The Dundee United Football Club Historical Archive. Preserving United History Since 2006.
With injuries to the unfortunate Lee Mair and Jim McIntyre, there was a recall to the starting line-up for Jason Scotland and Grant Brebner. United manager Ian McCall resisted the temptation of starting with either of his youngsters, Kenneth and Cameron, instead moving the experienced Stuart Duff back into the defence. The youngsters were on the bench together with Billy Dodds, Collin Samuel and Nick Colgan. Aberdeen, cheered on by a huge travelling support, lined up in their familiar formation.The game started at a very fast pace and after two minutes Aberdeen won the first corner of the afternoon. The resulting kick found the head of the towering Richie Byrne who headed wide off the post. On the 20 minute mark United did take the lead. Russell Anderson was booked for a foul on Robson, and from the free kick taken by Robson himself, Stevie Crawford had his volley cleared off the line by Byrne. The ball landed at the feet of Alan Archibald who slotted the ball home. On the half hour mark United deservedly doubled their lead. A Wilson cross was headed against the bar by Barry Robson. The ball fell at the feet of James Grady who could not fail to score. Three minutes later the visitors handed themselves a lifeline. A Jamie Winter cross to the back post was blasted past Bullock by Ritchie Byrne to send the travelling fans wild. It was United though who were the far superior side and after 42 minutes they again gave themselves a two goal cushion. Jason Scotland played a perfect through ball to Stevie Crawford who raced in on goal and finished low past the helpless Esson. Amazingly, despite holding a 3-1 advantage, it was United who came out at the start of the second half the more eager of the two sides. After two minutes of the restart they put the game beyond their visitors. Stevie Crawford cut in from the right hand side and played the ball to Grady who teed himself up and smashed home a volley from the edge of the 18-yard box. The goal is a definite candidate for goal of the season. Tony Bullock made his first mistake of the day but his reliable defence came to his rescue and cleared to safety. Collin Samuel was looking very impressive on his return to the side and on two more occasions went close. Firstly a good run down the right hand side was charged down before he brilliantly beat the offside trap only to see his shot saved by Esson. At the full time whistle it was very obvious to see what the result meant to the home players and their supporters.