Motherwell manager Stuart Kettlewell described Theo Bair’s international call-up as just reward for his hard work and ambition along with the efforts of many others at the club.

Bair has been included in the Canada squad ahead of their CONCACAF Nations League play-off against Trinidad and Tobago on March 23.

The former St Johnstone striker, 24, won his second and most recent cap in 2020 after scoring on his international debut and has been recalled after producing nine goals and three assists in his past 10 cinch Premiership games for Motherwell.

“I know when Theo came here he had a real ambition to back get in that Canadian squad. It’s his just reward, he has been working tirelessly,” said Kettlewell, who has also seen the likes of Liam Kelly, Adam Devine, Lennon Miller, Bevis Mugabi and Davor Zdravkovski get international recognition.

“We are delighted for him and all the lads who have had international call-ups.

“I think he is the most humble person I have ever met. He thinks he has loads to go, as do we.

“When you look into how he is performing, I thought there were so many good qualities early in the season, but you can see how much it evolves when there’s a bit of confidence in there, once he starts hitting the back of the net.

“It’s just fine margins, different types of movement, utilising his frame and his physicality, probably getting him fitter. His work rate is top drawer, he presses from the front.

“It’s taken him time to get there and big Theo will acknowledge that, because he is probably a bit of a baby when you look at the game time he has played.

“He didn’t come here with loads of minutes, 24 years old doesn’t mean you are sitting there with 150-200 appearances. I believe when you have that trust and opportunity to play, that’s when you see the fruits of your labour.

“Now with that level of confidence, you start to see him maybe take part in elements of the game where before he was maybe looking at one of his team-mates.”

Motherwell recently gave an insight into the work they and Bair have been doing behind the scenes to spark his prolific run, including footage of video analysis sessions.

“Ross Clarkson and Graeme McArthur, our two analysts, are absolutely sensational at what they do, the level of detail they go to, but the bit that goes unnoticed is the work ethic,” Kettlewell said. “We feel we have that in the staff in general.

“We have players who go to lengths to get the best out of their career but also all the staff have that same vision and ambition for your career.

“But we need guys who are coachable and want the best out of their career. If we get that we will give them every minute of every day to meet the goals they set themselves but also what we think they can get to.”

Meanwhile Jon Obika has suffered another hamstring injury in training having already had three lay-offs with a similar issue over the past 12 months.

“I don’t have a specific update, we will have him scanned and find out what’s going on,” Kettlewell said.

New signing Moses Ebiye could feature against Aberdeen on Saturday but Kettlewell warned the 26-year-old Nigerian striker had not played a competitive game for some time, having left Norwegian side Aalesund in January.

“He has taken part in every training session and has had minutes on the pitch in a bounce game,” he said. “But I need to manage expectations. I think he can possibly give us something at this stage but it’s very, very early.”

Aberdeen substitute Duk hit a double as the Dons came from three goals down to claim a 3-3 draw against Motherwell in Neil Warnock’s first league match at Pittodrie.

The visitors looked set to bounce back from their cup defeat by Morton as Theo Bair’s double and Adam Devine’s strike put them in a commanding position inside 26 minutes.

But Duk soon netted 30 seconds after coming on as part of a double substitution and the attacker levelled five minutes after the break after Stefan Gartenmann had pulled another goal back.

Both sides went on to have goals disallowed and both will no doubt be disappointed with a point, which leaves each of them three points outside the cinch Premiership top six.

With Pascal Jensen dropping out through illness, Warnock started with three defenders – Gartenmann, Nicky Devlin and Jack MacKenzie.

His side looked vulnerable at the back and Motherwell were ahead inside five minutes after Shayden Morris clumsily brought down Georgie Gent inside the box. Bair hit the penalty into the roof of the net.

Aberdeen had their moments in the opening half hour. Bojan Miovski got in behind and forced a save from Liam Kelly, while Connor Barron and Morris threatened from outside the box.

But Motherwell came closer when Kelle Roos tipped Jack Vale’s volley on to a post and stopped Bair’s follow-up.

The visitors doubled their lead in the 22nd minute when Bair tapped home Gent’s cross from five yards for his eighth goal in his last six league games.

They were three up and apparently cruising four minutes later when Devine marked his first start for the club by steering home Blair Spittal’s blocked shot after some direct running from Harry Paton had left Aberdeen’s back three exposed.

Boos rang round Pittodrie and Warnock started plotting changes which came on the half-hour mark as attacker Duk and centre-back Angus MacDonald came on for midfielders Dante Polvara and Morris.

Duk instantly made his mark, turning home after Motherwell had lost possession from their own throw-in deep in their half.

The deficit was further reduced in the 37th minute following Barron’s inswinging corner. Devlin was allowed a free header and Gartenmann converted the rebound following Kelly’s save.

The Dons continued to exploit Motherwell’s vulnerability from set-pieces. Leighton Clarkson, twice, and MacDonald threatened before the equaliser came following a throw-in. Graeme Shinnie was allowed space to cross and Duk outmuscled Devine to head into the far corner.

Aberdeen thought they had completed the turnaround midway through the second half when Miovski bundled the ball home from close range. The striker was flagged offside and a lengthy VAR check confirmed the decision, although he looked level to the naked eye.

Warnock’s side kept knocking on the door and Gartenmann headed against the crossbar from another Barron inswinger.

Motherwell were struggling to retain possession long enough to relieve the pressure, but they were celebrating in the 80th minute after Paton turned the ball home after a corner led to a goalmouth scramble.

The home side claimed for at least one foul and referee Kevin Clancy disallowed the goal after seeing Calum Butcher push Jamie McGrath with two hands on his VAR monitor.

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