McCall wants to reach transfer deadline with squad intact

Motherwell manager Stuart McCall is hoping to get past the transfer deadline with his squad intact as he looks to continue their excellent start to the Clydesdale Bank Premier League season, which continued with a 4-2 victory at Dunfermline.

Jamie Murphy and Chris Humphrey were on target as Motherwell cruised to a 3-0 lead before the hour mark, before two deflected strikes gave Dunfermline brief hope.

The attacking pair are the most likely to attract interest, but McCall is looking to add to his squad rather than see it depleted before Wednesday.

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Former Bradford winger Omar Daley is awaiting a visa in order to join up with Motherwell in the coming days. McCall, whose side topped the table on Saturday night after bouncing back from their defeat by Rangers, said: “We’ve had no inquiries. You never know what’s in the wings, but I would be hopeful we would have the same group to Christmas anyway and it gives us a little chance, not to solidify where we are because we are never going to be top of the league, but to keep our good run going and hopefully keep us in the top six.

“That’s what our aim was at the beginning of the season – we have got to keep on getting results to keep us up there. Top of the league is nice for supporters and the players might get a little more bonus money, but it was just an important win for us because we have got Dunfermline squeezed between the Old Firm games.

“We go to Parkhead and that is obviously a very difficult place to get anything so it was important that we got something and, being three points, I’m delighted.”

McCall was also happy to see Michael Higdon claim two goals after getting off the mark in the 4-0 Scottish Communities League Cup win at Clyde.

Higdon curled home an 11th-minute opener after a well-worked move and tapped home Nicky Law’s cross to complete the scoring in the last minute. “I said after the St Mirren game that the front three weren’t firing, but when we looked back at the tape, Michael has had two really good efforts, the keeper has made saves,” McCall said.

“He has been effective, he has set up a couple of people. Just because he hasn’t scored, he was still contributing to the team.”

Motherwell were completely dominant in the first half, with Murphy’s deflected strike putting them two ahead in the 26th minute.

Humphrey added an impressive solo effort in the 55th minute and McCall admitted his team became sloppy as the Pars forced their way back in the game.

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But the home side benefited from some luck when Joe Cardle inadvertently diverted David Graham’s long-range strike past Darren Randolph in the 69th minute, before netting a deflected effort himself on an 88th-minute break.

Dunfermline boss Jim McIntyre was able to look at the bigger picture after his side’s unbeaten start to the SPL season came to an end: “We have done exceptionally well in the first four games but that doesn’t mean to say it’s going to happen every week.”