July


Thursday 1st July 1920

The club’s Board decided to open a new position as trainer, they discussed in length with Rangers manager Bill Struth about the opening, it was decided that C.J. Mears would be the first man to take on the role.

Monday 1st July 1991

As 91 cup hero Ally Maxwell and manager Tommy McLean became involved in a contract dispute it truly looked like his days were numbered when a new goalkeeper was signed in the shape of Billy Thomson from Dundee United.

Thursday 1st July 2004

After signing pre-contracts towards the end of the 2003/04 season, both Derek Adams and Steven Craig would depart Fir Park to join Aberdeen. Adams had made no secret that one day he wanted to play for the team he supported as a youngster if the chance ever presented itself, Steven’s comments were interesting as he stated that when he goes on holiday no one has heard of Motherwell and that played a part on his departure, he also referred to the Dons as a sleeping giant but Aberdeen wouldn’t really accomplish anything of note until a decade later. Both struggled to command a regular starting berth and departed Pittodrie after just one season.

Friday 3rd July 1998

It was reported in the press that Motherwell had signed Finnish international Harri Ylonen on a pre-contract and he would arrive in late October when his contract with Hakka expires. As it transpired when the deal was due to go through, Harri Kampman the manager who signed him had been relived of his duties and the deal to bring Ylonen to Lanarkshire was cancelled.

Monday 6th July 1998

‘Well kicked off an interesting pre-season, having lost many players who had served the club for so long at the end of the previous campaign, Harri Kampman certainly overhauled the squad, the Finn then organised a tour within his homeland which kicked off with a 4-2 win over Rips Riihimaki, Jered Stirling, Ian Ross, Stephen Halliday and Stevie McMillan all got on the scoresheet. The tour was a mixed bag as the side crashed to a 3-0 defeat against FinnPa two days later, the last match was against Kampman’s old side FC Lahti, he received a standing ovation but the match itself was a dull 0-0.

Sunday 7th July 1935

Johnny Blair is appointed he club captain for the 1935/36 season.

Saturday 8th July 1944

Motherwell get a bit of revenge for the 1939 Scottish Cup Final defeat when they beat Clyde 1-0 to lift the Summer Cup at Hampden. The Motherwell team who played: Johnston, Kilmarnock, Shaw, Ross, Paton, Russell, Gibson, Watson, Mathie, Gillan and McGowan.

Tuesday 10th July 2018

Irish midfielder Carl McHugh decides to relinquish his role of captain of Motherwell FC. He explained that he wasn’t happy with the level of his performances and it wasn’t a decision he had taken lightly as he had felt the captaincy had been affecting him in different ways. Carl was the first captain such the early 1950’s who lead the team to two domestic cup finals within the same campaign. Peter Hartley will now resume the role of captain.

Friday 12th July 2002

Popular Frenchman Éric Deloumeaux was sold to Aberdeen for a cut price £50,000, the defender had went on trial with English side Coventry City but they decided against signing him. He had won the Motherwell Player of the Year award due to his consistent performances and was certainly the best addition manager Eric Black made to the squad in his short spell at Fir Park. As the club has slipped into administration only a matter of months earlier it was only a matter of time before the vultures tried to sign players on the cheap. Éric had arrived at the club in November 2001 despite rave reviews the club couldn’t knock back the money on offer. Despite never scoring for the Steelmen he did however score on three occasions for the Dons during the 2002/03 season, typically all the goals he scored were against Motherwell.

Wednesday 13th July 2011

Northern Ireland defender Stephen Craigan was rewarded with his services to the club for his two spells firstly between 1995 – 2000 then 2003 – Present, with a testimonial match against his only other senior club Partick Thistle at Fir Park. The ‘Well won the game 1-0 thanks to a penalty scored by none other than Craggs himself. Stephen would hang up his boots at the end of the following season. A great servant to Motherwell FC he is currently the record cap holder at Fir Park having won 51 caps whilst playing for Northern Ireland, In total he won 54 caps the other three were gained whilst playing at Firhill.

Friday 15th July 1955

The Board went through an extensive list as they looked for a new manager to replace George Stevenson. After an interview it was agreed to offer the position to Bobby Ancell, manager of Dunfermline. In accepting the position he becomes the third Motherwell manager.

Friday 16th July 1999

Motherwell romped to a 9-0 win over IK Tord while on a pre-season tour of Sweden. Derek Townsley, Stephen Halliday, Don Goodman and Lee McCulloch were amongst the goals.

Thursday 17th July 2008

Motherwell played Romanian side CFR Cluj in their preparations for the new season at the Obertraun training camp in Austria. The side fell to a 2-1 defeat conceding in the 89th minute, however the main talking point was a horrible challenge on defender Brian McLean from striker Diego Ruiz which left him with a torn medial ligament and ruptured cruciate. Despite the friendly nature of the match, Cluj management were not sympathetic to the situation saying to manager Mark McGhee that these things happen. McLean wouldn’t return to first team duties until the 28th February 2009.

Saturday 18th July 1998

The side started off their Highland tour in fine fashion as they thumped Nairn County 5-0. Two Dutch trialists Lee-roy Echteld and Michael Buskermolen both looked to impress boss Harri Kampman while playing on the tour. Despite both players featuring in the win over Forres Mechanics neither player would land a contract, both had decent CV’s but Kampman decided to look elsewhere as he reshaped the squad.

Saturday 19th July 2003

Motherwell met Hamilton Accies in a pre-season friendly, it was the club’s first visit to their new Ballast Stadium (New Douglas Park). The Second Division side proved to be a tough nut to crack, Hamilton went a goal in front in the first half but it took a very late Derek Adams wonder goal to salvage a draw.

Tuesday 19th July 2011

Club captain Stephen Craigan announces that he will retire from international football. As record cap holder for Motherwell he won 51 of his 54 caps whilst a footballer at Fir Park, the last of his caps was won against Slovenia. The defender would retire from professional football the following summer.

Saturday 20th July 2013

Motherwell perform double duty in pre season friendlies as the squad is split into two sides, a mixture of first team, youth and trialists. One ‘Well side head to Cowdenbeath where they triumph 5-0 and the other side head to England to face Morecambe where a last minute goal from trialist Jack Smith earned a 2-1 victory for the Steelmen.

Saturday 21st July 2012

Motherwell draw 1-1 with English Premier League side Everton in Stevie Hammell’s testimonial match. The full back had came through the youth ranks at the club before serving the first team through two spells from 1999 – 2006 and from 2008 -2018, he had served Southend United between his spells at Fir Park. James McFadden made a guest appearance for Motherwell in this game coming on as a substitute, he was currently without a club.

Tuesday 22nd July 1997

The side traveled down south to play English side Carlisle United in a pre-season friendly. In an entertaining game which finished 3-3, trialist Franck Rolling would break his nose and subsequently miss the rest of the pre season games much to his dismay as manager Alex McLeish would turn his attention to other players.

Additionally, Mitchell Van Der Gaag returns to his homeland after the club agree a £400,000 transfer to FC Utrecht, the same fee ‘Well had paid to land the Dutchman in January 1995.

Defender, Chris McCart leaves the club to join First Division Falkirk on a free transfer. Speculation had been mounting for months previously that he was going to move on but nothing had materialised, he had fallen out of favour at Fir Park. The popular player had came through the youth ranks at Motherwell and was part of the 1991 Scottish Cup winning squad.

Monday 22nd July 2019

The club announce a unique shirt sponsorship deal with betting firm Paddy Power. They had came up with a campaign called ‘Save our Shirt’ which essentially removed the main sponsor logo from the front of the jersey.

English Championship side Huddersfield Town were the first to benefit from the initiative, once Motherwell came on board another English side, Newport County followed suit.

The club mentioned that the partnership with Paddy Power represents the biggest shirt sponsorship in the clubs history.

Saturday 23rd July 2005

Despite putting in decent performances against English sides Southampton and Everton during the pre-season games, Motherwell crashed to a concerning 4-0 loss at the hands of Queen of the South at Palmerston Park, not the ideal preparation for the side when the league season begins in a weeks time with Celtic providing the first competitive fixture.

Saturday 26th July 1997

Motherwell fall to a 0-3 (Milosevic (2), Yorke) reversal in a friendly to English Premier League side Aston Villa. The club had trialist goalkeeper Pegguy Arphexad all geared up to play but international clearance wasn’t received in time and the side had to field Scott Howie who seemed destined to leave the club as he failed to agree a new contract.

Saturday 26th July 2008

Bradford City made the journey North to face Motherwell at Fir Park in a pre season friendly. The Steelmen ran riot in the first half leading 4-0 thanks to goals from Clarkson, Porter, Smith and Malcolm. The side took their feet off the gas in the second half and the score remained the same at the full time whistle.

Thursday 29th July 1999

Motherwell receive a £5,000 fine from the SFA for the squads poor discipline during the 1998/99 season. 76 yellow cards were dished out as was 6 red cards.

Tuesday 30th July 1957

Huddersfield Town put a bid on the table of £2,500 for forward Alex Bain. The club accept the offer but it is dependant on whether or not the player is happy to move on.

Saturday 30th July 2005

An exciting start to the 2005/06 season as Celtic visit Fir Park. At half time the match looked dead and buried for ‘Well as they found themselves down 1-3 thanks to a hat trick from John Hartson, however in a fine second half performance the side rallied back thanks to goals from Jim Hamilton and then Scott McDonald before Willie Kinniburgh put the side ahead late on. Heartbreak on the 90th minute as Craig Beattie equalised for Celtic. Despite this being the first match of the season it would be the last appearances for both Scott Leitch and Gordon Marshall who both hung up their boots due to injury.

Friday 31st July 1998

Motherwell snap up Dutch defender Michel Doesburg from AZ Alkmaar, for a fee of £50,000. It is expected he will make his debut against St Johnstone tomorrow.

Tuesday 31st July 2012

Perhaps the highest platform the club has completed in as they took on Greek outfit Panathinaikos in the Champions League – Qualifying 3rd Round. The side fell to a 0-2 defeat in the first leg despite a decent performance. The side crashed out the competition after losing 3-0 in Athens on the 8th August.

Full back Zaine Francis-Angol made his first team debut in the home leg.

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