Nicky Law (79 mins)
Rory Fallon (5 mins)
Rory Fallon (41 mins)
The William Hill Scottish Cup Sixth Round
, Mar 11, 2012
Ground: Fir Park Stadium , Kickoff: 15:45 , Att 7,640
McCall predicts tight game Stuart McCall has played down his and Motherwell's impressive recent record against Aberdeen ahead of Sunday's William Hill Scottish Cup quarter-final clash at Fir Park.
It is more than three years since the Dons recorded a win over the Steelmen and manager McCall has won all four of his games against the Pittodrie side since he became boss in the final days of 2010, including two in the Clydesdale Bank Premier League this season.
However, the former Rangers and Scotland midfielder knows that any talk of a hoodoo over the men from the Granite City, unbeaten in their last 12 games, could rebound on him.
McCall, who will have stand-in skipper Keith Lasley back from suspension, said: "Most people would say it was about time that (run) got broken.
"Since I've been at the club we have managed to get four wins out of four but if you look at the results, they all have been by the odd goal.
"We have had three 2-1 victories and a tight 1-0 here when Bob McHugh came off the bench and scored late on.
"So the games have always been very close between two evenly-matched sides and come Sunday it will probably be the odd goal that wins it." Tom Hateley was also a little nervous when reminded about Motherwell's good recent record over the Dons.
"Those games have been and gone," said the Fir Park defender.
"I don't think it matters how we have done against them this season or in previous years.
"It will will count for nothing if we don't get the result on Sunday.
"They are on a good run and playing well, defending well and not losing games which is massively important so it will be a very hard game." Motherwell lost in the final last season to Celtic and McCall would like to replicate that journey again, obviously with a better outcome "It would be fantastic but first and foremost we would love to get to the semi-final and back to Hampden," he said.
"A lot of the lads had three games there last season, some players go through their career without getting to the old stadium.
"There is an inner desire to go one better this season." Aberdeen winger Peter Pawlett has declared himself ready to provide the creative spark needed to ensure the Dons' season does not flicker out just as it got going.
Craig Brown's men's season could hinge on two trips to Fir Park in the space of a week.
Although the Dons are much improved in 2012, they have only won two SPL games during their unbeaten run and the last time they scored two goals in the league was January 2 when Kari Arnason's 40-yard strike earned them a late win at Dundee United.
Pawlett has recently returned from a hamstring injury he suffered early in the fourth-round win over Forfar and he is keen to get the chance to add some creativity to the team.
"We are feeling confident," the Scotland Under-21 international said.
"We are getting a lot of draws but we are very difficult to beat with the number of clean sheets we have had. But we will go to Motherwell and go for the win.
"You do watch the team at the minute and feel we are very, very solid and difficult to beat.
"We need to create a few more chances. We are creating but we need to score more goals and hopefully I can provide that." Pawlett came off the bench in the last two games, draws against St Mirren and Celtic, but has twice played 90 minutes in practice matches.
"I'm starting to get back to full fitness and feeling sharp," he said.
Motherwell vs Aberdeen
Last modified 18:22 11/03/12
Fallon double sinks 10-man Well Rory Fallon's first-half double saw Aberdeen advance to the William Hill Scottish Cup semi-finals ahead of Motherwell following a 2-1 win.
Fallon headed the opener after four minutes and struck a second after 41 minutes after Michael Higdon had missed the chance to equalise from the penalty spot in the last-eight contest at Fir Park.
Stuart McCall was at half-time banished to the stand by referee Craig Thomson, the Motherwell manager perhaps still fuming at a perceived injustice which resulted in the corner which led to the opening goal.
Worse was to come for Motherwell, last season's beaten finalists, as captain Keith Lasley was after 69 minutes shown a straight red card for a foul on Fraser Fyvie.
Nicky Law pulled a goal back 11 minutes from time, but the Dons went on to record their first win over the Steelmen in three-and-a-half years to go through to the final four at Hampden.
It was a deserved triumph for the visitors against a team third in the Clydesdale Bank Premier League but below par today.
Well will have the opportunity for swift revenge in Saturday's SPL clash between the teams.
Midfielder Lasley returned from suspension in Motherwell's only change, while Clark Robertson replaced Cup-tied midfielder Gavin Rae in the Dons' only switch following their 1-1 draw with Celtic.
Aberdeen carried confidence from their 12-match unbeaten run into the match and, after Law had an effort blocked, took the lead following a disputed corner. Scott Vernon had appeared to kick the ball out, with Lasley in close attendance.
Fyvie's cross from the right was met at the back post by Andrew Considine, who directed the ball back on to the edge of six-yard box and Fallon headed in his fifth of the season.
The aerial threat of Aberdeen's strike force was soon apparent again when Mitchel Megginson crossed from the right, Fallon headed back to Vernon, who nodded just wide, before Darren Randolph saved well from Rory McArdle.
Henrik Ojamaa was lively for Motherwell, who were awarded a penalty after 27 minutes when Robertson was adjudged to have hauled down Higdon.
Higdon hit his spot-kick at a comfortable height for Jason Brown to save.
Shaun Hutchinson and Ryan Jack each had to be replaced following an aerial collision, Jonathan Page, a substitute after a Stephen Craigan injury in the warm-up, coming on for Motherwell and Chris Clark for the visitors.
Ojamaa prodded wide after the ball broke to him inside the area before the Dons went two up.
Clark's deep cross from the right was met on the left side of the area by Fallon, whose crisp side-footed volley beat Randolph.
McCall was a spectator from the directors' box for the second half and would have been far from satisfied with what he witnessed.
Megginson had an effort saved as the Dons resumed on the attack, with Well far from fluid in possession.
Ojamaa almost created a goal for Law, but Robertson snuffed out the cross from the left and Considine cleared.
Jamie Murphy mis-hit a shot straight at Brown after ghosting in behind McArdle before making way for Chris Humphrey.
Moments later Lasley was sent off for a lunge on Fyvie in the centre circle, with the Dons midfielder taken from the field on a stretcher.
Ten-man Motherwell's hopes improved 11 minutes from time after Humphrey's pace took him clear down the right and he delivered a low cross which Law tucked in at the back post.
Another Humphrey cross failed to find a target in a packed box as Motherwell pushed forward before Kari Arnason's swerving shot was collected at the second attempt by Randolph.
There were five minutes of stoppage time in a frantic finale and defender Tim Clancy was pushed into attack and had a chance to equalise, but Brown saved.
Substitute Peter Pawlett then missed an open goal on the counter attack after Randolph had gone up for a corner, but the Dons still triumphed.
|Player rating out of ten||Player name||Substitution||Did they score?||Player's disciplinary record||Rating|
|15||Shaun Hutchinson(sub 27)||5/10|
|11||Jamie Murphy(sub 66)||5/10|
|7||Chris Humphrey(sub 66)||5/10|
|20||Jonathan Page(sub 27)||6/10|
|Player rating out of ten||Player name||Did they score?||Player's disciplinary record||Substitution||Rating|
|22||Ryan Jack(sub 32)||5/10|
|23||Mitchel Megginson(sub 82)||5/10|
|17||Fraser Fyvie(sub 70)||7/10|
|5||Youl Mawene(sub 70)||4/10|
|7||Chris Clark(sub 32)||6/10|
|15||Peter Pawlett(sub 82)||4/10|