Dundee Utd 4
Hearts 1
League (Premier Division)

Dundee Utd
4 - 1

League (Premier Division)
Saturday, December 27th, 1980
Tannadice Park. Att. 6,928
3:00 PM Kick-off

Paul Sturrock (32)
Ralph Milne (66)
Ralph Milne (68)
Paul Sturrock (79)
Willie Gibson (2)

Team Managers
Jim McLean
Bobby Moncur

Starting Eleven
Hamish McAlpine
Paul Hegarty
Frank Kopel
Iain Phillip
Dave Narey
John Holt
Ralph Milne
Ian Gibson
Eamonn Bannon
Paul Sturrock
Davie Dodds
John Brough
Colin More
Willie McVie
Jim Denny
Peter Shields
Bobby Robinson
Alex Hamill
Willie Gibson
Derek O'Connor
Paul O'Brien
Bobby Masterton

Billy Kirkwood
Willie Pettigrew
Gary Mackay
Walter Kidd

None. None.

None. None.

Red Cards
None. None.
Match Officials

Alex McGunnigle (Glasgow) (Referee)

Match Report

Hearts may have been stranded near the foot of the table, but that didn't prevent them taking a shock second minute lead. Brough's long punt was headed on by O'Connor and then O'Brien, allowing Gibson to belt in the opener as the United defence remained static looking for an offside decision which never came. United's equaliser in the 32nd minute was similar in build-up. Hamish McAlpine's clearance upfield was mis-kicked by Shields and Paul Sturrock homed in on goal to pick his spot.

United had a hard fight to get back on level terms, but in the second half they bombarded the Tynecastle goal and it was only a question of time before United went ahead. Two goals in as many minutes killed off Hearts resistance. First Ralph Milne collected a long throw from John Holt and hammered home the second from 15 yards. Then a couple of minutes later in the 67th minute Ralph Milne followed up to net after a Paul Hegarty's header from an Eamonn Bannon corner came back off the bar. United completed a comfortable enough victory in the end when Paul Sturrock again took advantage of slack defending from Hearts. Denny's header from a long kick out by Hamish McAlpine landed into the path of the united striker who tobbed home the fourth.

Squad Statistics (as at December 27th, 1980)

1980-81 All Time
Hamish McAlpine (GK)32 34 - 4433
Paul Hegarty26 34727246
Iain Phillip29 27 - 761
Frank Kopel31 27 - 36713
Dave Narey24 32131621
John Holt24 18112711
Eamonn Bannon22 3166210
Ian Gibson24 8181
Ralph Milne19 145358
Paul Sturrock24 341725372
Davie Dodds22 2199931

League Table (as at December 27th, 1980)

Pld W D L +/- Pts
1. Aberdeen 19 13 5 1 +28 31
2. Celtic 20 13 2 5 +16 28
3. Rangers 18 8 8 2 +20 24
4. United 19 7 7 5 +2 21
5. St Mirren 19 7 5 7 +4 19
6. Morton 20 6 7 7 -6 19
7. Partick Th 20 6 5 9 -9 17
8. Airdrie 19 4 7 8 -9 15
9. Hearts 19 3 5 11 -15 11
10. Kilmarnock 19 1 5 13 -31 7

Manager's Programme Notes

In welcoming you back to Tannadice this afternoon I trust that you have all spent a. thoroughly enjoyable festive period over the past couple of days. The Christmas celebrations over, we welcome rejuvenated Hearts as our visitors for what seems certain to be a tight and hard-fought clash. The men from Tynecastle have been displaying a remarkable improvement in recent weeks — a change of fortune which followed our win in Edinburgh over them in November. Strangely enough, although we won in the end quite comfortably 3-0, I personally rate that display of ours as one of our worst of the season. In fact we took our goals from virtually nothing that afternoon, a rare occasion that for anyone in the Premier League.

But despite their ordinary home form Bobby Moncur's side has shown, like so many others in the Top Ten, their best: form in away matches. Mind you, as I say, they are not alone in that with the tendancy to close things up early in every game clearly bringing rewards to many of those who try it. And that's where the danger occurs for our own side who often tend to fall into the inevitable trap set by such opponents. But as far as I am concerned I firmly believe that home success keeps you the fans happiest, and therefore we will be continuing to attempt to get results — wherever we play!

As I have said before, to achieve this the players must accept the inevitable responsibility. And to those who won't accept that I say, the modern game is what it is. It will not change, so therefore you must!