Three and a half thousand gave Sir Matt a minute's applause before Manchester kicked off facing the empty Cooper Stand. Although Motherwell were without Craigan and Murphy we still fielded a strong eleven.
Applause for Sir Matt
Hutchison and Reynolds paired up in central defence and Hateley was given the protective spot ahead of them. Moutaouakil's debut on the right gave the home fans a chance to see our latest recruit. His defensive capabilities were rarely tested and he spent most of the match in an advanced position on the wing. He looks the part but we have still to see him under pressure. Jutkiewicz and O'Brien supported Sutton when we had the ball and fell back when needed.
The visitors had a young team on duty and rarely caused us much concern. As ever with these low-key games there was very little physical contact but there was plenty of opportunity for passing moves on the billiard-like surface which Fir Park now boasts.
O'Brien was our star man and he had a few efforts which kept the United keeper on his toes. Sutton connected well with a cross to come close and just before the break Jutkiewicz slid on to a Hammell cross but he missed the target. The only panic in our box was caused by a slack moment from Forbes which gave King a chance but he was soon swamped by defenders.
We got the goal in 52 minutes when Coke fired cross the keeper to give us a lead our play probably merited. There were wholesale changes to our line up thereafter. Gannon changed the entire midfield in a four-man substitution which gave a run out to Jennings, Lasley, Mcgarry and Fitzpatrick. Later Pollock and Page completed the changes.
Ruddy had little to do and the game petered out without much incident. Reynolds collected the shield at the end of the game and Jim Gannon has his first piece of silverware for the Fir Park trophy cabinet. Let's hope it's the first of many!
Motherwell: Ruddy, Moutaouakil, Hammell, Reynolds, Hutchison, O'Brien, Hateley, Forbes, Cok, Jutkiewicz, Sutton
Manchester United: Amos, Da Silva, Dudgeon, Norwood, Chester, Gill, Brandy, Hewson, King, Eikrem, Ajose