February 16, 2013
Motherwell assistant manager Kenny Black refused to rule out an offer for James McFadden but revealed the forward's recent return to the Fir Park fold was similar to his early-season training stint.
Team Stat Comparison
|Motherwell||Inverness Caledonian Thistle|
|Goals for *||1.8||1.5|
|Goals against *||1.3||1.7|
|Last 5 home||W-W-D-W-W||L-W-D-W-D|
|Last 5 away||L-L-W-W-D||L-L-L-W-D|
|* Goals per match - home matches for home club and away matches for away club|
|Stats: Motherwell | Inverness Caledonian Thistle|
|Motherwell||Inverness Caledonian Thistle|
|3/19||H: Inverness Caledonian Thistle||3/12||H: Hibernian|
|3/22||H: Ross County||3/19||A: Motherwell|
|3/29||H: Kilmarnock||3/22||H: Partick Thistle|
|4/1||A: Inverness Caledonian Thistle||3/26||A: Dundee United|
|4/5||A: St Mirren||3/29||H: St Mirren|
McFadden is back training with Motherwell after a brief spell at Sunderland ended and a move to Nottingham Forest fell through when he travelled to the City Ground on the day Alex McLeish left his short reign as manager there.
McFadden, who hit 32 goals for Motherwell as a teenager, has already been back at the club for two weeks and a move looks unlikely after contract talks with Fir Park chief executive Leeann Dempster failed to come to fruition before he signed for Sunderland.
Black, speaking at the pre-match media conference ahead of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League clash with Inverness, said: "James has come in very similar to what he did a few months back. He came in looking for training facilities.
"We are more than willing to accommodate him. James came in, got himself fit and got himself a move to Sunderland.
"He is now back up and it's really much of the same.
"He is keeping himself ticking over, a local lad, and we're happy to have him on board.
"That's as far as it goes, nothing has changed from the last time he was here.''
Motherwell manager Stuart McCall had some money left in his playing budget but with 10 players out of contract in the summer he might want to plan for the long term instead of trying to sign McFadden on a short-term deal.
Black added: "I don't know the finances in regards to if we can offer him anything.
"I do know that we have lost Jamie Murphy and brought Kallum Higginbotham in and we have a lot of frustrated players at Motherwell.
"Bob McHugh did tremendous during the week and scored a hat-trick for the under-20s.
"Whether we can accommodate James McFadden will probably be for the chief executive to deal with.
"It makes sense if you have the finances to do it. I don't know how many games James got at Sunderland.
"But we are certainly happy to have him in because he is well-liked around the place.''
Motherwell are without the suspended Keith Lasley and Fraser Kerr against Inverness.
Midfielder Lasley and defender Kerr were both sent off in the final stages of Motherwell's 2-0 defeat by Kilmarnock last weekend.
Inverness midfielder Owain Tudur Jones admits victory over Motherwell would be sweet following their two painful defeats against the Lanarkshire side in an otherwise memorable season.
Caley Thistle only lost three times before the winter break - once to Celtic and twice against Stuart McCall's team.
Michael Higdon netted a hat-trick when Motherwell won 4-1 at Fir Park in September and the next time Inverness lost was a 5-1 home thrashing by the Steelmen, their only defeat in a run of 21 games.
Inverness go into Saturday's Clydesdale Bank Premier League clash one point above their hosts in second place but McCall's team have a game in hand.
Tudur Jones said: "It would be nice to get the points against them, that's for sure.
"They are probably looking at the table thinking 'how are Inverness above us' after the way they have pumped us twice.
"It's a good game for us, it's a game we feel we have to be right at it.
"Previously against Motherwell we have conceded sloppy goals early in the game and conceded a second one soon after.
"We have to make sure we are ready to go.''
Inverness are looking for their first victory in six games after their return to winning ways was delayed when Borja Perez struck a last-minute equaliser past Ryan Esson on Wednesday night with Kilmarnock's first shot on target of the game.
"It was a bit of a sickener,'' Tudur Jones said.
"We played well, we kept the ball pretty well and really limited them to almost nothing, I don't think Ess in goal had anything to do. It makes it hugely disappointing.
"It has happened a fair few times this season and is something that will need sorting out.''
Inverness will still be without captain Richie Foran who has missed two games with a knee injury.