The Dundee United Football Club Historical Archive. Preserving United History Since 2006.
United made three changes to the side that suffered defeat at the hands of St Mirren with Sean Dillon, Richie Ryan and debutant John Souttar coming in to replace Keith Watson, Mark Millar and the suspended Brian McLean. John Souttar was not only making his debut for Dundee United, he was writing his name in the history books as the club's youngest ever player at 16 years and 100 days old - 43 days younger than Ian Mitchell who previously held the record after making his debut on the 29th of September 1962 in a 5-0 home thrashing of Hibernian.The hosts started brighter and sought to apply early pressure to a United back-line featuring the debutant Souttar and captain Jon Daly. Indeed, they created the first chance of the match as young Ryan Fraser’s corner from the right was met by the head of captain Russell Anderson. However, the header dispatched the ball over the crossbar. Fraser would again create for Aberdeen. Released down the right by Cammy Smith, the young winger got in behind the United defence and his cutback found Scott Vernon 8 yards out. The striker was presented with enough time and space to stroke the ball past Radoslav Cierzniak to send the hosts into the lead on 11 minutes. The Dons almost extended their lead shortly after with Niall McGinn creating space to force a fine save from Cierzniak who tipped the midfielder’s shot onto the bar. The follow up from Fraser was well dealt with by John Souttar effectively puting the Dons winger off his header. Stuart Armstrong was switched into the centre to support Johnny Russell and this would prove key in transforming the game and giving United the opportunity to dominate the remainder of the half. Indeed, United would find an equaliser on 20 minutes following a clash of heads between John Rankin and Russell Anderson giving the Tangerines a free-kick 25 yards out. Barry Douglas dispatched the ball into the 6 yard box but Jon Daly was denied with his strike. However, the ball broke allowing Gavin Gunning, at the back-post, to stoop low to head the ball across the line to make it 1-1. United were buoyed by the equaliser and would begin to exert pressure on Aberdeen who themselves were throwing men forward. A fine Willo Flood chipped pass found Johnny Russell in the box. Unfortunately, the excellent Russell could not find the target from 15 yards out. 34 minutes in would see Dundee United take a deserved lead. Russell down the left sent a dangerous ball into the on-rushing Flood. The midfielder missed the cross, however and bizarrely, Jamie Langfield would allow the ball through his arms and his legs at the front post to put United ahead and to send the visiting 1323 Arabs into raptures.The second half would begin with United almost extending their lead. Joe Shaughnessy mis-hit his clearance allowing the ball to hit the crossbar. However, soon after Aberdeen would level things. A questionable foul given against Jon Daly allowed Niall McGinn to dispatch a free-kick, right footed, past Cierzniak on 53 minutes. The game then developed into something of an end to end affair. A sublime touch from the excellent Stuart Armstrong give him the space to get one on one with Langfield. Agonisingly, his strike was saved by the legs of the Dons keeper. Gavin Gunning then had a strong penalty claim waved away after he was bundled over whilst attempting to head a Douglas corner goal wards. Niall McGinn would have three late chances. However, Cierzniak and his defence would stand firm and as Alan Muir blew for full time, both sets of fans left having witness a thoroughly entertaining first New Firm Derby of 2013.