Motherwell manager Graham Alexander says the Fir Park team were given a sharp warning on the final day of the Scottish Premiership season via a 2-1 home defeat to Ross County.

The Fir Park side opened the scoring through Sam Foley but Iain Vigurs and Michael Gardyne goals secured County’s place in the division for next season. It prevented Motherwell from finishing seventh, ending the term in eighth. Alexander’s original remit of keeping the club in the league after arriving in January was completed with ease.

Motherwell v Rangers - Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership

Alexander was unhappy with Motherwell. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

But he wasn’t happy at full-time: “I hate that saying – nothing to play for. We’re in a brilliant job, representing a brilliant club, you’ve got your pride, three points, your club, your family, your team-mates – you’ve got everything to play for every single game.

“For example, if we’re going to be up and down mentally then that has to change. Professional football is so competitive and we need to have the highest standards every time. You’re not always going to play as well as you can but your application, your focus and your motivation should never waver and it did, without a shadow of a doubt.

“You need a really strong mindset in your squad from start to finish. This team didn’t pick up enough points during the first half of the season and they were in big trouble when we came in. We did really well to get out of that but this was a reality check for us. I don’t think you make good decisions in anger so I won’t be doing that.”

Salford City v Northampton Town - Sky Bet League Two

No quick decisions. (Photo by Pete Norton/Getty Images)

Big calls await at Fir Park, with several players out of contract and key players like Allan Campbell and Declan Gallagher already confirmed as leaving. Asked if the County defeat had made his mind up on some players, the Motherwell manager said: “Possibly.

“I already have quite clear ideas about what to do but there were a couple of players who were on the fence and I’ll just have to see where we go with that. The players have been great over the past three or four months, but we’re talking just 30 minutes after a really raw result, so I can’t think too positively at the moment.

“We’ve done the job we wanted to do when we came in by staying up but there’s a bad taste in my mouth after this but that might be good for me going forward in terms of helping me clarify a few things in my mind.”

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