Motherwell assistant manager Chris Lucketti loved derby day at Preston North End – and he’s hoping for similar success in the Lanarkshire equivalent at Fir Park.
The Well host Hamilton in a crucial fixture on Saturday, Graham Alexander’s men currently eight points above 12th placed Accies. Motherwell haven’t won since August 2019 in this fixture and there would be few better times to buck that trend.
Alexander has enjoyed a fine start to life at Fir Park, winning three of the last four games, and Lucketti says they must continue to grind out results: “It is nice to look at the table and see that little bit of a gap – I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t – but we are more interested in taking it game by game, picking up results, picking up performances, which we’ve been doing of late.
“We’re in a really good place, we’re focusing on continuing the form that we’ve been in, but we do realise that it is important to win for the fans and everybody connected with the football club.”
As a former captain of Preston North End, Lucketti enjoyed his fair share of derby matches with Burnley, and he’s hoping Lanarkshire’s rivalry lives up to similar billing: “I had some great battles with Burnley when I was at Preston down the road. There was always a bit of spice about it.
“I expect it to be competitive, two teams desperate to win, and I think it’s about doing the basics well. It’s about whoever does the basics well, is earning the right to play. If we do that well enough then I expect us to go on and produce the performances that we have been doing, that lead to results.
“Any derby game you want to win. You want to win it for the fans, you want to win it for yourself and we know it’s an important game for everybody involved. Derbies are important, that’s what fans and their rivalries are all about, and we want the three points more than ever.
“We’re confident going into it, there’s no reason not to be, but you’ve got to continue in the same way, in the same fashion, in every single training session and game that comes up – you repeat and you focus on the excellence that you have been striving towards.”
Having been at Fir Park for over a month now, Lucketti’s enjoying life at Fir Park. The standard in the Premiership has caught his eye: “We’re loving it, we’re really impressed certainly with everything at our club, with the players, the team and how it’s functioning, and we’re impressed with our opponents and the level of opposition.
“I watched a lot of Scottish football down the road and everything I thought was true. There’s not a lot to choose from between most of the teams in the league. It’s about fine margins, and what we’ve been doing well in the last few games since we’ve come in really is turning those fine margins in our favour.”
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