The Dundee United Football Club Historical Archive. Preserving United History Since 2006.
After no goals and no points from our two home meetings with our near neighbours last season, this was a very welcome way in which to open the new campaign. Over and above that, the manner in which the side brushed off the disappointment of being pegged back to go on and win was highly encouraging, and a quality not often in evidence last term. There were close to 12,000 fans packed in for a unique start to the league campaign with neighbours Dundee, our first visitors. United set up in a 4-4-2 formation with Dodds and Thompson leading the line.Initially play was less frenetic than you would normally expect in a derby however the game burst into life after fourteen minutes. Hugh Davidson, making his debut, flighted over a corner which landed at the feet of Magnus Sköldmark who was afforded just too much time and space and he drilled a shot off the underside of the bar and over the line into the roof of the net. At that stage United dominated proceedings, some 25 minutes elapsing before Dundee created even a half chance. The tranquillity of an otherwise very fairly contested derby came to an end after 28 minutes when Grady was shown the only yellow card of the afternoon after an incident involving skipper Jason de Vos. Gradually Dundee forced their way into the game with Grady twice, and Tweed, both going close. The visitors continued to come forward with menace after the break, Rae sending a dipping volley inches over within a minute of the restart. It was no surprise when Dundee equalised. Willie Miller's wayward shot was cutely controlled by Willie Falconer who spun to curl in the equaliser from 14 yards. Soon, however, we were back in control and the introduction of new Portuguese striker Joaquim Ferraz proved to be a master-stroke. The giant striker almost scored with his first kick, Douglas happy to parry his effort. From the ensuing corner a Magnus Skoldmark header was cleared off the line. The action continued to be very much centred around Douglas in the Dundee goal as he kept out efforts from Billy Dodds and Hugh Davidson before putting off a magnificent one-handed save from a Jason de Vos header. The near siege like conditions were maintained with Joaquim Ferraz hitting the outside of a post with a header. But Douglas was finally beaten five minutes from the end when Joaquim Ferraz rose above Maddison to powerfully direct a header on target which Douglas blocked, but couldn't prevent crossing the line, That goal meant the new season was off to the best possible of starts.