Much of the spectacle that might have been was hidden behind winter jackets and storm hoods. The players’ attempts to kick errant beach balls back into the East Stand gave ample demonstration of the strength of the biting wind. Still, the crowd did its best to defy the elements.
The boys in the corner started proceedings with their colourful opening display and backed it up with their usual vociferous support throughout the game. The show of respect for Craigan as the stadium clock clicked to 5 minutes was impressive, all the better for the size of the crowd.
It’s likely that the reduced price put around 3,000 on the gate. With any luck the club would not have suffered a loss but there’s no doubt that we’ll benefit in the long term by encouraging as many through the doors as possible. Many of those extra fans will return for the European games and, as ever, the trick will be to get them hooked.
We had a scare when Hammell was carted off early in the first half. It was good to see him making enough of a recovery to join in the lap of honour. He reported later that his knee was swollen but it seems there will be no long term damage. According to the manager’s post-match comments the players have six weeks before they need to report back for training.
No doubt we’ll have the usual rumour mill to survive before we know the personnel that will make us the mainstay of next season’s squad. To those who won’t be playing for Motherwell again, good luck and thanks. To those who will return to take up the challenge of the Champions League qualifiers, behave yourselves!