Motherwell captain Keith Lasley keen to avoid play-off pressure

Motherwell captain Keith Lasley
Motherwell captain Keith Lasley

Motherwell captain Keith Lasley is keen to avoid the Premiership play-offs, having experienced them two years ago.

With four games remaining, the Steelmen occupy 11th place in the Premiership table, a position Lasley describes as "a pressure situation".

Well beat Rangers 6-1 over two legs in the play-off final in 2015.

"The aggregate scoreline looked great, but the actual experience itself was not very enjoyable, I can assure you," Lasley told BBC Scotland.

"The play-offs are something I don't want to experience again and I know the other guys who were involved don't want to be.

"The message for the guys who weren't involved is certainly loud and clear. We would take a nice boring eighth- or ninth-place finish right now."

Motherwell are seven points ahead of bottom side Inverness Caley Thistle, with only one point separating them from 10th-placed Hamilton Accies and Dundee in ninth.

Nail biting times for Motherwell
Nail-biting times for Motherwell

As well as using their previous play-off experience to help to ensure they retain their Premiership status, the Motherwell players have also been told to consider the futures of other staff at their club who will be affected should the team be relegated.

"As a player you're so focused on your own training and preparing for each game so you kind of forget everything that's going on round about you," said Lasley.

"There is such good work going on at this football club, such as season ticket initiatives and the Well Society, so we know the primary driver for all of that is what happens on a Saturday, so it's time for us to stand up and do our bit."

Lasley revealed that Motherwell manager Stephen Robinson has made it clear to the players that the onus is on them.

The midfielder continued: "Players will always get another chance, managers and coaches get opportunities somewhere at some stage, but other people don't, so we know the importance and we value that importance."

Robinson says he listened to the impassioned interview given by Raith Rovers manager John Hughes earlier in the week, during which he too spoke about the players' responsibilities.

"I listened to the interview and he was 100% right about humility and about the people's lives it affects," said the manager.

"So we've made that clear to everyone and we've asked everyone to pull that together because this is a club that is important to everybody's hearts."

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