football with the worst standard of footballer we've ever had and make £500,000 in transfers. Job done. That's our mentality these days. It stinks.

 

An interesting view. What I would say though is that I think the mentality/policy, call it what you will, has to be put in some kind of context in terms of where we are as a club - and equally signficant to add to that, where we were as a club, and where we're we hope to get to as a club.

 

You paint it as a dark, cold, emotionless policy. I rather suspect those in charge would feel a continuation of heavy losses and growing debt which nobody was remotely interested in taking on as long term project as a pretty dark and horrible place to be too.

 

So for the very survival and restructuring of the club as a whole I can't argue too much with the policy they've adopted over the past two or three years. And let's be clear, whilst I suspect you've pulled the £500k figure out of the air, the policy has brought in a good more than that.

 

There are two very important words in your post are these days.

 

I, and suspect most 'Well fans would be with you all the way that we would prefer a better balance of home grown players alongside the calculated gambles and the journeyman pros.

 

I would like to think that we'll evolve in that direction over time. Certainly when Robinson was appointed there was talk of such, of a short-term goal - achieved in us staying up, a short-mid term approach of rebuilding a squad and thereafter building a squad for the longer term built upon what by then would hopefully be a regular stream of talent from the youths.

 

If, with each passing season we go further and further down the line of paying off Boyle and Hutchison and begin to accumulate reserves for ourselves there should in theory be less reason for us to take quite so many of the calculated gambles and have more focus on bringing through our own.

 

If it proves to be the case that several years from now we're still not seeing youngsters make up the bulk of the squad then the concerns you raise will have been fully validated. For now though whilst I would still like to see more of own given their opportunity I can fully appreciate why the policy is as it is and what the drivers for it are.

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An interesting view. What I would say though is that I think the mentality/policy, call it what you will, has to be put in some kind of context in terms of where we are as a club - and equally signficant to add to that, where we were as a club, and where we're we hope to get to as a club.

 

You paint it as a dark, cold, emotionless policy. I rather suspect those in charge would feel a continuation of heavy losses and growing debt which nobody was remotely interested in taking on as long term project as a pretty dark and horrible place to be too.

 

So for the very survival and restructuring of the club as a whole I can't argue too much with the policy they've adopted over the past two or three years. And let's be clear, whilst I suspect you've pulled the £500k figure out of the air, the policy has brought in a good more than that.

 

There are two very important words in your post are these days.

 

I, and suspect most 'Well fans would be with you all the way that we would prefer a better balance of home grown players alongside the calculated gambles and the journeyman pros.

 

I would like to think that we'll evolve in that direction over time. Certainly when Robinson was appointed there was talk of such, of a short-term goal - achieved in us staying up, a short-mid term approach of rebuilding a squad and thereafter building a squad for the longer term built upon what by then would hopefully be a regular stream of talent from the youths.

 

If, with each passing season we go further and further down the line of paying off Boyle and Hutchison and begin to accumulate reserves for ourselves there should in theory be less reason for us to take quite so many of the calculated gambles and have more focus on bringing through our own.

 

If it proves to be the case that several years from now we're still not seeing youngsters make up the bulk of the squad then the concerns you raise will have been fully validated. For now though whilst I would still like to see more of own given their opportunity I can fully appreciate why the policy is as it is and what the drivers for it are.

One of the most sensible and best posts Iv read on here

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Heneghan has just posted on his Instagram a picture of himself from a match v Rangers - looks likely he will be back.

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Heneghan has just posted on his Instagram a picture of himself from a match v Rangers - looks likely he will be back.

Seems like it judging by the photo and the wee emojis. It was liked by plenty of the current players and Alan Burrows too.

 

I thought we did amazingly to get a fee for Ben when he was here, I wasnt his biggest fan but would be happy to see him back on loan to provide competition/cover for Kipre.

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Thought we did well to get what we did for him but he is still the young player with lots of potential that was linked with rangers,Sunderland,Burnley,norwhich etc a few months ago.

 

Wee loan deal to put himself back in the shop window but if he does a job for us I dont mind at all

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So what exactly should Motherwell football club be, in your perfect world we would develop our own players from a young age, they would all make the grade and we would be playing silky soccer at all times and doing well, the crowds would be fantastic lots of revenue streams so we would not need the transfer cash.

 

Meanwhile back in the real world, very few of the young players we have will make the step up, crowds are down therefore revenue is down so we need to wheel and deal in the transfer market to generate some much needed income that will be used to buy players to make up for the lack of homegrown talent. This is Motherwell in 2018, this is how we operate, and so far this season we had a great start and a trio to a major cup final so we are not doing too bad, granted we are on a feckin poor run currently but that will end and we will push on for a top 6 finish.

 

Where did I say "they would all make the grade" or we would be playing "silky soccer at all times" or anything else.

 

Sometimes when the 'post administration team' is brought up fans look at it through rosy lens. There was some terrible stuff played. One of the worst ever performances I can remember from a Motherwell team was away to Partick that season.

 

But you know what, in the long run it was building to something and the club benefited. Maybe Willie Kinniburgh, Shaun Fagan and Dougie Ramsay weren't exactly Motherwell greats but we produced very good players that went on to put up hundreds of appearances for the club and others who were sold for transfer fees we'd take now, close to 20 years later.

 

And there was an actual sense of progress through the Butcher years and beyond, clawing our way up the league, becoming a mid table team and then going beyond that, just the same way as there was when we came up from Division One under MacLean. There were tough, tough seasons then but there was a sense that we were actually going somewhere. Adding quality players, Bobby Russell, Davie Cooper, year on year and getting better albeit with bumps along the way. I just don't get that feeling now. We are going round and round in circles.

 

Even at the nadir of my time as a supporter which was the period between the McLeish dismantlement and administration there was at least a plan, even if it was the hopelessly misguided Lanarkshire United vision of John Boyle with all it's attendant investment and hoopla.

 

I've never been all about results, either good or bad. The Motherwell team of my youth hardly ever won and I went home happy if Stevie Cowan scored a goal. But there has to be something underpinning the whole thing.

 

I'm happy to take a step backwards to ultimately go forward but when we lose now it's like a game of snakes and ladders where we just end up back at the beginning again with absolutely no progress and before you know it a whole season has past, another managers gone, another whole new squad is being assembled and we hear all the same chat.

 

Those seasons are beginning to mount up now.

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Dunno. Ask him you creep?

Now now.

 

A former player puts a picture of himself in a well top celebrating, with an egg timer and a football on a public social media platform. His manager has said he expects him to go out on loan. It's there to be seen and commented on

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Just look at the home grown players in the Accies squad that beat us last time out.

 

Scott McMann, 21 years old, 56 appearances

Greg Docherty, 21 years old, 108 appearances

Darren Lyon, 22 years old, 51 appearances

Ali Crawford, 26 years old, 268 appearances

Grant Gillespie, 26 years old, 236 apperances

Ross Cunningham, 19 years old, 9 appearances

Shaun Want, 20 years old, 3 appearances

 

And our team

 

Ross MacLean, 20 years old, 15 appearances

Allan Campbell, 19 years old, 25 appearances

Adam Livingston, 19 years old, 2 apperances

 

In the last 4 seasons, Accies have finished - 7th, 10th, 11th and are currently 9th.

We have finished - 11th, 5th, 9th and are currently 8th.

 

It's not as if our policy of completely ignoring youth development in favour of 'finding the English lower league gem' has us playing at some stellar level way beyond Accies. We are essentially playing at the same level with very little between the teams (4 points last season, this season currently 1 point) with one play off appearance each in the last four seasons and 7 out of 8 bottom six finishes combined.

 

What our club policy has done is overload the club with an awful standard of pro footballer, on higher wages than U20s kids would get, for absolutely no gain. Sure you can argue that we have sold Johnson, Heneghan, Moult but what cost? Terrible season after terrible season? For every player sold, we've been landed with 5 or 6 awful players who, over the course of a season drag the actually football we all watch down to an unacceptable level. I used the phrase yesterday but it sums us up to a tee, Motherwell FC has become a revolving door of utter dross since the appointment of Barraclough.

 

It's almost as if Motherwell football club has forgotten what it is supposed to be. To hell with football, up with human commodity dealing. Finish 10th, play poor football with the worst standard of footballer we've ever had and make £500,000 in transfers. Job done. That's our mentality these days. It stinks.

 

Now whether academy players should come through the ranks and then be exposed to Robinson's dinosaur football is another question.....anyway in the meantime, managers last a year and every season is a Great Rebuild season.

One of the most emotive posts I've read on here in years so well done. Its certainly sparked debate which is great. However I don't think all of it is strictly factual. Some good rebuttals too from the likes Of Spiderpig, Andy P and Welldaft.

 

You've missed out Stevie Hammell's presence on Saturday so we ought to take that into account. Taking into this year's position so far, we've finished above them in 3 years out of 4. We haven't completely ignored youth development when you take into account lads like Cadden, Campbell, Erwin and Hall, so thats being slightly unkind. After the Baraclough era, Robbo was charged with keeping us up and developing youth. I'd argue he's still battling to keep us up and is only 6 months into the rebuilding programme. I would argue that our club has gained from its current recruitment policy. All managers have thier fair share of failures. Tommy Maclean is often credited as being one of most astute managers ever in the transfer market but even he signed his fair amount of failures. Yes he signed household names such as Ray Blair, Bobby Carberry, Brian Wright, Jamie Doyle, John Gardiner, Gordon Mair.. I won't go on. Under the current policy we've made maybe twice or three times the £500K you quote.

 

I simply don't agree that currently we have the worst quality of footballer we've ever had. I don't know how old you are but we've had far worse teams in the past. What about the Alex McLeish team of the late 90s? If thats not enough what about harri kampmann's side of the late 90s? Then there's Ally MacLeod's team of the late 70s. Bobby Howitt's team of the late 60s which got relegated from a league of 18 teams was as poor as I can recall.

 

You use the term "human commodity dealing" which conjures up visions in my mind of modern day slavery and human trafficking. This could apply to the whole footballing world. Its a short career but most senior footballers do very well out of it thanks very much. It could equally apply to Accies' much and rightly lauded youth scheme which you cite. I can assure you that that scheme, in common with most others is very cutthroat and ruthless.

 

Hamilton may field a commendable amount of young players but they certainly don't play good football. In fact its much worse than ours. The young players they bring through are very streetwise indeed. Given our resources, we are never going to do well in the top league by playing good football alone. To do well i.e. win a top six place or reach a cup final we have to play a more mundane brand of boring football as do most of our direct competitors such as St Johnstone, who have done so very successfully. Don't forget too that a good few of wee Tommy's early teams were as boring as hell to watch; in those days were we quite content to defend in depth, attack twice and win by 1-0.

 

We should be grateful for what we've got, although thats not to say things can't be improved upon.

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One of the most emotive posts I've read on here in years so well done. Its certainly sparked debate which is great. However I don't think all of it is strictly factual. Some good rebuttals too from the likes Of Spiderpig, Andy P and Welldaft.

 

You've missed out Stevie Hammell's presence on Saturday so we ought to take that into account. Taking into this year's position so far, we've finished above them in 3 years out of 4. We haven't completely ignored youth development when you take into account lads like Cadden, Campbell, Erwin and Hall, so thats being slightly unkind. After the Baraclough era, Robbo was charged with keeping us up and developing youth. I'd argue he's still battling to keep us up and is only 6 months into the rebuilding programme. I would argue that our club has gained from its current recruitment policy. All managers have thier fair share of failures. Tommy Maclean is often credited as being one of most astute managers ever in the transfer market but even he signed his fair amount of failures. Yes he signed household names such as Ray Blair, Bobby Carberry, Brian Wright, Jamie Doyle, John Gardiner, Gordon Mair.. I won't go on. Under the current policy we've made maybe twice or three times the £500K you quote.

 

I simply don't agree that currently we have the worst quality of footballer we've ever had. I don't know how old you are but we've had far worse teams in the past. What about the Alex McLeish team of the late 90s? If thats not enough what about harri kampmann's side of the late 90s? Then there's Ally MacLeod's team of the late 70s. Bobby Howitt's team of the late 60s which got relegated from a league of 18 teams was as poor as I can recall.

 

You use the term "human commodity dealing" which conjures up visions in my mind of modern day slavery and human trafficking. This could apply to the whole footballing world. Its a short career but most senior footballers do very well out of it thanks very much. It could equally apply to Accies' much and rightly lauded youth scheme which you cite. I can assure you that that scheme, in common with most others is very cutthroat and ruthless.

 

Hamilton may field a commendable amount of young players but they certainly don't play good football. In fact its much worse than ours. The young players they bring through are very streetwise indeed. Given our resources, we are never going to do well in the top league by playing good football alone. To do well i.e. win a top six place or reach a cup final we have to play a more mundane brand of boring football as do most of our direct competitors such as St Johnstone, who have done so very successfully. Don't forget too that a good few of wee Tommy's early teams were as boring as hell to watch; in those days were we quite content to defend in depth, attack twice and win by 1-0.

 

We should be grateful for what we've got, although thats not to say things can't be improved upon.

 

I said elsewhere that Stevie Hammell belongs to a different era of youth development in our clubs history. You couldn't really defend our current policy towards youth by bringing Hammell into it when he made his debut in the 1990s.

 

Also when I made the comparisons between our squad and Hamilton's it was a snap shot. I didn't include quite a few other Hamilton players who didn't feature on Saturday who have also come through their ranks. For instance Michael Devlin who is a long term injury is 24 years old and has 147 appearances. If I'd done so it would have only gone to contrast further the difference between the clubs.

 

You raise Cadden and Hall. That for me was the best period in Motherwell's recent history. We won five games on the trot giving youth a chance and I wish we'd continued down that route.

 

As for bringing up poor players from the past, fine, I did that myself. On the flip side of that we've had some very good players in our team recently. Louis Moult for me developed into one of the best strikers we've had in my 30+ years of watching the team. Currently Carson is the best goalkeeper we've had since Darren Randolph. But overall the quality of the squads over an extended period of, say four or so seasons, has been very poor. We aren't really discussing individuals, it's the overall quality that is lacking. My main criticism over the season is that we can't get by on 4 or 5 guys doing all the work.

 

You mentioned McLeish and Kampman. I agree. I described that period as the nadir of my time as a supporter. Whether that was the worst team or this one is is down to opinion but for me it feels a lot like that period with a huge roster of non entities coming and going, constant managerial changes and the club distinctly lacking in any direction or leadership. It took near extinction to charge the club back up again and give us some direction, I'd hope we don't need to go that far towards the edge before we can rediscover that impetus.

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Ironically (or maybe not), a lot of our current issues stem from our period of recent success. From what guys like Derek Weir have said, some complacency - and a little incompetence - set in. A lack of succession planning and a feeling that we'd continue to be challenging for top 4 eroded some of the necessary foundations. Not to mention the fact we managed to lose money with win bonuses etc. being too generous.

 

Like all businesses, it can be difficult to stop the slide.

 

We were lucky someone like Les stepped up and insisted on revamping the structure and goals of the club. Organizationally, we seem to be much stronger, but we haven't matched that on the pitch. Yet.

 

You only need to look at the lower leagues in England and Scotland to see many teams who used to play in the top flight are now struggling. The fear of that happening to us, I'm sure, drives some of the short-termism we see in some of the recruitment. I think we are in a better place now than in the last couple of years, but there is certainly room for improvement in the overall balance of homegrown vs recruitment.

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Hes done absolutely nothing since leaving Utd, but what about Ciftci on loan?

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It's almost as if Motherwell football club has forgotten what it is supposed to be. To hell with football, up with human commodity dealing. Finish 10th, play poor football with the worst standard of footballer we've ever had and make £500,000 in transfers. Job done. That's our mentality these days. It stinks.

 

See in the rest of your post, I don't actually disagree with you, but in the short term, I can live with this. For better for worse, we have to pay back people that fucked things up in the past.

 

Once we stop having to send piles of cash out of the club to resolve past issues, I'd be disappointed if we continued in the same way.

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Hes done absolutely nothing since leaving Utd, but what about Ciftci on loan?

Saw Derek Adams saying he was cutting his loan spell short in Jan and sending him back to Celtic, were interested before but Id imagine that ship has sailed

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