3 - 1
3 - 1
Johnny Russell (2)
Willo Flood (62)
Michael Gardyne (89)
|Michael Ngoo (76)|
1. Radoslaw Cierzniak
3. Barry Douglas
12. Keith Watson
5. Gavin Gunning
2. Seán Dillon
6. Willo Flood
16. Stuart Armstrong
11. Gary Mackay-Steven
8. John Rankin
7. Johnny Russell
9. Jon Daly
13. Steve Banks
44. John Souttar
4. Brian McLean
14. Mark Millar
10. Richie Ryan
15. Michael Gardyne
18. Ryan Dow
Brian McLean for Gavin Gunning (72)
Michael Gardyne for Gary Mackay-Steven (77)
Darren Barr for Marius Zaliukas (19)
Scott Robinson for Jamie Walker (67)
John Sutton for Billy King (67)
Willo Flood (62)
Fraser Mullen (27)
Danny Wilson (65)
Andy Webster (70)
|None.||Ryan Stevenson (25)|
Willie Collum (Referee)
For his first league game in charge of Dundee United, Jackie McNamara kept faith with the same starting line-up that had comfortably defeated Rangers 3-0 at Tannadice in the Scottish Cup the previous weekend.
After a lightening quick start against Rangers the previous week United were at it again - although this time it took a whole 2 minutes for Johnny Russell to find the net. After bravely winning the ball on the left wing Russell made his way into the box. Mackay-Steven then fed in John Rankin who cut a dangerous ball back for Russell 8 yards out. United’s top scorer turned and superbly fired home low to the left of visiting keeper MacDonald. Hearts captain Marius Zaliukas was forced off through injury after 17 minutes after an awkward landing as he challenged Russell in the air. Michael Ngoo then struck a shot off the bar in 20 minutes with a shot on the turn from outside the box which had beaten Cierzniak. Things then turned worse for Hearts as Ryan Stevenson slid in to challenge Mackay-Steven in midfield and went right through the United man. With ref William Collum close by he viewed the incident as worthy of a straight red card. Chances became few and far between but a United break in 41 minutes saw Daly feed in MacKay-Steven, but in the end the wingers shot was easily held by MacDonald.
The second half opened with United enjoying an overwhelming share of possession. It did take until the 55th minute to carve out an opening however as Daly tested MacDonald. Russell cut in from the right and delivered a teasing ball into the 6 yard box, which Daly touched towards goal at full stretch only for the Hearts keeper to parry out to safety. With Hearts sitting in and allowing United to keep possession it was going to take some great invention to break through and in the 63rd minute that moment arrived for the hosts. Russell, who had been probing away at the Hearts defence all afternoon, slipped a perfectly weighted through ball to Willo Flood. The midfielder stayed composed and rolled a clean finish past MacDonald to double the lead. Lapping up the acclaim from the home fans, Flood then stung the palms of MacDonald with a fierce long range shot before Ngoo struck the bar for a second time for Hearts. After Flood had slipped whilst waiting to take a pass from Gavin Gunning, the Hearts attacker was unlucky to see a curling right foot shot again beat Cierzniak only to come back off the woodwork. Despite this United appeared comfortable with their lead – that was until Hearts pulled a goal back in 76 minutes. The United defence failed to deal with a Mullen corner, and as the ball dropped to Michael Ngoo 10 yards out he blasted into Cierzniak’s left corner. There was no panic from the Tannadice side however and they continued to control possession. As a result of great play on the left from Rankin who set up Daly, the game was ended as a contest when the Irish striker presented sub Michael Gardyne with an opportunity barely 3 yards out. For the second time this season the former Ross County player netted and an excellent afternoon for the Tangerines was rounded off.
|Radoslaw Cierzniak (GK)||29||31||-||31||-|
|Brian McLean (sub)||27||21||-||21||-|
|Michael Gardyne (sub)||27||24||2||24||2|
No league table has been added for this season.
Given last Saturday's win over Rangers, I couldn't have wished, nor scripted, a better start to my managerial career here at Tannadice. If only every game could start in that manner! I was actually questioning why we played the ball back and not forward from kick off, but the flick on from Jon and touch and finish by Johnny was excellent. I thought we looked dangerous throughout Whilst realistic enough to know we cannot expect the same turnout of home fans for every game, I do believe that once we are playing in the manner and style I want us to play, fans will turn out and enjoy watching us. So thanks for playing your part in helping make my first game so enjoyable for all concerned.
Coming away from zonal marking, I think this took Rangers by surprise. Also keeping two up the park at corners worked well last Saturday. As a former defender I take great satisfaction from what was our first clean sheet in eight games. The changes continued this week with Darren Jackson having joined our coaching staff. I know Darren couldn't wait to get involved, and I am sure he will be a great addition to our staff. Going back to last week, I though the backing form the fans for the whole 90 minutes was fantastic and really helped the players raise their performance. From the sharpness up front to the work rate in midfield and solidness at the back, we didn't have a failure in the side.
And the fact that we have another tough game this week as we welcome John McGlynn's Hearts, but testing yourself against the best js exactly the kind of challenge we want to face every week. Having got that long awaited home win under our belt last week, we need to start doing likewise in the league. But we know it will be difficult, but if go about against Rangers, I am sure we'll cause Hearts a tot of problems.