SFL v Dundee

DUNDEE 3 DUNFERMLINE 2 Date: 17/01/10

Fixture: Irn Bru SFL Division One

Attendance: 5201, Kick Off: 3.00pm.

Referee: Iain Brines

After the traumatic week following last Saturday`s Scottish Cup fixture it was a welcome relief to get back to football.  Following an absence from competitive football since 13th December last year, Jim McIntyre named himself on the bench.  The starting eleven was unchanged but Graeme Holmes also returned to the subs list with Alex Burke and Paul Willis dropping out.

Dundee`s Gary MacKenzie was sent off early in the second half in the match against Airdrie United so he was suspended for the visit of Dunfermline. The table topping side that lost to the bottom club in the league brought in Kyle Benedictus, Colin McMenamin and Gary Harkins for this Sunday fixture. Brian Kerr and Pat Clarke found themselves relegated to the bench.

The Dee kicked off attacking the goal in front of the travelling support and it took just 125 seconds before Leigh GRIFFITHS got a tap in at the right goalpost to open the scoring. Richie Hart did the damage with a penetrating run eventually laying the ball off to Eddie Malone who played a one two with Hart to get in behind the right side of the Pars defence.  Malone`s cross gave the former Livy striker an easy start.

Dunfermline`s first chance came from a Willie Gibson diagonal ball in seven minutes that Rab Douglas came out to hold in front of the inrushing Andy Kirk. The equalising goal was not far off however - just three minutes. Steven Bell passed the ball out of defence after Neil McGregor had won possession 25 yards out. Austin McCann ran on to the ball and through Steven McDougall it quickly reached David Graham on the left wing. GRAHAM cut inside and launched a great right footed shot from the edge of the box that rattled into the top right of the Dundee`s net.

The lead lasted only six minutes with Craig Forsyth this time creating the skill to destroy the Pars defence. From a central position he shrugged off challenges to slip the ball right to Griffiths for a square ball that McMENAMIN turned past Fleming to make it 2-1.

A Greg Ross cross was sent narrowly wide by Nick Phinn but then after McGregor was yellow carded for hauling down Harkins, Hart sent a dangerous ball from the free kick on the left and Griffiths was just inches short of heading in number three.

In 28 minutes the Fifers had a chance of their own when Phinn lifted the ball towards Bell in the Dundee penalty box.  His header down went to Kirk but he could only get in a poor connection and Douglas cleaned up.  McDougall and Bell worked up another chance for Gibson five minutes later but it was Phinn who got in the shot but that unfortunately was skied over the top.

The visitors survived a 37th minute corner awarded after Ross was short with a pass back and Fleming had to come and boot away the danger.  His clearance rebounded off McMenamin for a corner!  The final seven minutes of the half were dominated by Jim McIntyre`s side. Benedictus was yellow carded for stopping Graham`s run on the edge of his box and Gibson`s strike from the setpiece was parried by Douglas for Laughlin to head behind.

Gibson sent the corner over from the right but McGregor`s header at goal was headed away by the Dundee defence.  McDougall centred another chance but Douglas took care of that to ensure that his side led at the break.

Dundee 2 Dunfermline 1
The Pars were out early for the restart and they certainly pressed from the kick off winning a corner in just 10 seconds. The home side dealt with Gibson`s delivery and then his return from the defended ball. In 47 minutes the former Killie player also tested Douglas with a shot from 20 yards but then just three minutes later Andy KIRK made it 2-2. 

McDougall floated over a strong ball from the right that Graham returned into the six yard box. Bell appeared to miss the chance but the Pars top goalscorer was on hand to accept the opportunity.  The Pars had their tails up now and the support was in full song as Bell sent an effort from 20 yards narrowly wide left and then McDougall teased the defence before sending his high.

Dunfermline were now winning all the balls in midfield and home fans were growing increasingly concerned.  Rightly so in 62 minutes Douglas was beaten by a Nick Phinn shot from a Gibson corner and the prospects of a home win were sinking. Griffiths took the heat off his defence winning a corner off Andy Dowie but play was soon back up in front of the Pars fans.

McDougall`s cross was headed out and then Gibson was denied a corner.  Kirk was wide left to set up McDougall but Lauchlan made a timely interception.  Dundee began to look ragged and their only response was a Hart shot from distance that found the stand.

Greg Ross was the next to power a shot on target and the Dundee keeper just managed to hold on to it.  The one way traffic continued with Graham scooping a 69th minute attempt over the keeper and the bar.  A McCann cross was headed on by McDougall but just evaded Kirk.

With fifteen minutes remaining Joe Cardle replaced the exhausted Gibson.  Ross made a driving run before crossing in a good ball that Eric Paton coolly chested into Douglas` hands. Kerr clashed with Phinn in 78 and while he received treatment McIntyre and Holmes warmed up in front of the Pars support.

in 81 minutes Griffiths  hammered a great shot from 25 yards that Fleming stopped and then held. But one minute later the striker rocketed another fierce shot that Fleming could only parry and GRIFFITHS followed up to bury the ball in the bottom left. 3-2.

Friendly Dundee boos greeted McIntyre`s replacement of McDougall and they almost had more to boo as both the sub and McGregor got oh so close to a cross into the six yard box.  Dunfermline continued to press adding to the Dundonians nervousness.  Ross almost picked out Macca with a long ball towards the Dundee box and the player / manager got up high above the defenders but not high enough.

As the match entered its 90th minute McCann chipped a free kick over the defence but McIntyre was offside as he tried to connect.  Graham had a 92nd minute shot over the bar, then Macca drove the ball into defenders and it was to end with Dundee opening a 17 point gap over the Fife club.

A cruel result at the end of a cruel week.  The Fifers deserved much more for their second half efforts.

DUNDEE: Rab Douglas; Eric Paton, Jim Lauchlan, Kyle Benedictus,, Eddie Malone; Richie Hart (Brian Kerr 68), Gary Harkins, Maros Kimpl, Craig Forsyth, Colin McMenamin, Leigh Griffiths (Pat Clarke 87)
SUBS: Chris Casement,  Darren Young, Derek Soutar (GK).
SCORER: Griffiths (3, 82), McMenamin (16)

DUNFERMLINE: Greg Fleming; Greg Ross, Neil McGregor, Andy Dowie, Austin McCann (c); Willie Gibson (Joe Cardle 75), Steven Bell, Nick Phinn, David Graham; Steven McDougall (Jim McIntyre 83), Andy Kirk.
SUBS: Graeme Holmes, Calum Woods, Greg Paterson (GK).
SCORER: Graham (10), Kirk (50)
YELLOW CARD: McGregor (20)
WEATHER: Bright 5C

NEXT MATCH: (away) First Division v Partick Thistle
Saturday 23rd January 2009, kick off 3.00pm

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