Keith: Tall order can help stop Well coming up short

KEITH LASLEY is relishing the arrival of Celtic at Fir Park tomorrow, insisting they are the ideal foes to inspire Motherwell into a late-season surge.

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Keith Lasley is looking forward to facing Celtic
Keith Lasley is looking forward to facing Celtic

Stuart McCall's men have slumped to successive defeats at the hands of Dundee United and Ross County to fall back behind Inverness in the battle for second place, with St Johnstone now joining them on 40 points.

With Saturday's 3-0 Highland hammering the Steelmen's fourth loss in their last five games, Lasley believes that a visit from the Hoops can re-focus and re-energise Well.

The Lanarkshire side's last victory over Celtic came two years ago on Sunday February 27 in a 2-0 Fir Park success, and the skipper is determined to bring 24 months of frustration to an end.

He said: "I think the main thing for us after the County game is that we have another match coming so soon.

"That is just what you want after a performance that was as poor as our showing up at Dingwall. The fact it is Celtic who are coming to Fir Park is a positive in many ways.

"People might expect me to say they are the last side we would want to face after the weekend, but the one thing you will get at Fir Park is a fantastic atmosphere.

"On top of that we know that we have no option, but to find our best form or we will take a real sore one.

"There is no expectation on us to get anything against Celtic, so we can go out there and just focus on producing our best football.

"We haven't beaten Celtic for a couple of seasons now and that run is due to come to an end."

When it comes to looking at where the threat lies for the Fir Park side tomorrow night, the Well leader has no doubt that picking out individual danger men in the Bhoys line- up is pointless.

Lasley said: "You look at Celtic and they have so much depth and quality. And with their ability to rotate within their squad, it's difficult to forecast what their starting line-up will be, never mind who will be the main threat.

"Scott Brown's injury is a big blow for them, but with Celtic having so many games in quick succession he could have been rested for our game with them anyway."

HE ADDED: "But from our point of view we know that we have the quality within our ranks to hurt them if we can get everyone playing at the top of their game.

"So this is going to be all about making sure we take care of ourselves."

Fir Park hero James McFadden has enjoyed cameo appearances from the bench in both of Well's last two outings.

While Las was keen to play down expectations of the former Scotland internationalist reclaiming his best form immediately, he did admit that Faddy is the type of big game player who will relish a crack at the Hoops.

The Motherwell captain said: "James has been out for a long while prior to these two substitute appearances and it will take time for him to get his match sharpness back.

"But you see what he has been producing in training every day since he came back to us and you know that he is well on the way to finding his best form again.

"In the SPL it doesn't get any bigger than a home game against Celtic, and Faddy will relish the prospect of producing his best against them.

"But that is something that every player in a Motherwell shirt must do tomorrow night."

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