The Dundee United Football Club Historical Archive. Preserving United History Since 2006.
United and Clydebank had met just once on League Cup business and that was a little under five years prior to this one when the competition was known as the Bell's Cup. At the time the clubs met United were holders of the cup, but already had to come from behind against First Division Motherwell in the previous round, so caution was obviously United's approach to a tricky first leg which took place at Kilbowie on Wednesday, 8th October, 1980. Any apprehensions that Tannadice fans had about this tie were well founded too, because Clydebank raced into a 2-0 lead after a mere 12 minutes. The first was thanks to 17 year old Tommy McGorm. A corner on the left, Houston's header was parried by Hamish McAlpine but the teenager was on hand to sweep home a shock opener. Only another six minutes later Clydebank sensationally went further ahead. Gerry McCabe chipped the ball forward to Blair Millar. The centre was all on his own and coolly scored as the Tannadice defence appealed, in vain, for an offside decision. Greatly encouraged by these early successes, Clydebank had United in grave trouble, but gradually the visitors clawed their way back into the game as Gallacher was increasingly forced into action, but the opening half ended with young McGorm almost counting again with an angled drive. The resumptiom saw United in obviously determined mood. The introduction of Davie Dodds for lain Phillip in the 57th minute brought speedy reward. Willie Pettigrew way out on the right, swung over a cross and Eamonn Bannon beat Gallacher in the air to nod in a life-saving goal. Youngster McGorm continued to threaten with a couple of chances, but the first leg ended with United going close to levelling the tie.