Mark McGhee hails McFadden cameo

James McFadden in action against Cove Rangers (Pic by Alan Watson)
James McFadden in action against Cove Rangers (Pic by Alan Watson)

Motherwell manager Mark McGhee hailed the 40-minute cameo appearance by substitute James McFadden last Saturday.

McFadden (32) jinked past Cove Rangers defenders and linked well with Scott McDonald during a second half in which ’Well contrived to miss several scoring chances in the 5-0 win.

“Faddy was brilliant,” McGhee said.

“He’s got to get up to speed in terms of coming on in games but he will be able to make a contribution.

“He is an entertainer and you saw the way he teamed up with Scotty.

“There will be another day where we’ll be able to use him in the same sort of way. He will be effective for us.

“But as I’ve said before, he’s just brilliant having around the place with the influence he has on others.

“Dom Thomas for instance is learning from Faddy. How to join in with others is crucial.”

McGhee said it was a pity that McFadden – who is due to return to MLS outfit Philadelphia Union at the end of this month – hadn’t scored against Cove as he’d had a couple of opportunities.

And the gaffer rated ’Well’s overall display in the William Hill Scottish Cup fourth round romp at Fir Park as “good”.

He added: “The boys trained really well this week and all the signs were that they were tuned in.

“Getting the goals as early as we did was a dream start.

“Regardless of the opposition, you still get a wee bit lucky to get goals as easy as that.

“That obviously made it very difficult for them and gave us a platform to build on again.”

McGhee said that the application his players had shown in disposing of Cove was the “most pleasing” part of their victory.

“They were so professional about it,” he said.

“They showed them total respect. There was no trying to take the mickey at any point in the game.”

Tongue in cheek, McGhee said that he “didn’t really care” if two-goal Stephen Pearson had been disappointed not to get the chance to complete his hat-trick.

McGhee, who substituted the midfielder with 20 minutes left, said: “Keith Lasley is suspended for the Hearts game this Saturday and I wasn’t taking any chances with Pearo. He’d had enough.

“He’d had 70 minutes to get a hat-trick and I’ve scored them in a lot less than that.”

McGhee also said that Highland League Cove had done themselves proud, despite their heavy defeat.

He said: “At no point did they capitulate.

“At no point did they throw in the towel, at no point did they lose their shape or their discipline.

“There was nobody making silly challenges or anything like that.

“I thought they deserved a whole lot of credit because they played against a team from the top league in the country who are playing very well at this moment.”