Motherwell’s Jamie Murphy refuses to focus on anything other than playing for the Clydesdale Bank Premier League club despite continued speculation about his future, with the latest reports linking Rangers with a move for the striker.
Scorers: Aberdeen - McGinn (90); Motherwell - Murphy (80)
Referee: W Collum
Murphy netted a superb late opener for his side in Saturday’s Scottish Cup fourth-round match against Aberdeen at Pittodrie when he blasted the ball past Jamie Langfield from the edge of the box, but the visitors were left disappointed as Dons striker Niall McGinn headed home an Andrew Considine cross for a last-gasp leveller.
That sets up a replay between the sides, initially set for a week on Tuesday, at Fir Park.
Murphy said: “The speculation used to get to me a bit, but over the years I’ve had to deal with it and get used to it.
“I take it with a pinch of salt now, and I’ll find out about anything when the club tell me about it. I’m enjoying just playing football at the moment, and I’ve not heard anything.
“We obviously have to lift ourselves for the replay. We wanted to win it up here. We put in a good performance and managed to take the lead, but it’s just one of those things. Football can be cruel sometimes.
“It’s just one of those things. It’s a ball into the box and he gets his head to it. If it went anywhere else, either Lee Hollis would save it, or it goes wide.”
Murphy paid tribute to Aberdeen manager Craig Brown, who mentored him during the manager’s spell at Fir Park, and added that Brown had brought the goal on himself.
He explained: “I scored one like that against Hamilton a few years ago, when Craig Brown was the manager.
“In fact, Craig told me to hit a lot more shots from outside the box because of that goal, and I think today’s was the first one I’ve scored since! He was great for my career. I owe him and Archie Knox a lot, and it’s always a good game when the two teams meet.”
For his part, McGinn felt Aberdeen performed well enough that they could have won the match on the day. “It’s an important goal to keep us in the cup,” said the Northern Ireland international. “We wanted to win the game, but to score the goal so late on after a great goal from Jamie Murphy was pleasing.
“I thought we started the game well and after the first 15 minutes we could have been a couple of goals up.
“We came out the blocks well and were creating chances. Over the game I thought we created the better chances, and even after Motherwell went ahead we knew we could score.”
The former Celtic man knows the replay will be another tough game for his side, but with Aberdeen having found it easier to come by wins on the road than at Pittodrie this season, he knows his team are in with a shout.
He continued: “We have to take confidence from the way we played today and from our away performances over the season. It’s going to be another tough game at Fir Park, and it’s one we’ll look forward to.”
McGinn is not the tallest of men, but was delighted to score another with his head.
He said: “It’s just all about being in the right place at the right time, and getting in and about the penalty box. It was a great ball in from Andrew Considine, and I was just delighted to get on the end of it and to see the ball go in.”