Greenock Morton 1 - 2 Dundee Utd

League - Premiership Playoff QF 1st Leg
Tuesday, May 9th, 2017, 7:45 PM at Cappielow
Attendance: 3,306
Referee: Willie Collum
Greenock Morton Dundee Utd

Thomas O'Ware (7) Simon Murray (51)
Blair Spittal (65)

Team Managers
Jim Duffy Ray McKinnon

Starting Eleven
Derek Gaston
Ricki Lamie
Thomas O'Ware
Ross Forbes
Mark Russell
Jamie McDonagh
Jamie Lindsay
Michael Tidser
Andy Murdoch
Gary Oliver
Lawrence Shankland
Cammy Bell
Stewart Murdoch
Mark Durnan
William Edjenguélé
Jamie Robson
Blair Spittal
Wato Kuaté
Tony Andreu
Willo Flood
Thomas Mikkelsen
Simon Murray

James McGowan
Scott Tiffoney
Lewis Strapp
Kudus Oyenuga
Michael Doyle
Jon Scullion
Luis Zwick
Coll Donaldson
Seán Dillon
Charlie Telfer
Scott Allardice
Ali Coote
Alex Nicholls

Michael Doyle for Ross Forbes (76)
Kudus Oyenuga for Lawrence Shankland (81)
Scott Tiffoney for Michael Tidser (90)
Scott Allardice for Thomas Mikkelsen (85)
Ali Coote for Simon Murray (90)

Thomas O'Ware (80) Wato Kuaté (58)
Simon Murray (70)

Red Cards
None. None.
Appearances & Goals To Date
Cammy Bell (GK) 44 apps -
Stewart Murdoch 28 apps1 goal
Mark Durnan 73 apps8 goals
William Edjenguélé 36 apps2 goals
Jamie Robson 28 apps1 goal
Blair Spittal 103 apps12 goals
Wato Kuaté 5 apps -
Tony Andreu 37 apps19 goals
Willo Flood 193 apps7 goals
Thomas Mikkelsen 21 apps8 goals
Simon Murray 70 apps22 goals
Ali Coote (sub) 19 apps -
Scott Allardice (sub) 6 apps -

Starting Lineup
Youngest Player:Jamie Robson (19 years 146 days)
Oldest Player:Willo Flood (32 years 37 days)
Average Player Age:26 years 73 days
Domestic Players:6 (54.55 % of starting eleven)

Matchday Squad
Youngest Player:Ali Coote (18 years 337 days)
Oldest Player:Seán Dillon (33 years 292 days)
Average Player Age:25 years 130 days
Domestic Players:10 (55.56 % of matchday squad)

First Team Debuts


Ray McKinnon’s Dundee United travelled to the west coast to face Jim Duffy’s Greenock Morton for the second time in four days. Having only managed a 1-1 draw against the ‘Ton in the league on Saturday, the Terrors had finished third in the Scottish Championship and now had to face fourth placed Morton in the Quarter Final of the Premiership Play-off. McKinnon made two changes to his line-up with both Simon Murray and William Edjenguélé returning from suspension with Ali Coote and Coll Donaldson dropping to the bench. Alternatively, Jim Duffy made five changes to his starting eleven with Gaston, Lindsay, Tidser, Oliver and Shankland all coming in for Halliwell, Doyle, Strapp, Oyenuga and Scullion.

With the low evening sun setting on Cappielow Park, Dundee United and Morton kicked off this season’s Championship Play off Quarter Final 1st leg. United started positively, winning a corner in first 30 seconds, which resulted in a Mikkelsen shot flying over the bar. However, against the early run of play, after 7 minutes, Morton took the lead. A long throw in from the right all too easily beat the United defence and Thomas O’Ware headed powerfully past Bell. Mikkelsen again got a shot off as he swivelled from a tight angle but Gaston saved easily. Morton were using the low sun to their advantage as Tidser cracked a 30 yard shot off the bar with Bell beaten. Morton continued to press and almost scored a second on 23 minutes as Oliver nipped in at Bell’s front post, but the United keeper had it covered. At this stage the early match promise seemed a long time ago! On 30 mins Morton had a penalty claim waved away by Collum as Forbes went down under an Edjenguele challenge. United continued to struggle facing the low sun, with Durnan saving Edjenguele blushes with a timely interception after being dispossessed by Shankland. The best that can be said at half time was that United were still in the game.

United started the half with renewed vigour and on 50 minutes were level in spectacular fashion. Simon Murray collected the ball on the left side of the Morton penalty area, swivelled and fired a truly fantastic drive into the top corner. On 56 minutes, the move of the match almost put United in front. Wonderful interchanges with Flood and Andreu led to a rare Willo Flood shot from 10 yards, bringing out a good save from Gaston. United were now looking more dangerous, and following a quick counter attack, a Robson cross was narrowly missed by Murray as he attempted a back flick. It didn’t take long, however, before United were in front and once again it was in spectacular fashion! As United enjoyed a period of sustained pressure, the ball fell to Blair Spittal. From fully 25 yards, he drove low into the bottom left corner, sending United supporters into raptures. As United continued to dominate, Morton were lucky to avoid a red card. Lamie was dispossessed by Mikkelsen and as the striker headed for goal, he was cynically pulled back. Referee Collum decided on yellow, deeming another Morton defender in the area. United continued to be the more composed as the game reached its final stages and Simon Murray, in the mood for the spectacular, volleyed just over, then Kaute drove through on goal, firing just wide. The United support were in full voice as the referee blew for full time as United saw out injury time to record a well-deserved first leg, 2:1 win.

Match report written by Stuart Norris

Photography by DUFC Official

Pld W D L F A +/- Pts
1. Hibernian 36 19 14 3 59 25 34 71
2. Falkirk 36 16 12 8 58 40 18 60
3. UNITED 36 15 12 9 50 42 8 57
4. Morton 36 13 13 10 44 41 3 52
5. Dunfermline 36 12 12 12 46 43 3 48
6. Queen of the South 36 11 10 15 46 52 -6 43
7. St Mirren 36 9 12 15 52 56 -4 39
8. Dumbarton 36 9 12 15 46 56 -10 39
9. Raith Rovers 36 10 9 17 35 52 -17 39
10. Ayr United 36 7 12 17 33 62 -29 33
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