Dunfermline Athletic

Fixtures : 2017-2018 : Dundee United

Fri, 4th May 2018 Kick Off: 19:45

Dundee United 2 Dunfermline 1

Friday, 4th May 2018

SPFL Premiership Play Off: Declan McManus starts in place of Andy Ryan: Declan McManus (14) 0-1: Scott McDonald (57) 1-1: Sam Stanton (70) 2-1:

Dunfermline travelled to Tannadice for a Friday night fixture that would determine who would face Livingston on Monday night and who would have their season terminated.

Having not defeated Dundee United in the last 14 matches against them it was going to take a change of fortune to progress into the SPFL Premiership Semi Final.

Manager Allan Johnston was forced into one change, Declan McManus came in to replace Andy Ryan who was sidelined with a hamstring injury. As they tried to halt Dunfermline’s run of eleven games unbeaten, United made two changes - Paul McMullan and Sam Stanton started in preference to Thomas Mikkelsen and Grant Gillespie.

The Fifers were supported by a huge travelling support in excess of 2000 and when Callum Morris led the side out it was to a tumultuous welcome. The sides changed ends before United kicked off attacking the goal in front of their own fans.

A kick out from Deniz Mehmet, the United keeper sent McMullan streaking away from Ryan Williamson to get in the first shot of the night after only 20 seconds. Fortunately Morris closed down the former Pars loanee and Lee Robinson’s first touch was from the goal kick.

Fraser Aird took charge of a second minute free kick some 27 yards out in line with the left edge of the United box but overhit his delivery and the hosts had a goal kick. United earned the first corner in six minutes when Stanton robbed possession back off James Vincent but Morris slid in to prevent McMullan’s shot.

There followed not one but two corners for the home side but Lee Ashcroft eventually headed the danger away. United piled on the pressure and Bilel Mohsni fired into the right sidenetting. Then a 12th minute free kick from the left could have been a problem but Anthony Ralston was penalised for pulling.

Back at the other end Aird got to the byeline to cut the ball across the face of goal and when James Craigen drove in a shot it was blocked and rebounded behind for a goal kick. The opening goal came on 14 minutes when Aird got to the byeline on the left again and his ball into the near post was touched home by Declan McMANUS. 0-1


Dundee United 2-1 Dunfermline
Fri, 4th May 2018

United made a good opportunity to strike back two minutes later when Ralston fired a low ball in from the right but McDonald’s touch went wide right. The Pars then had another good chance when Kallum Higginbotham crashed the ball into the six yard box but Mohsni beat Nicky Clark to the ball.

In 24 minutes Craigen fed Higginbotham and on to Williamson. The cross was sent over the bar off Clark whose attempt was closed down by the advancing keeper, Mehmet. McManus turned the next chance over the bar but then a Morris tackle on McDonald gave United a free kick 35 yards out and when that was pumped into the Pars box it was Clark who rose to head the ball away.

Robinson required the attention of physio Kenny Murray after a challenge by McMullan. The keeper resumed holding the back of his neck. Aird sent another dangerous looking cross in 33 minutes and United scrambled the gall away through Ralston and Murdoch. Robson took the pressure off his defence with a cross from the left corner flag but he was far too heavy with the boot and play swung to the other wing.p

McManus had a glorious chance to increase the lead two minutes later when played through one on one with Mehmet, and perhaps suspecting that he had been in an offside position, he allowed the keeper to make a super save. Quite a let off!

A quickly taken free kick five minutes from the break was slipped left to McMullan and he got in a shot that failed to trouble Robinson. Dunfermline went back up the park and Craigen sent over a ball from the left that Ralston and then King hooked away.

In the final minute of the half Stanton surged forward and he played in King who cut back for Robson on the edge of the penalty box but Vincent put in a timely block. There was time for one more excellent chance for the visitors. Aird again created the danger sending in a great cross that Clark six yards out turned on to the crossbar and over.

A good first 45 from the Pars who had 60% possession and by far the better chances. The only disappointing thing was that they had only scored one goal and hopefully those first half misses would not come back to bite.

Half time: Dundee United 0 Dunfermline 1

Csaba László had his United side out fully four minutes before the second half was due to kick off. He took off Paul McMullan and subbed him with the 28 year old Dane Thomas Mikkelsen before Dunfermline resumed the play off.

Early play was competitive and stopped in 51 minutes when Craigen hurt himself in a challenge. Again Kenny Murray’s magic sponge did the job. The travelling support rallied with a choral question about their opposite numbers silence.

On the park Higginbotham unluckily over ran the ball down at the right corner flag but the away team were working really well for each other. It was therefore a cruel blow when United scored a 57th minute equaliser. A King corner from the right was headed into the centre of the goal and McDONALD nipped in and tucked the ball away for 1-1.

The restart was delayed by two minutes as Mehmet, the United keeper was given treatment. He continued but was then subbed by Harry Lewis in 63rd minute. United threatened again but Morris made a great block on a Stanton shot. On the counterattack Clark advanced and then fed Aird to his left but his cross that sought McManus in front of goal was slid away by Robson.

McManus was then denied by a fine save by Lewis, clawing the ball away to his left, and quickly had another opportunity flicking the ball back towards goal but the 20 year old keeper plucked it out of the air. In 68 minutes McManus tried a shot on the angle but again Lewis held.

A United corner saw Murdoch get a free header but that sailed over the bar. Then in 70 minutes United went ahead and it was their Player of the Year, Sam STANTON who single handedly created and finished. He took advantage of a parting of the defence down the left channel to make ground and stick his shot past the advancing Robinson. 2-1

Allan Johnston changed things in 74 minutes introducing Jean-Yves M’Voto in place of Kallum Higginbotham. The big Frenchman was clearly instructed to play up front alongside Clark and McManus.

Robinson held an 80th minute shot from Fraser but next minute Aird lofted in a free kick from the right that was headed clear before it could reach M’Voto at the far side of the box. Ashcroft headed away a Robson delivery but time was running out as United forced an 83rd minute corner on the left. That changed nothing other than consuming minutes.

Joe Cardle came on in 84 minutes in place of James Craigen and Aird’s free kick did find M’Voto but his knock down was defended. McManus twisted his way into the box in 88 minutes but his attempt was blocked out by Flood as was Aird’s follow up.

As the board was raised to decree five added minutes, Cardle stabbed a cross into the danger area but the United defence held out. The added time made no difference to the outcome and it was Tannadice that will host the Premiership semi final play off on Monday night.

The players turned to show their appreciation to the large travelling support, Aird throwing his shirt into the crowd but despite a valiant try it will be Championship football at East End Park next season.

DUNDEE UNITED: Deniz Dogan Mehmet (Harry Lewis 63): Anthony Ralston, Bilel Mohsni, Stewart Murdoch, Jamie Robson: Willo Flood (c), Scott Fraser, Billy King (Mark Durnan 90), Sam Stanton, Paul McMullan (Thomas Mikkelsen HT), Scott McDonald.
SUBS NOT USED: Grant Gillespie, Craig Slater, William Edjenguele, Matthew Smith.
SCORERS: McDonald (57), Stanton (70)

DUNFERMLINE: Lee Robinson: Ryan Williamson ( 88), Callum Morris (c), Lee Ashcroft, Lewis Martin: Kallum Higginbotham (Jean-Yves M’Voto 74), James Vincent, James Craigen (Joe Cardle 84), Fraser Aird: Declan McManus, Nicky Clark.
SUBS NOT USED: Nat Wedderburn, Jason Talbot, Dan Armstrong, Michael Paton, Cammy Gill (GK)
SCORERS: McManus (14)

REFEREE: William Collum
WEATHER: Overcast 14C
ATTENDANCE 7994

NEXT MATCH: TBC

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  • Dundee United 2-1 Dunfermline
    Fri, 4th May 2018

  • Allan Johnston post Dundee United
    Fri, 4th May 2018

  • Callum Morris post Dundee United
    Fri, 4th May 2018

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Preview Dundee United

Friday, 4th May 2018

SPFL Premiership Play Off: Friday 4th May 2018, kick off 7.45pm at Tannadice

After a goalless first leg in the Premiership Play Off against Csaba László`s Dundee United, the return is on Friday night.

It is third v fourth for the honour of taking on second place Livingston and this is the sixth meeting between the sides this season and so far Dunfermline have yet to come out on top. Following United wins in September and December the results improved with draws in January and March. Added confidence comes with the widely held opinion that the Fifers should have won at a Tannadice the last time the teams clashed.

Last season the sides also met six times - in Betfred and Irn Bru Cups and in four league matches - resulting in five United wins and one draw. That was only part of a poor record against the Tangerines, now no wins in 14 meetings, but it has not always been so one sided. In the 137 previous league meetings Dunfermline have 48 wins and United 51 with 38 match drawn.

Milestones Dundee United (Away)
Last League Victory:
20/08/11: 1-0: SPL
Last League Defeat:
02/12/17: 1-2: Championship
Best League Victories:
29/01/66: 4-0: Div 1*
22/08/62: 4-0: Div 1*
28/02/48: 4-0: Div B*
Worst League Defeat
29/04/61: 0-5: Div 1*
*Pre league reconstruction


Dunfermline 0-0 Dundee United
Tue, 1st May 2018

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
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
22/09/15 | A | 1-3 | L | League Cup

Last time at Tannadice
Saturday 24th March 2018
Dundee United 1 Dunfermline 1


After a first half without a goal, Nicky CLARK was to score in 52nd minute after Ryan Williamson and Kallum Higginbotham made ground down the right. The goal from the cross was a tap in from close in. 0-1

The lead was only to last three minutes as a consequence of a mistake by James Craigen. The ball was only eight yards out and Lee Robinson had everything covered until the Pars man cleared the ball off Scott McDONALD and past the keeper. 1-1

There was a good opportunity for a late Dunfermline winner. Martin swung the ball over to the far post and Clark clipped the ball back but McManus could not get a connection.

DUNDEE UNITED: Harry Lewis: Bilel Mohsni, Stewart Murdoch, Tam Scobbie (Mark Durnan HT): Anthony Ralston, Willo Flood, Scott Fraser (Craig Slater 55), Sam Stanton, Jamie Robson: Matty Smith (Paul McMullan 78), Scott McDonald.
SUBS NOT USED: Thomas Mikkelsen, Billy King, Grant Gillespie, Deniz Dogan Mehmet (GK).

DUNFERMLINE: Lee Robinson: Ryan Williamson, Callum Morris (c), Lee Ashcroft, Lewis Martin: Kallum Higginbotham, James Vincent, Tom Beadling, James Craigen (Nat Wedderburn 73): Declan McManus, Nicky Clark.
SUBS NOT USED: Fraser Aird, Dan Armstrong, Andy Ryan, Jean-Yves M`Voto, Jason Talbot, Cammy Gill (GK)

Form last six matches

Dunfermline are unbeaten in their last eleven matches. Dundee United won 12 of their 18 home league matches this season and only lost three to Morton, Inverness and Queen of the South.

DUNFERMLINE
Dundee United (H) D 0-0
Dumbarton (H) W 4-0
Inverness Caley Thistle (A) D 2-2
Brechin City (H) W 4-0
Falkirk (A) W 2-1
Livingston (H) W 1-0

DUNDEE UNITED
Dunfermline Athletic (A) D 0-0
Livingston (H) W 2-0
Queen of the South (A) L 0-3
Brechin City (A) W 5-0
Falkirk (H) W 1-0
St Mirren (H) W 1-0


DUNFERMLINE
League Position: 4th
League Points: 59
League Record: P36 W16 D11 L9 GF60 GA35
Goal Difference: +25
Last Six League Match Form: LWWWLW

DUNDEE UNITED
League Position: 3rd
League Points: 61
League Record: P36 W18 D7 L11 GF52 GA42
Goal Difference: +10
Last Six League Match Form: WLLLLL

Line Ups in first 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).



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