The Dundee United Football Club Historical Archive. Preserving United History Since 2006.
Manager Jim McLean stuck with the same starting eleven that eased past Cowdenbeath in the previous round, with the experienced Frank Kopel replacing Colin Campbell on the bench.United almost snatched the lead after two minutes when the home defence allowed Eamonn Bannon in for a free header which hit the top of the bar. The First Division side then were unlucky not to score, when Steve McLelland found himself with just Hamish McAlpine to beat, but his volley came off the keepers shoulder and over. United took the lead in the 9th minute, when Hugh Sproat blocked a Joe Ward shot from 18 yards, and Derek Addison nipped in to score from eight yards. Ralph Milne was next to threaten, but his header from a Kirkwood chip fell weakly into Sproats hands. After 38 minutes of United pressure, Motherwell came storming back just before the interval. John McKeever got to the ball before both McAlpine and Narey to equalise from six yards, and two minutes later Ian Clinging put Motherwell in front when he headed home after an Albert Kidd long throw.United started the second half strongly, with chances for Bannon and Ward, but the home side had gained confidence from the two goals just before the interval, and in the 71st minute a McKeever effort scraped the post. Both teams made substitutions and the match became untidy before the end. The home side had made United very uncomfortable, but fortunately they failed to give themselves more of a cushion to take to Tannadice for the 2nd leg.