SATURDAY was a dream come true for Chris Cadden, even if it didn’t have the fairytale ending he believed Motherwell deserved.

The 19-year-old was handed his starting debut for the Fir Park by Mark McGhee against Ross County, an opportunity that came almost two years after his first senior appearance in claret and amber.

Following a loan spell at Albion Rovers last term, where he helped the Coatbridge club clinch the League Two title, it was a special moment for local lad Cadden to get recognition for the effort he has put in on the training field and in Well's under-20s team.

Slotting in next to Keith Lasley and Stephen Pearson, the Bellshill-born teenager, who is the son of former Motherwell player Steve Cadden, put in a man-of-the-match performance, even if it wasn’t enough to stop the Staggies claiming a tight 2-1 win.

Reflecting on the occasion, he said: “I’m disappointed with the result but it was a great experience for me.

“I found out yesterday I was going to play. I phoned my dad and the rest of the family, gave them time to make sure they could be at the ground for the game.

“They were all here, uncles and my mum and dad. My twin brother Nicky couldn’t be here because he was playing with Airdrie. He was gutted at not being able to make it.

“My dad played here for a couple of years and then went to Albion Rovers and Alloa. He was a good player and knows what he’s talking about. He lets me know if I’ve done well or bad.

“He just told me to play my way into the game and not to over complicate things, to play the simple pass and once I’ve got a foothold in the game start to show what I’m about. His advice was to keep it simple to start with and build my confidence.”

As touched on, Cadden comes from a family with football in its blood.

Already father and son have both lifted title trophies with Albion Rovers during their careers, while Chris’ twin brother Nicky came through the youth ranks with his sibling at Fir Park before a switch to the Diamonds in 2013.

“It’s an inspiration for me that my dad used to be a pro,” explained Cadden Jnr. “It’s no pressure at all, it’s great that he’s able to help me along the way.

“He’ll tell me it straight. After a game he’ll say if he thought I played bad. It’s not coming from someone who hasn’t played the game, he knows what he’s talking about.

“I have to listen to him, even if I might not agree with him all the time!

“I got a text from my mum saying well done. But I’ve not heard yet from my dad – I wonder what he’ll say!”

The experience, regardless of result, clearly has Cadden filled with confidence for the future.

Already in his relatively short spell back in charge McGhee has put his faith in youth throughout this Motherwell team.

Young centre-half Ben Hall has been an ever-present since making his debut late last year, while the likes of Dom Thomas and Jack Leitch have also featured this campaign.

“Seeing the gaffer throwing in youngsters gives you belief,” he said. “When you are playing under-20s every week it’s good to see that there’s a pathway to the first team.

“I’ve seen Ben Hall and Dom Thomas get their chance.

“Now it was my turn and I loved it.”