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Page last updated at 22:33 GMT, Thursday, 19 August 2010 23:33 UK

Late Motherwell goal was richly deserved says Brown


Away goal changes tie - Brown

Motherwell manager Craig Brown insists Tom Hateley's last-minute goal from a free-kick was a just reward in their 2-1 Europa League defeat in Odense.

Brown said: "I don't think we deserved to lose the game, quite honestly.

"We showed we are as good a team as they are and if we play properly in the home game we have a good chance."

Odense were two goals up thanks to a Chris Sorensen free-kick and a fine Peter Utaka strike before Hateley's goal kept Motherwell's hopes alive.

Having made the play-off stage after aggregate wins over Breidablik and Aalesunds, Motherwell must now beat the Danes at Fir Park to progress to the Europa League.

However, with that away goal, a 1-0 win would suffice, leaving Brown feeling upbeat.

We had two very good penalty claims, I've seen them on television

Motherwell manager Craig Brown

"It's only half-time but that goal is invaluable because a 2-1 defeat is better than a 1-0 defeat. But they are a good side and it's far from over."

The Motherwell boss was angered, though, at the red card shown by referee Zsolt Szabo to Steve Jennings in the 88th minute.

"To go 2-0 down was very harsh and I thought the red card was very soft - two soft yellow cards and, of course, the Danish players made the most of it," added Brown.

"Jenno feels very aggrieved. He thought they were hardly fouls never mind yellow cards, but we're losing him for the next game."

Motherwell also felt the referee should have awarded two penalties, first when John Sutton's header hit Anders Moller Christensen on the hand just before half-time, and then in the 73rd minute when Espen Ruud nudged Jamie Murphy off the ball.

"We had two very good penalty claims, I've seen them on television," Brown said.

Tom Hateley celebrates his goal in Odense
Hateley celebrates his goal that keeps Motherwell's hopes alive

"The handling is blatant and Murphy was pushed off the ball. It knocked him right off balance. So we could have had two penalty-kicks as well."

Odense went ahead when no Motherwell player reacted with enough conviction to clear Sorensen's in-swinging free-kick in the 31st minute.

And when Utaka sped free and finished high into the net with 12 minutes to go, it looked bleak for the Lanarkshire side.

But Hateley's re-taken 25-yard free-kick past former Manchester United goalkeeper Roy Carroll changed the complexion for the second leg.

When Hateley took the free-kick the first time he tried to cross it into the box, and when Szabo ordered a re-take after some jostling in the box, assistant manager Archie Knox yelled an instruction to the player.

Brown said: "He was going to cross and I said to Archie, 'Tell him to shoot'. Archie has got the voice.

"He's got a great shot, we saw that in the game against Rangers last season, a similar goal."

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see also
Odense BK 2-1 Motherwell
19 Aug 10 |  Europe
Motherwell complain over missiles
19 Aug 10 |  Motherwell
Steelmen out to defy Danes
18 Aug 10 |  Motherwell

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