Dundee Utd 0
St Johnstone 1
League (Premiership)

Dundee Utd
0 - 1
St Johnstone 

League (Premiership)
Wednesday, March 12th, 2014
Tannadice Park. Att. 6,720
7:45 PM Kick-off

None. Stevie May (48)

Team Managers
Jackie McNamara
Tommy Wright

Starting Eleven
1. Radoslaw Cierzniak
26. Andrew Robertson
12. Keith Watson
5. Gavin Gunning
2. Seán Dillon
10. Stuart Armstrong
11. Gary Mackay-Steven
6. Paul Paton
8. John Rankin
18. Ryan Dow
21. Nadir Çiftçi
Alan Mannus
Gary Miller
Brian Easton
David Mackay
Steven Anderson
Gary McDonald
Michael O'Halloran
James Dunne
Stevie May
Chris Millar
David Wotherspoon

25. Marc McCallum
16. Mark Wilson
20. John Souttar
19. Ryan Gauld
27. Morgaro Gomis
9. Brian Graham
29. Farid El Alagui
Steve Banks
Scott Brown
Lee Croft
Tim Clancy
Chris Iwelumo
Nigel Hasselbaink
Patrick Cregg

Ryan Gauld for Ryan Dow (66)
Farid El Alagui for Stuart Armstrong (66)
Brian Graham for Seán Dillon (85)
Tim Clancy for Brian Easton (21)
Lee Croft for Michael O'Halloran (83)
Patrick Cregg for Gary Miller (90)

Nadir Çiftçi (74)
Andrew Robertson (77)
David Mackay (68)
Chris Millar (77)
James Dunne (80)
Stevie May (90)

Red Cards
None. None.
Match Officials

Crawford Allan (Referee)

Match Report

United came into this match high in confidence after 5 straight wins and a most recent 5-0 mauling of Inverness Caley in the Highlands. St Johnstone themselves were fighting to gain a top six place while still flying high in the Scottish Cup.

St Johnstone dominated the early part of this match, threatening four times in the opening 15 minutes. Gary McDonald headed David Wotherspoon's near-post corner wide then Cierzniak saved May's shot. Keith Watson cleared a Michael O'Halloran's cutback before May volleyed over from close in. United improved as the game progressed and had two good chances to score themselves. Mackay-Steven rounded Alan Mannus but Dave Mackay blocked the shot. Soon after, Nadir Ciftci passed up an even better chance, firing in a poor effort when it looked easier to score.

It was a soft goal from Stevie May that broke the deadlock soon after half time. Cierzniak looked to have the striker's effort covered but took his eye off the ball and saw it slip out of his grasp and into the goal. United fought back and Mannus had to save a Ciftci's header and push away Ryan Dow's strike. United threw on El Alagui and Ryan Gauld for the last 20 minutes and both were involved in controversial moments that led to the dismissal of both managers. When El Alagui hit the deck in the box after a robust challenge from O'Halloran there were strong claims for a penalty. That was followed by Gauld's mesmerising run being brought to a halt with no free-kick awarded, the United bench reacted furiously, sparking a touchline row between the opposition managers. Soon after Mannus saved from El Alagui following a Robertson cross before Saints survived another penalty claim when Wotherspoon challenged Mackay-Steven in stoppage time. The defeat means United drop to fifth in the table and brings to an end a run of five consecutive victories.

Match Photos courtesy of Riki Grauer - More photos available at:
Dundee United Official Flickr Page

Squad Statistics (as at March 12th, 2014)

2013-14 All Time
Radoslaw Cierzniak (GK)30 34 - 80 -
Seán Dillon30 18 - 2523
Keith Watson24 20412710
Gavin Gunning23 2148710
Andrew Robertson20 345345
Gary Mackay-Steven23 3199621
Stuart Armstrong21 32811513
Paul Paton26 341341
John Rankin30 3221209
Ryan Dow22 192474
Nadir Çiftçi22 30123012
Ryan Gauld (sub)18 277398
Brian Graham (sub)26 264264
Farid El Alagui (sub)28 9292

League Table (as at March 12th, 2014)

No league table has been added for this season.

Manager's Programme Notes

Obviously, it was extremely pleasing to reach the semi-finals of the Scottish Cup again and the fine win at Inverness saw us carry on from where we had left off in the two previous league games against Motherwell and Hibs. The first half of the game against Motherwell at Tannadice was about as good as it gets and I don't think it's an exaggeration to say that we were exceptional. We moved the ball really well and had good energy which brought enough chances to have put the game to bed when we went three up so shortly after the restart. It was disappointing to lose a goal after conceding a needless penarty but, although that gave Motherwell a bit of a lift, we were still very worthy winners. And we continued the winning run that started against St Mirren in the Scottish Cup at Easter Road, where we were excellent right throughout the team. Even although we missed two penalties, we still achieved the win we thoroughly deserved. Despite their spot-kick failures, I'll never criticise either Nadir or GMS, because they scored penalties for us earlier in the season. It just meant that I told Gavin Gunning to take over on Sunday - and didn't he make an excellent job of it! It was frustrating to go in level with Hibs at half time, because again it was a game that we should have had wrapped up well before we did. But that's the only minor criticism that can be levelled after another tremendous performance.

Turning to tonight's match, clearly our last meeting with St Johnstone was very disappointing, going down to ten men and losing the way we did. But I always prefer to look forward rather than reflect on the past and that's the way I like to focus the players' minds, too. Given the way recent resuks have gone for both clubs, St Johnstone are now looking to try and catch us in the Premiership, Our lead over them could have been even bigger because on several occasions this season we have drawn games that we should have won, a point borne out by the fact that we have lost fewer games than any club apart from Celtic. We're on a good run at the moment and it's vital that we keep that going and maintain the pressure on the clubs above us.