Baraclough: We can escape

Date published: Saturday 2nd May 2015 6:54

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His team were held to a 1-1 draw at Fir Park as the Staggies maintained a six-point lead over the 11th-placed side with three games left.

However, the Steelmen were given a glimmer of hope with Kilmarnock losing 3-2 at home to Hamilton. The Ayrshire side are also six points clear of Motherwell but visit Fir Park on Friday night in another crunch match.

Baraclough said: “Kilmarnock have got to come here and they got beat again today. If we can beat them next week with the same application and intensity, then it really turns the heat up.

“We are not resigned to playing an extra two games by any means. It’s still there for us.”

Scott McDonald gave Motherwell a 20th-minute lead when he stabbed home Josh Law’s low cross, but Mark O’Brien’s poor attempt at an overhead clearance allowed County’s Liam Boyce to level with four minutes left in the first half.

Motherwell pushed forward after the break but lacked composure in the final third and also some fortune, with Stephen Pearson having a decent penalty claim rejected following Scott Boyd’s desperate challenge.

Baraclough said: “There were two teams giving absolutely nothing away and the intensity never dropped. From both sides, the commitment and desire was fantastic.

“The boys did everything we asked, made them defend, last-ditch tackles and but for the roll of the ball at times, we could have had a lot more goals.”

On the equaliser, he added: “It was a difficult position to defend from, a ball in behind, and it wasn’t dealt with as well as we probably could have done.

“But before that we scored a fantastic goal, the movement and passing was very good on a difficult surface. I felt as though we had a lot more chances than they did.”

County manager Jim McIntyre praised his side for digging in for a point that sets them up nicely for consecutive home games against St Mirren and Hamilton.

He said: “Motherwell, without a shadow of a doubt, were the better side for periods of the first half, especially the first 25 minutes, but we got ourselves back in the game with a great goal from Liam and a fabulous finish. That was pleasing that we didn’t play that well but showed the character.

“I don’t think there was a great deal of quality in the second half, the wind certainly never helped either side, and obviously the tension with what’s at stake, both sides were guilty of being a bit wasteful.

“The important thing was, if we weren’t going to win the match, just make sure we don’t lose it. I was really pleased with the battling qualities of the players.”

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