NO - not a discussion about the things we have toiled to score since the start of the season BUT on the ones that have made this club what it has become in the last fifteen years (in my opinion!). A business will only perform to the level of the goals it sets itself. If an outrageous but achievable goal is set an organisation will find the energy to meet it. BUT if an easy goal is set they will perform only to the level of that goal. I am sure that if you bear with me you'll maybe understand why we have succeeded and failed in the last 15 years.
When John Chapman took over at the club he had a fairly simple but difficult goal, he had to pull Motherwell back from the brink of financial disaster and make the business viable again. This necessitated the sale of top players earning big money, and asking manager Tommy McLean to wheel and deal in the free transfer market. As well as achieving financial stability the other goal was to stay in the Premier League. This was achieved, once with the aid of League reconstruction pushed through by which club....Motherwell.
Having achieved financial stability the club as an organisation could start to look upwards to a regular mid table slot in the late 80s to early 9Os this was achieved brilliantly with the acquisition of a better standard of player; Kirk, Paterson, Russell, O'Neill and of course Cooper, along with a set of home grown youngsters; Maxwell, 0'Donnell, Boyd, McCart etc. The latter players coming as a result of realising that we could not compete in the transfer market and therefore had to raise our own players. This period culminated in the winning of the Scottish Cup in 1991, which many hailed as a springboard for the club.
Unfortunately the next goal set was forced upon the club by the Taylor report which meant that rather than investing in new players, an all-seater stadium had to be built. This was achieved with the East Stand in 1991, the South Stand in 1993, and the Cooper Stand in 1995. Having achieved this, at the same time as finishing 2nd and 3rd in the League the challenge was there again to build the playing staff and take the Great Leap Forward.
Again unfortunately it would appear that Mr. Chapman's next goal was to retire and sell his stake in the club. This meant that he still wanted to keep us in the Premier League while retaining a healthy balance sheet for the next owner. This saw us spend two years fighting to the last day of the season to avoid relegation with a team of players who had aged together.
Mr Boyle has now taken over and the new lease of energy he has released has been incredible, as he sets a goal to get as many people through the turnstiles as possible. This of course has seen him reduce prices, talk of ladies days, launch youth and school initiatives. Lets hope he achieves these initial goals in his three year plan and is then in a position to set more ambitious goals in the years to follow.
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