Maurice Ross defends his switch to Motherwell

By John BarnesBBC Scotland
Maurice Ross in his days at Aberdeen
Ross has played in Scotland, England, Norway, Turkey and China

Maurice Ross says he chose Motherwell over St Mirren because the 30-year-old sees it as a better option to get his career back on track.

The former Rangers defender signed until the end of the season after receiving international clearance from the Chinese Football Association.

And he admitted the delay had left the door open to Motherwell.

"I felt this was a better platform for me and I hope I'm proved right," Ross told BBC Scotland.

"This wasn't about how St Mirren treated me, because Danny Lennon was great with me.

"It wasn't about money, because it's only short-term to get playing again.

"Motherwell seemed a bit more enthused about me coming in.

"The facts are: St Mirren had 10 days to get me in and it took half a day for Motherwell to do it."

The defender capped 13 times for Scotland is happy to be back in football in his homeland after his difficult spell in China with Beijing Guoan.

However, he does not look upon this move as a defined way to shape his future career.

"I've been looking to the future all my life," said Ross, who also played for Sheffield United, Wolves, Millwall, Viking Stavanger, Kocaelispor and Aberdeen.

"I just want to be here, play for now and just take it from there.

"I just want to train and play and feel part of a squad again.

"Even when I was in China, you never feel part of a squad.

"You miss coming in and getting slaughtered for your gear, so I'm just going to enjoy it and work hard and show the management here that they're justified in bringing me in."

Ross played in a bounce game for St Mirren on Tuesday against Hearts but failed to turn up to training with the Paisley club on Thursday - the deadline day for clubs signing out-of-contract players.

Now Scottish Cup semi-finalists Motherwell, who have no fit right-back speciatlist in their squad, will benefit from the work relegation-threatened St Mirren invested in Ross and he is available for Saturday's match against Aberdeen.

"I've been training really hard," he said. "I know it sounds really bad to say, but the St Mirren fitness coach Craig McGinlay was giving me a doing every day and I'm thankful for that.

"He came in on his day off and I came in on my day off trying to get my fitness up to match level. It's hard - I'm not going to be flying - but I think I'm in good nick.

"The manager's obviously expressed that and, come Saturday, we'll see what happens.

"Motherwell had a great result on Wednesday, so the manager might go with the same team, so I might have to bide my time until I get my chance and then it's up to me.

"If I don't play then, I'm sure I'll be doing extra running to get up to speed and be ready for the next game and we'll keep repeating that process until luckily enough I can get into the team."