Dunfermline 0 Dundee United 2Saturday, 27th Oct 2018
Ladbrokes Championship: Malaury Martin, Aidan Connolly and Andy Ryan out, in come Ryan Williamson, Tom Beadling and Myles Hippolyte. Paul McMullan (24) 0-1: Billy King (60) 0-2
The second quarter of the Pars Championship campaign began like the first, with Dundee United as opponents. This time the encounter was hosted by East End Park where the Fifers were looking for their first home league win over United since 2007.
Visiting manager Robbie Neilson named the same eleven that started against Inverness Caley Thistle the previous week. Meanwhile Allan Johnston made three changes from the side defeated by Queen of the South last time out. Ryan Williamson, Tom Beadling and Myles Hippolyte all came into the side at the expense of Malaury Martin, Aidan Connolly and Andy Ryan.
The home side kicked off through Faissal El Bakhtaoui attacking the goal at the east end of the stadium. It was the fifth minute before either keeper got involved in serious action and it was United’s Benjamin Siegrist who had to dive low to his left to keep out Hippolyte who had tormented Rachid Bouhenna before hitting a decent effort from the edge of the box.
Williamson forced a seventh minute corner but when James Craigen got in the cross United cleared. There was a good build up from the Pars a few minutes later with Louis Longridge finding James Vincent but Williamson could not control the next pass.
The visitors first attempt at goal came in 14 minutes, Jackson Longridge blocking Billy King’s shot and then Fraser Fyvie crashing the follow up over the crossbar. They had another opportunity when Fraser Aird made a break down the left to punt a long ball to the far side of the box where Paul McMullan drilled a shot on goal only to be blocked by Craigen.
L Longridge switched play out to Williamson on the right and he forced a 21st minute corner but when Craigen delivered Lee Ashcroft disappointingly sent his attempt over the bar.
Midway through the half Referee Steven Kirkland earned the wrath of the home crowd as he awarded Neilson’s side a free kick on the left after it looked much more like El Bakhtaoui had been fouled. Aird sent the ball in from the setpiece 40 yards out and McMULLAN met it at the near post to head in at the near post. 0-1
Lee Robinson held a speculative shot from Fyvie before play travelled to the other end with El Bakhtaoui sending Hippolyte away on the left. He got in a good cutback but there was no one on position to capitalise.
Ten minutes from the break Frederic Frans challenge on El Bakhtaoui warranted a free kick but the offender headed away when Craigen pumped the ball into the United box. A 40th minute setpiece was again dispatched into the opposition box but the keeper came out to steal any chance away from Ashcroft and Hippolyte.
In 44 minutes a long throw in from Hippolyte on the right picked out Faissal in front of goal but his shot was blocked and Ashcroft sent rebound wide right.
Half time: Dunfermline 0 Dundee United 1
The Pars went at their visitors from the kick off causing Bouhenna to halt Hippolyte on the edge of the box and earn a yellow card within 30 seconds. Hippolyte struck the free kick behind off the United wall and the resultant corner was headed away.
At the other end an Aird corner from the left in 50 minutes was hoofed away by Ashcroft. Then five minutes later Aird sent in another from the right touch line and as the defence cleared McMullan crumbled as two defenders came either side of him. There were vain cries for a penalty during which time Robinson and Aird had a barge at each other earning themselves a ticking off from Steven Kirkland.
Disaster struck on the hour when a wayward pass from J Longridge was perfect for McMullan who advanced and squared to KING on the right side of the Pars box. He took a touch, wrong footing his defender before planking his left footed effort in the Pars net. 0-2
Both sides sent on subs in 62 minutes Aidan Connolly taking the place of James Craigen and Billy King being replaced by Nicky Clark. The former Pars striker made an immediate impact earning himself a yellow card with his first involvement!
Two fouls one on each of the two extremities, allowed Aird to deliver dangerous crosses into the Pars six yard box but Robinson fisted away. Then Williamson got wide right and his cut back found Hippolyte before El Bakhtaoui got the shot away but just off target. In 72 minutes Beadling created a chance for himself with clever control on the edge of the penalty area but his effort went the same way as his team mates.
When United swept forward in 76 minutes Booth’s cross was put behind for a corner on the left but when that came over it was too high for Pavol Safranco. United failed to take advantage of an 81st minute penalty, McMullan sending the spot kick wide right with Robinson going the right way.
Sam Stanton was yellow carded when trying to win another penalty and it was the United midfielder who had the next opportunity to thrash a shot on target but that was blocked. The Tayside club pressed as the game edged towards its conclusion.
Sub Joe Thomson earned an 88th minute corner but Connolly’s inswinger from the right was all too easily held by Siegrist. Another corner allowed Connolly to try again, this time the keeper dropped the ball and there was a scramble before Ashcroft sent his shot over the top. Ryan had the final chance and looked certain to score but the United keeper stick out his leg to keep him out.
SUBS NOT USED: Malaury Martin, Aidan Keena, Robbie Muirhead, Cammy Gill (GK)
YELLOW CARD: El Bakhtaoui (24)
DUNDEE UNITED: Benjamin Siegrist: Stewart Murdoch, Rachid Bouhenna, Frederic Frans, Callum Booth: Billy King (Nicky Clark 63), Fraser Fyvie, Sam Stanton, Fraser Aird (Christoph Rabitsch 78), Pavol Safranko (Craig Curran 90+1), Paul McMullan.
SUBS NOT USED: Yannick Loemba, William Edjenguele, Matty Smith, Matej Rakovan (GK)
SCORERS: McMullan (24), King (60)
YELLOW CARD: Frans (43), Bouhenna (46), Stanton (82), Fyvie (90+1)
REFEREE: Steven Kirkland
WEATHER: Sunny 6C
NEXT MATCH: Ladbrokes Championship: (away) v Inverness Caley Thistle, Tuesday 30th October 2018 7.45pm kick off at the Tulloch Caledonian Stadium
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Preview Dundee UnitedSaturday, 27th Oct 2018
Ladbrokes Championship: (home) Saturday 27th October 2018, kick off 3.00pm at East End Park.
Dunfermline Athletic will be at home for the third consecutive Saturday and will be looking to repeat the kind of form that saw them win the opening league match of the season at Tannadice on 4th August.
The fans loved it, not just because of the quality of football their team produced, but also because at long last it got rid of the claim that Dunfermline were simply unable to defeat Dundee United which results up top that point had certainly shown.
Milestones Dundee United (Home)
Last League Victory | 21/04/07 | 1-0 | SPL
Last League Defeat | 10/09/16 | 1-3 | Championship
Best League Victory | 11/08/45 | 7-0 | Div B*
Worst League Defeat | 29/10/11 | 1-4 | SPL
Last Goalless Draw | 01/05/18 | 0-0 | Premiership Play off
First League Meeting | 08/10/21 | 4-1 | Div 2 (old)
*Pre league reconstruction
Dunfermline have not defeated Dundee United at East End Park since 2007 but that was the last in a run of seventeen home games against the Tannadice club without defeat. Many will recall the three missed penalties in the first half of the home game in September 2016 that ended up 3-1 to Ray McKinnon`s United.
The last dozen league games between the two sides have seen United win eight with four games ending up all square.
Last Twelve Matches v Dundee United
Date | H/A | F-A | WDL | Competition
04/05/18 | A | 1-2 | L | Premiership Play off
01/05/18 | H | 0-0 | D | Premiership Play off
24/03/18 | A | 1-1 | D | Championship
13/01/18 | H | 0-0 | D | Championship
02/12/17 | A | 1-2 | L | Championship
30/09/17 | H | 1-3 | L | Championship
11/04/17 | A | 0-1 | L | Championship
28/01/17 | H | 1-1 | D | Championship
12/11/16 | H | 0-1 | L | Irn Bru Cup
08/11/16 | A | 0-1 | L | Championship
10/09/16 | A | 0-2 | L | Championship
31/08/16 | A | 0-3 | L | League Cup
Last time at East End Park
Premiership Play Off
Dunfermline 0 Dundee United 0
Dunfermline as a result of finishing in fourth place played host for the first play off match against third placed Dundee United.
The Fifers were to be denied a first half goal by the crossbar after a surging run by Lee Ashcroft set up Kallum Higginbotham. He laced the ball left for Aird and when McManus connected he was desperately unlucky. It was a first half with 56% home possession but neither side managed a shot on target.
The match was to change in 55 minutes when Ashcroft was shown red for a last man challenge on Scott McDonald. There were protestations during which Higginbotham was shown yellow but nothing would sway referee Bobby Madden’s decision.
After that it was a case of seeing out the remainder of the match in the hope that when the second leg resumed things would be all square and with eleven men things would be back on a level keel.
Dunfermline appealed against the red card shown to Lee Ashcroft and so he played in the second leg.
DUNFERMLINE: Lee Robinson: Ryan Williamson (Nat Wedderburn 88), Callum Morris (c), Lee Ashcroft, Lewis Martin: Kallum Higginbotham (Jason Talbot 64), James Vincent, James Craigen, Fraser Aird: Andy Ryan (Declan McManus 25), Nicky Clark.
SUBS NOT USED: Joe Cardle, Dan Armstrong, Connor Duthie, Cammy Gill (GK)
DUNDEE UNITED: Deniz Dogan Mehmet: Anthony Ralston, Bilel Mohsni, Stewart Murdoch, Willo Flood (c), Scott Fraser, Billy King, Grant Gillespie (Sam Stanton 68), Thomas Mikkelsen (Emil Lyng 75), Scott McDonald.
SUBS NOT USED: Craig Slater, Paul McMullan, Tam Scobbie, William Edjenguele, Harry Lewis GK).
Form Last Six Matches
Queen of the South (H) L 0-1
Alloa Athletic (H) D 2-2
Falkirk (A) W 2-0
Partick Thistle (H) W 1-0
Morton (A) D 1-1
Alloa Athletic (H) D 0-0
Inverness Caley (H) D 1-1
Partick Thistle (A) W 2-1
Ayr United (A) L 0-2
Ross County (H) L 1-5
Falkirk (A) W 2-0
Morton (H) D 1-1
League Position: 7th
League Points: 11
League Record: P9 W3 D2 L4 GF7 GA14
Goal Difference: -5
Last Six League Match Form: LDDWWL
League Position: 4th
League Points: 15
League Record: P10 W4 D3 L3 GF15 GA16
Goal Difference: -1
Last Six League Match Form: DWLLWD
Last time out
DUNFERMLINE (v Queen of the South): Lee Robinson: James Craigen, Lee Ashcroft (c), Danny Devine, Jackson Longridge: Louis Longridge, James Vincent, Malaury Martin (Joe Thomson 85), Aidan Connolly: Andy Ryan (Aidan Keena 79), Faissal El Bakhtaoui (Myles Hippolyte 71).
SUBS NOT USED: Tom Beadling, Ryan Williamson, Robbie Muirhead, Cammy Gill (GK)
DUNDEE UNITED (v Inverness Caley Thistle): Benjamin Siegrist: Callum Booth, Frederic Frans, Rachid Bouhenna, Stewart Murdoch, Paul McMullan, Fraser Fyvie, Billy King (Nicky Clark 75), Sam Stanton, Fraser Aird (Yannick Loemba 90), Pavol Safranko.
SUBS NOT USED: Jamie Robson, Adam Barton, Christoph Rabitsch, Matty Smith, Matej Rakovan (GK).
Referee will be Steven Kirkland.
Other Championship Fixtures
Alloa Athletic v Inverness Caledonian Thistle at Indodrill Stadium
Partick Thistle v Ayr United, Energy Check Stadium at Firhill
Queen of the South v Falkirk at Palmerston Park
Ross County v Morton at the Global Energy Stadium
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