HAMMELL HAPPY WITH EXPECTATION
Motherwell full-back Stevie Hammell is happy with the pressure that comes with pushing for a Champions League qualifying spot.
Motherwell go into the last five games five points ahead of St Johnstone in third place in the SPL.
Stuart McCall's side have been in the top three for the whole season but face a challenge from the in-form Saints, Dundee United and Hearts for a Champions League place, which is on offer amid Rangers' financial woes.
Hammell told MFCTV: "With the success we have had comes a different pressure.
"There is a pressure of getting to the top six and then pressure getting amongst the European spots. Because of where we are in the league we become more of a scalp
"Teams have to raise their games against us. Pressure comes with that and it's the business end now and there is more pressure and different pressure from what we are used to.
"Once the expectation to finish third comes, you go into games as favourites and people expect you to win.
"You need to handle that and we have done to a certain point this season."
Hammell added: "It's a positive, it's where you want to be.
"You want to be at the top end of the table, you don't want to be seventh or eighth and can't go anywhere. This is what you play for.
"If we did get Champions League football it would be one of the best achievements the club has ever done."
Motherwell host Celtic on Sunday looking for their first points against the Old Firm this season.
"One thing missing from an otherwise great season, our record against the Old Firm is poor, there is no getting away from that," Hammell said.
"But the boys are confident. We believe we can win the game, I believe we can win any game we play.
"There is a lot at stake and we have to be focused."
The 30-year-old is out of contract in the summer but is keen to tie up a new deal.
"I'd be really happy to stay, that's what I want to do," he said.
"I love it here, I enjoy playing football here. The fans are excellent, I know everybody at the club and most of the fans as well.
"Hopefully we can sit down soon and get something sorted."
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