Motherwell: Lionel Ainsworth signs contract to stay at Fir Park

Winger Lionel Ainsworth nets for Motherwell against Inverness Caledonian Thistle.
Lionel Ainsworth proved prolific for Motherwell during his loan stint

Motherwell have signed Lionel Ainsworth on a one-year contract, following the winger's successful spell on loan at Fir Park last season.

The 26-year-old, whose Rotherham deal ended this summer, scored 11 goals and set up 12 last term as the Steelmen finished second in the Premiership.

And Motherwell say they beat off competition from Scotland, England, and abroad to secure his signature.

"I'm happy it's sorted, I love the club," Ainsworth told 'Well's website.external-link

"In the short space of time I've been here everyone in and around the club have been brilliant, and I feel at home here.

"I managed to hit the ground running last year and hopefully I can carry that on to next season.

"It would be amazing if I could score more goals next season and get more assists, but I know I have to go out there and give my all to keep my spot in the team.

"We achieved great things last year and I'm sure we can go out and do it again."

With Jack Leitch,Keith Lasley,Craig Moore,Craig Reid,Steven Hammell and Stephen McManus having already agreed new deals at 'Well, who are in the Europa League thanks to their second-place finish, manager Stuart McCall was thrilled to tie up Ainsworth.

"We are delighted to have Lionel on-board again, it's another piece of summer transfer work taken care of early," McCall said.

"He made such a massive contribution last season, particularly around the Christmas and New Year period when he was flying high and practically unplayable in certain games.

"To have such a scoring threat from midfield is vital for any side, but he also contributes by creating goals for our strikers.

"With a strong pre-season behind him and the platform of playing in the Europa League to look forward to, it should be a big season for him."

Meanwhile, defender Shaun Hutchinson has signed for English Championship side Fulham after rejecting a new contract at Motherwell.