The Dundee United Football Club Historical Archive. Preserving United History Since 2006.
Skipper Jon Daly failed to make it due to injury, meaning new signing Rory Boulding stepped into the lone striker role just 48 hours after he joined the Club. He proved to be one of three debutants in the match, with Swedish defender Marcus Tornstrand and young striker Robert Thomson both later coming off the bench. Manager Jackie McNamara’s only other change was to bring in Richie Ryan into the heart of the midfield in place of Michael Gardyne who dropped down to the bench. St Mirren manager Danny Lennon rung the changes after his decision to rest several first team players for the midweek trip to Dens backfired when Dundee ran out 2-1 winners.It was something of an edgy start, with St Mirren having a lot of possession but United looking fairly lively on the counter attack, while the home side picked up two yellow cards in the opening 10 minutes after Conor Newton and Steven Thompson both dished out meaty challenges on Barry Douglas and Gary Mackay-Steven. The first real attempt at goal came after nearly 20 minutes, when Teale swung in a fine cross from the right and Thompson headed over. It wouldn’t have counted anyway, however, as the ex-United man was judged to have fouled McLean. The winger, who was the home side’s most dangerous player throughout, was at it again a minute later, as he swung in a terrific driven cross that Thompson just failed to get his head to as it flashed across the face of goal. Despite some tidy touches, neither side was managing to create much on a soggy afternoon, and Paul McGowan resorted to trying something special as he cracked a driven effort just wide of Radoslaw Cierzniak’s right post. Brian McLean had to come to the rescue with a brave last-ditch block on Goncalves after Richie Ryan gave the ball away on the edge of the United box as the home side tried to up the tempo in the approach to the break. Paul McGowan then had the first shot on target as he curled in an effort that Cierzniak held comfortably. With a minute to play until the break United had their first attempt on goal as Mackay-Steven darted up the right wing then played it into Boulding, who turned and drove in an effort that Samson held. Teale, the home side’s main threat, then had an effort saved.After a dour first half, both teams threatened in the opening minute of the second half, as first Graham Carey swung in a corner that nobody managed to get on the end of, then Stuart Armstrong powered in an effort that fizzed just over the bar. Keith Watson was becoming more of a threat going forward on the right and first delivered a dangerous ball that nobody could get on the end of, then expertly set up Boulding, who fired wide. St Mirren then threatened as Teale delivered yet another inviting cross that Goncalves couldn’t divert towards goal, then Jon Robertson, on for Conor Newton at half time, shot over from outside the box. United were forced into a change early in the second half as Brian McLean, who had been dominant in the heart of United’s defence, went off injured, and centre-half Marcus Tonstrand came on for a debut. The home side continued to look a threat and Paul McGowan ran at United’s defence before teeing up Goncalves, who side-footed an effort that Samson held. Mackay-Steven then broke away on the counter-attack, only for McAusland to make a superb last-ditch challenge, with the ball bouncing off the United winger’s leg for a goal kick. Jackie McNamara handed another debut midway through the second half, as towering 19-year-old Robert Thomson replaced Boulding, while Gardyne came on for Ryan. The former Ross County wide man was in the thick of the action immediately, curling a fine effort just wide of the post from the edge of the box. Graham Carey, who recently scored a goal that won him comparisons with Gareth Bale, fired in a free-kick that Cierzniak had to be alert to save. Dougie Imrie, just on the field, then battered an effort from the left just wide after a fine cross from Teale. As the game entered the last 10 minutes, United started to look dangerous, with Watson and Douglas both pinging in dangerous crosses, then Samson pulling out a top drawer save to deny Gardyne from close range after a Douglas corner. United could sense they had a chance to win it, and Mackay-Steven set up Watson on the right, who crossed well for Armstong, who headed over from close range. With just two minutes to go, referee John Boulton pulled out a surprise red card after John Rankin went flying into a challenge 22 yards out. Graham Carey sent the resultant free kick just over the bar. St Mirren then played some tidy football on the edge of the box before Carey drove in an effort straight at Cierziak.