No 'finger-pointing' as Motherwell aim to turn performances into points

Stuart Kettlewell says scoring goals will come from collective effort.

Stuart Kettlewell says there will be no “finger-pointing” as his Motherwell side works to add goals to their game – and he believes the underlying performances give him reasons to be optimistic.

The Fir Park side currently sit fourth in the Premiership table after a strong start to the season but have suffered defeat in their last two matches, at home to St Mirren at away against Rangers.

Both defeats came by one goal, with Motherwell failing to find the net despite enjoying plenty of the ball and putting the opposition under pressure for spells in each game.

The manager was disappointed with the outcomes but said that he was encouraged by how his side had played in two tough games and that he didn’t see too much cause for concern.

“There’s not a lot broken,” Kettlewell said.

“I believe over the two games that we should capitalise on the chances that we created.

“But I’ve been in situations before where we start to think as coaches that we need to work on finishing, on putting the ball in the back of the net.

“Sometimes you look beyond that and say that we’re not looking into those opportunities or not keeping possession of the ball and the team’s not functioning right. You almost need to forget about that and need to get the first stage or two right before you get to that point.

“I don’t sit with that at this minute in time. I sincerely hope that doesn’t rear its head on Saturday of course but in terms of how we are functioning, all facets of the game are looking very good and strong, other than the fact that we need to capitalise on the opportunities that come our way.”

The former midfielder reflected on a time when he was part of a struggling Ross County team and saw blame being apportioned in the dressing room. He said that he was determined that none of his sides would repeat that mistake and said that collective responsibility was important when celebrating wins or dealing with defeat.

Ahead of the visit on Celtic on Saturday, he urged the team to stick together and said that everyone could contribute to success at both ends of the pitch.

“I spoke to the players after the game on Saturday and I’ve always been a team player,” he said. “At no point do we start to point fingers at an individual or one particular unit in our team.

“We all take the clean sheet when it comes our way and forward players get credited for their work within it. And if we go and win a game and we score a few goals then sometimes that can come from set plays, sometimes that solid foundation at the back.

“If we see that a particular player or unit has to improve to help the team then we will work on that but at no point does the individual supersede the team.

“The players know that and I think that’s been a factor in us performing the way we are just now. We are all in it together no matter what.  If I felt that was suddenly to flip and it was the back end of the pitch and we were conceding ridiculous goals then we all must take responsibility in that.”

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