The Dundee United Football Club Historical Archive. Preserving United History Since 2006.
United's disappointing cup exit at Pittodrie in midweek brought about changes in the side with both Dennis Gillespie and Jacky Copland earning recalls for the meeting with Killie. However, it was the Rugby Park visitors who drew first blood after just nine minutes when a bad defensive error allowed Gilmour to cross for Jim McCulloch to head home. United pressed hard for the equaliser but were always conscious of Killie's danger on the break and it was not until the stroke of half-time that the leveller came. Jim Henry was the man who mattered, hammering a headed clearance behind McLaughlin. Alan Gordon sent United into a deserved lead nine minutes after the interval - but the home men were stunned in 68 minutes when Kilmarnock raced away from their defensive shell to square things once again through winger Jim Cook . But the visitors' joy lasted only until six minutes from the end when Alan Gordon netted his second and the winner with a glorious header from all of 12 yards.
After the bitter disappointment of our cup dismissal at Pittodrie in mid-week, we must now make a real effort to climb the League table. In recent weeks our away record has been most satisfactory and if we can match up at home there's no doubt we would get into a challenging position for an extra tournament next season. The two defeats from St. Johnstone and Morton were body blows to us but with only around five points separating us from teams in the upper places, we can still catch up, especially with two games in hand. Today we face a side who usually give us a hard game at Tannadice. The Rugby Park men were more than a trifle fortunate to take full points in the game earlier in the season, and we must aim to make no mistakes this time. Killie have had a mixed season and in the League programme have really struggled to get a telling blend. Last week they hit the headlines by beating Morton in the cup and on the strength of that performance they will be in a confident mood today. Looking back on our two cup games with Aberdeen, it must be said, here and now, the replay was lost due to a poor display by the front runners. In spite of being encouraged by a steady rearguard, who looked capable of holding the home men within reason, our strikers never caused Bobby Clark any trouble whatsoever. And this failure is firmly underlined by the fact we were backed by a strong wind in the second half. After a sound first half display, which saw Hamish McAlpine and Walter Smith reach the heights, it was expected the forwards would step up their efforts. And I consider a goal would have changed the whole pattern of the half for us. But the Dons defence was never stretched and in consequence they grabbed the chance to push their own attack on and the fact a full back opened the scoring is a sad reflection. However, the one magnificent feature of the game was the incredible attendance despite the atrocious weather. Over the two games around 52,000 turned out and with the weather so bad at both games this is really a marvellous tribute to Aberdeen.