The Dundee United Football Club Historical Archive. Preserving United History Since 2006.
United struggled all night to match the desire to win of their Division 1 opponents. There was also a deep sense of irony that ex United man Jason Scotland was a thorn in the United defence’s flesh all night, scoring once in the first half and being denied his double by an athletic save from Stillie.Before the match, the area in front of the press box appeared to be a who’s who of former United stars, with Maurice Malpas, Paul Hegarty, Billy Dodds, Archie Knox and Darren Jackson all taking in the game.The match started with Jason Scotland obviously keen to show well against his former employers and SPL opposition in general. He was the first to have an attempt at goal when he shot over the bar. United rallied and good play by Robson and Proctor saw Hunt crossing deep to the far post but Craig Conway could only hit the side netting with his header across goal.St Johnstone were obviously up for the fight and Simon Mensing had an acrobatic shot headed off the line by Greg Cameron as the Saints tried to get an early lead. Noel Hunt was causing a fair bit of anxiety in the home defence and went close with two or three efforts at goal which were on target but troubled Halliwell little in goal.The pairing of Milne and Scotland was working well, their confidence obviously buoyed by a good start to the season. Halliwell was forced again to save from Hunt as United tried to stay in the game and Brewster should have hit the target with a shot that flew high over the bar. United switched Conway and Robson to try and add more width to the game and this seemed to produce a much greater threat to St Johnstone.Jason Scotland was denied an opener by a great save from Stillie, when he tried to chip the keeper after picking up a short back header from Kenneth but he wasn’t to be denied for long. A through ball from Sheerin caught the United defence square and Scotland fired the ball across Stillie and into the corner of the net.Half time saw neither manager make any changes. United made a positive start to the half but almost found themselves further behind. A great blocking tackle by Kalvenes saw the ball break to Milne who was denied by a point blank save by Stillie when he looked certain to score.Sadly, United would soon fall a further goal behind. Garry Kenneth was short with a back header and Steven Milne nipped in to lob Stillie. The ball struck the underside of the bar and went in.Collin Samuel who had been introduced for Conway had a blast at goal that took Halliwell two attempts to hold.With time running out, the game was finally put out of United’s reach by a Mensing header, although the United defence appeared very slow to reorganise for a free kick. The resulting ball was knocked back into the box and the midfielder rose unchallenged to score.