Motherwell have looked void of any sort of fitness over their last three matches, but why is that the case?
The Well’s positive League Cup group stage run has been all but forgotten about after a run of poor results against Premiership opponents.
A draw with Livingston away from home on the opening weekend wasn’t too bad, but demoralising defeats to Celtic and Hearts at Fir Park have highlighted many weaknesses Stephen Robinson has to address.
One recurring theme whenever Motherwell have a negative result is lack of fitness. Robinson told the BBC after their Celtic defeat that they ‘didn’t have fitness to keep up’ with Celtic.
After their most recent defeat to Hearts, the Northern Irishman told the Motherwell YouTube channel that some of the new players ‘have to find a way’ of getting fit.
Is that really a valid excuse seven games into a competitive season?
Motherwell fitness issues look like they could take months to fix
The performance against Hearts was pretty terrible. There was no hunger or desire to win the game. Factor that in with the fact nearly every player looked gassed after 60 minutes, that’s not a good sign.
The fitness issues were there for all to see against Celtic as well. Motherwell pressed the life out of Celtic for 45 minutes, before again they looked knackered after one half of football.
Fitness issues weren’t apparent in the League Cup group stage. Perhaps playing against inferior opposition played a part in this, but Robinson’s side didn’t look like a 45 minute team like they do now.
Motherwell will be picked off by teams until they fix this issue. The Celtic defeat can be excused, but the Hearts defeat can’t. The Jambos are not a great side, yet the Steelmen made them look brilliant at Fir Park.
Craig Levein’s side basically parked the bus in the second half against the Well. It worked a treat, because Motherwell were drained after an hour.
This seems like it’ll take a while to fix. For professional players to still have fitness issues after seven competitive games is quite poor and really shouldn’t be tolerated.
Questions have to be asked why it has got to this stage. Are the Well coaches pushing them hard enough? Is the style of play too demanding for this squad? Could it be that the players just aren’t looking after themselves?
There are a few questions to be asked, but Robinson needs a quick fix for his side’s fitness issues.