The Dundee United Football Club Historical Archive. Preserving United History Since 2006.
Both recent acquisitions were stripped for this Final with Ray McKinnon taking Jim Bett's place, whilst Jamie McQuilken was on the bench after his transfer 24 hours earlier. In the early stages, Stenhousemuir gave as good as they got and that set the trend for the whole match. In fact they came closest to opening the scoring after 21 minutes when hesitancy in the United defence following a corner from the left gave Muir a sight of goal, but the ball was headed wide. A couple of speculative efforts which didn't trouble McKenzie was all United could muster until seven minutes before the interval when Robbie Winters probing run sent Gary McSwegan clear, but the Muir keeper diverted the ball for a corner. Although United finished the half strongly, it was Stenhousemuir who had the bit between their teeth at the start of the second. Ally Maxwell was at full stretch to keep out a Haddow shot. Owen Coyle lifted a shot over the bar as United struggled to come to grips with their Second Division opponents. The Ochilview men had the ball in the net 17 minutes from the end of normal time, but Ally Maxwell had clearly been fouled. The warriors mounted a concerted attacking spell as the final whistle grew closer, but a glancing header from Grant Johnson and a deflected shot from Jamie McQuilken almost broke the deadlock as the tie came to life in the closing minutes of normal time. But extra-time was required and the one real chance to fall to either side came in the 108th minute when McKenzie made a tremendous reaction save to keep out Gary McSwegan's diving header from Robbie Winters' cross. In truth, a Tangerine victory would have been undeserved and when it came to penalties, they scored from all five with Craig Brewster missing United's first proving crucial, while Christian Dailly, McSwegan, Grant Johnson and Maurice Malpas all followed and all scored on a disappointing afternoon all round.