Dundee Utd 2
Ayr Utd 1
League (Championship)

Dundee Utd
2 - 1
Ayr Utd 

League (Championship)
Tuesday, March 28th, 2017
Tannadice Park. Att. 4,661
7:45 PM Kick-off

Simon Murray (23)
Mark Durnan (78)
Gary Harkins (pen.) (51)

Team Managers
Ray McKinnon
Ian McCall

Starting Eleven
1. Cammy Bell
4. Mark Durnan
14. William Edjenguélé
8. Stewart Murdoch
24. Jamie Robson
19. Tony Andreu
16. Willo Flood
11. Alex Nicholls
12. Charlie Telfer
18. Thomas Mikkelsen
9. Simon Murray
Greg Fleming
Nicky Devlin
Paddy Boyle
Daryll Meggatt
Conrad Balatoni
Brian Gilmour
Michael Rose
Robbie Crawford
Ross Docherty
Craig Moore
Gary Harkins

21. Luis Zwick
3. Paul Dixon
5. Coll Donaldson
20. Frank van der Struijk
22. Ali Coote
17. Wato Kuaté
23. Nick van der Velden
Peter Murphy
Alan Forrest
Paul Cairney
Farid El Alagui
Jordan Hart
Michael Wardrope
Craig McGuffie

Ali Coote for Alex Nicholls (70)
Wato Kuaté for Simon Murray (90)
Farid El Alagui for Gary Harkins (61)
Alan Forrest for Craig Moore (72)
Craig McGuffie for Robbie Crawford (85)

None. Daryll Meggatt (64)
Ross Docherty (85)
Nicky Devlin (87)

Red Cards
None. None.
Match Officials

Barry Cook (Referee)
Mark McHendry & Joseph Lawson (Assistants)

Match Report

Ray McKinnon made two changes from the team that had lifted the Irn Bru Cup on Saturday, defeating St Mirren 2-1 at Fir Park, with Van der Velden and Ali Coote dropping out in place of January loan signings Alex Nicholls and Thomas Mikkelsen.

The game took a while to get going, United having plenty of possession in the opening twenty minutes, but without penetrating Ayr’s two solid defensive lines of four. Gilmour and Harkins both had attempts which did not trouble Cammy Bell, at the other end decent link up play down both wings, but poor execution of the crosses saw Fleming in the Ayr goal with little to do. United won the first corner of the match on twenty three minutes. Andreu’s attempt to get to the cross was deflected wide to Simon Murray. He cut in with pace, slid the ball through Devlin’s legs and then did the same to Fleming to fire United into a well deserved lead. Similar to Saturday, United appeared to switch off after taking the lead and it took a last ditch effort by Durnan to stop ex-Dundee man Harkins from equalising. United fans were not taking kindly to some of referee Cook’s decisions as he gave two quick free kicks in Ayr’s advantage and then to add insult to injury failed to acknowledge a wrestling move on Mikkelsen as he challenged for a header in the Ayr box. United finished the half much the stronger side, with Nicholls, Murray and Edjenguele all having chances to extend the lead before the whistle.

The second half got off to the worst possible start for United, five minutes in a quick free by Gilmour down the left saw Crawford drive into the box, under a challenge from Andreu he hit the deck and the referee showed no hesitation in awarding a spot kick to Ayr. Gary Harkins dispatched the spot kick with ease sending Bell to his left and the ball high into the right of the net. The equaliser appeared to give Ayr a lift and they began to push men forward as they looked to capitalise on an increasingly nervous United defence. United nearly regained the lead as the game hit the sixtieth minute, Andreu, after great set up play from Mikkelsen stinging Fleming’s palms with a wicked drive. The rebound fell to the feet of the onrushing Nicholls but his drive from wide on the left only found the side netting. Meggatt received the first caution of the game for some more wrestling antics on Mikkelsen, as the game began to flow from end to end. Coote replaced Nicholls for United and Forrest came on for Moore with around twenty minutes of the game remaining. Murray then drove a shot under Fleming, but the Ayr keeper just managed to stop it spinning under his body to prevent United going ahead. They did take the lead with twelve minutes remaining, Mark Durnan fired home from close range following a scramble in the box, after Fleming struggled to clear Telfer’s corner. Coote nearly added to the advantage but his shot was well blocked after Andreu’s cross, Murray then tested Fleming as United looked to make sure of the three points. Former United frontman El Alagui did have the ball in the net for Ayr, but the effort was ruled out as he was clearly offside. Simon Murray had the United’s final chance blazing over when there were options either side, he was subsequently withdrawn, replaced by recent signing Wato Kuate. Ayr almost equalised with the last kick of the ball as Bell, Durnan and Murdoch all managed to scramble the ball away as The Honest Men looked to secure a point.

Written by Gordon Aitchison

Squad Statistics (as at March 28th, 2017)

2016-17 All Time
Cammy Bell (GK)30 36 - 36 -
Mark Durnan24 325658
William Edjenguélé29 302302
Stewart Murdoch26 201201
Jamie Robson19 201211
Tony Andreu28 29172917
Willo Flood31 3421867
Alex Nicholls29 8 - 8 -
Charlie Telfer21 292626
Thomas Mikkelsen27 133133
Simon Murray25 38136320
Ali Coote (sub)18 10 - 14 -
Wato Kuaté (sub)21 1 - 1 -

Team Sheet (Scanned Photo)

League Table (as at March 28th, 2017)

Pld W D L +/- Pts
1. Hibernian 29 16 10 3 +26 58
2. Falkirk 30 13 9 8 +15 48
3. Morton 28 13 9 6 +11 48
4. DUNDEE UTD 29 13 8 8 +8 47
5. QOS 30 9 9 12 -5 36
6. Dunfermline 29 8 11 10 -1 35
7. Raith Rovers 30 8 9 13 -12 33
8. Dumbarton 30 7 10 13 -9 31
9. Ayr Utd 30 7 10 13 -18 31
10. St Mirren 29 6 9 14 -15 27

League results since United's last match
25th March 2017
Ayr Utd2-1Dumbarton
Raith Rovers1-1QOS
28th March 2017
Dundee Utd2-1Ayr Utd