Simon Ramsden signs two-year Motherwell deal

Motherwell defender Simon Ramsden

Simon Ramsden has signed a new two-year deal with Scottish Premier League runners-up Motherwell.

The defender joined the Steelmen from Bradford last summer and has made 30 league and European appearances.

The 31-year-old Englishman said: "I'm very happy here. We've settled here nicely. It's just a pleasure to be involved with this team."

Ramsden's new deal will be welcome news for Motherwell fans who fear an exodus of key players from Fir Park.

Motherwell's performances this season have attracted suitors, with , midfielder Nicky Law a target for Rangers, among others, and players' player of the year Michael Higdon very likely to be the subject of offers.

, and Well could also lose forward James McFadden and defender Tom Hateley.

As McCall's men prepare for the trip to Europa League-chasing St Johnstone, Ramsden says he is determined that the team should end the season, and possibly an era, on a high.

But he is not too despondent at the thought of the team being broken up, as long as McCall is there for the rebuild.

"Some of the lads have had incredible seasons and there is going to be interest in them," he said.

"From the club's point of view, it is a shame that we can't hang on to two or three more of them and build again for next season.

"But, as the manager has proven over the last couple of years, if a few go he will bring in a few more and we'll try and do well again next season."

Ramsden's first match in claret and amber last summer was against Panathinaikos and he can look forward to a further taste of European football, when Motherwell play in next season's Europa League qualifiers.

"To be able to make my debut in the Champions League was absolutely brilliant," he said.

"To finish second this season and be a major part of that - I've been very happy."

The versatile defender, who can also play in midfield, does not accept that the talk of players leaving the club has had a negative effect on performances.

He said: "I don't think it has distracted us. When there is interest in lads, they know they have to be at their best so it might have benefited us slightly. It's not something we talk about in the changing room.

"We'll get the game over on Sunday and see what happens with the squad."

Describing Higdon as "a handful" when the pair play against one another in training every day, Ramsden says he hopes that McCall is not poached from Fir Park.

He continued: "Personally it would be a huge loss [if he left] because this is the second time I have played under the manager.

"He signed me for Bradford and brought me up here.

"From the club's and the fans' point of view it would be a loss after what he has done over the last few seasons.

"But on the other hand the manager has just been given manager of the year in the SPL and clubs will be noticing how well he has done with such a small squad, so there is bound to be interest.

"We will all be hoping that he stays."

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