Kettlewell talks up Spittal after double in Motherwell’s win

The midfielder scored a double n the victory over Ross County.

Stuart Kettlewell talks up Blair Spittal after double in Motherwell’s win SNS Group

Stuart Kettlewell paid tribute to Motherwell’s double goalscorer Blair Spittal’s character after the attacking midfielder led the Steelmen to victory over Ross County.

The 28-year-old was the benefactor of more than a hint of good fortune to score the opener, capitalising on a major error from Staggies goalkeeper Ross Laidlaw.

However, his class was on show for the second, curling a wonderful effort beyond the shot-stopper’s reach to pick out the corner of the net, making it 3-1 and essentially putting the game to bed.

With a reported pre-contract agreement in place with Hearts, Spittal is set to depart Fir Park this summer, but Kettlewell said he has had no doubts about continuing to rely on the playmaker.

“When you know the character of the man, it’s never a problem,” Kettlewell said.

“When you get the chance to go to a bigger club and earn more money – whatever job you do – you tend to jump at the chance.

“If I felt it was going to be a problem, you wouldn’t have seen him again, but not for one second have I thought it would be an issue.

“His performances have been fantastic, and I understand why a club like Hearts want to try and sign Blair Spittal.

“If you talk about those old-fashioned attacking midfield players, I think he sits right at the top of this division.”

County interim manager Don Cowie, meanwhile, did not get the reaction he was looking for when making three half-time substitutions with his side 2-1 behind.

On one of the hottest days of the year so far, Cowie looked to freshen his side up by putting on Loick Ayina, Josh Sims and Jordan White, but the Staggies could not find a breakthrough.

“It was a hot day, and difficult conditions for the players,” Cowie reasoned.

“I felt we needed a freshness in the second half, so I wanted a reaction.

“We huffed and puffed a little bit, but with 10 minutes to go we are still well in the game.

“With the way our home form has been, I expected us to go on and get the equaliser, but obviously it unravelled.

“Motherwell are a very good team with really good players in Spittal and (Theo) Bair who can pick you off when they have space, and maybe we just lost our discipline a little bit.

“We tried to force it, and our shape got dismantled, and when that happens good teams punish you. That’s what they did.”

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