Dundee Utd 1 - 0 Airdrieonians

League - Premier Division
Saturday, December 13th, 1980, 3:00 PM at Tannadice Park
Attendance: 4,780
Referee: Bill Anderson (East Kilbride)
Mascot: Kevin Flood
Dundee Utd  Airdrieonians

Goalscorers
Davie Dodds (68)
None.

Team Managers
Jim McLean
Bobby Watson

Starting Eleven
Hamish McAlpine
Paul Hegarty
Frank Kopel
Dave Narey
Iain Phillip
John Holt
Eamonn Bannon
Paul Sturrock
Graeme Payne
Willie Pettigrew
Davie Dodds
John Martin
Harry Cairney
Jim Rodger
Tommy Walker
Jim March
George Anderson
Brian McKeown
Sandy Clark
Bobby Russell
Ian Gordon
Pat McCluskey

Substitutes
Derek Addison
Ralph Milne
Dave Thompson
Willie McCulloch

Substitutions
None. None.

Bookings
None. None.

Red Cards
None. None.
Appearances & Goals To Date
Hamish McAlpine (GK) 441 apps3 goals
Iain Phillip 74 apps1 goal
John Holt 125 apps11 goals
Paul Hegarty 270 apps46 goals
Frank Kopel 365 apps13 goals
Dave Narey 314 apps21 goals
Eamonn Bannon 60 apps10 goals
Davie Dodds 97 apps30 goals
Paul Sturrock 251 apps70 goals
Graeme Payne 259 apps17 goals
Willie Pettigrew 69 apps28 goals

Starting Lineup
Youngest Player:Davie Dodds (22 years 87 days)
Oldest Player:Hamish McAlpine (32 years 335 days)
Average Player Age:26 years 50 days
Domestic Players:11 (100.00 % of starting eleven)

Matchday Squad
Youngest Player:Ralph Milne (19 years 219 days)
Oldest Player:Hamish McAlpine (32 years 335 days)
Average Player Age:25 years 213 days
Domestic Players:13 (100.00 % of matchday squad)

First Team Debuts

Milestones
Davie Dodds reached 30 goals for the Club.

United made a great start to the match and Pettigrew had the ball in the net after five minutes, but the goal was chalked off for a foul on the 'keeper. United were looking slick and confident in the early exchanges, Breaking from deep positions with Sturrock and Payne posing problems for the Airdrie defence. The referee awarded a penalty when McCluskey punched a goal bound Dodds header off the line in 17 minutes. Bannon continued United's woeful penalty record with a shot high, wide and far from handsome. A Bannon run in 23 minutes provided Dodds with a clear header, but the ball broke to Payne and the chance was lost. Airdrie claimed a penalty of their own but the ref was not interested. A piece of Sturrock magic almost broke the deadlock a couple of minutes before the whistle. His flying turn and shot from Dodds' header is went inches wide of target.

Bannon was having a nightmare game and he wasted two good opportunities to cross before missing a clear-cut chance set up by Sturrock. A foul on Sturrock an the edge of the box gave Graeme Payne a chance with the free kick. Martin positioned himself perfectly to save the curling shot. Sturrock, Payne and Hegarty all came close before United finally opened the scoring. Bannon sent in a perfect cross and Davie Dodds repeated his League Cup final header in 68 minutes.

This afternoon I take the greatest of delight in welcoming you all back to Tannadice for the Premier League clash against Airdrie. Clearly my deepest feelings are with you, the United fans, who followed us across the road to Dens Park for last Saturday's memorable Bell's League Cup occasion against city neighbours Dundee. It was an afternoon during which I took intense pleasure from not only retaining the trophy, but also from the impeccable behavior of you all and the professional display of our side!

As has become almost a joke at Tannadice, I am looked upon as probably the hardest person to please in the game. Well let me tell you, I could not have been more pleased with what occurred last weekend. The winning of the cup completed for me a competition run this season which quite frankly was deserving of the end product that piece of silverare.

For in my view we played some marvelous football on our way to the trophy, with only a couple of indifferent performances to mar the series. And let's face it, two bad displays out of eleven games at Premier League level would satisfy any boss at the top sphere of the game in Scotland. So, I am seeking a repeat of the determination, which grabbed the prize last week in every league game ahead. Because with that characteristic in our make-up, allied to the skills in the side, there can only be one direction in which Dundee United should move upwards!

Finally, a word on Joe Ward, whose goals at vital stages in the League Cup run paved the way for last weekend's celebrations. He clearly has the talents if not the instinctive determination to succeed and my message to him is, ally the two quickly for the benefit of both yourself and the club.

Pld W D L F A +/- Pts
1. Aberdeen 17 12 4 1 36 11 25 28
2. Celtic 18 12 2 4 38 20 18 26
3. Rangers 17 8 7 2 33 13 20 23
4. St Mirren 18 7 4 7 26 22 4 18
5. UNITED 17 6 6 5 20 21 -1 18
6. Partick Thistle 18 6 4 8 15 22 -7 16
7. Morton 18 5 6 7 22 30 -8 16
8. Airdrie 18 4 7 7 17 25 -8 15
9. Hearts 17 3 4 10 15 27 -12 10
10. Kilmarnock 18 1 4 13 11 42 -31 6
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