Scottish Cup: HIBERNIAN 4 DUNFERMLINE 1: 29/01/00

Although Owen Coyle was available for this Tennents Scottish Cup Third Round match he didn’t figure in the starting line up. Instead David Graham was handed the number 9 jersey to get only his second start of the season. Jamie Dolan returned to midfield and Ian Ferguson resumed his sweeper role.

This was a match in which Dunfermline started badly and got worse. In the opening exchanges Chris McGroarty and Kris Mampaey both looked less than alert and when Derek Collins rounded Jamie Dolan and Stewart Petrie to send over a cross from the right corner flag the defence was static as Kenny Miller darted in to open the scoring. To lose a goal in sixty five seconds was a mighty blow but the Pars did try to get back in the tie.

In the 11th minute Scott Thomson cut across the middle of the park and passed to Steve Hampshire in open space on the edge of the box. He failed to find the net but it didn’t matter because he was offside.

Twelve minutes later a lofty Petrie boot up the park set up a race between Graham and Republic of Ireland internationalist, Nick Colgan but the keeper denied Graham the breakaway goal.

Another Petrie through ball in the 32nd minute did however catch the defence out. The Hibs defence froze as Hughes headed down to Mathias Jack but his half hearted pass back was latched on to by David GRAHAM who took his chance well, drawing the keeper and smacking the ball into an empty net.

This cause Hibs to up the pace and there was a concerted assault on the Pars defences. Tom Smith might have done better when he was clear wide on the left and was not flagged for offside. Then Ian Ferguson was penalised for a high boot when Paatelainen dipped his head into a challenge on the edge of the penalty box. The indirect free kick was shakily defended with no one taking the Faither French role of challenging the shooter. Sauzee’s shot was saved by Mampaey.

That survived Hibs next threatened from the left where Trinidad’s Russell Latapy twisted and turned into the area leaving Jason Dair in his slipstream and sent over a cross which found Grant Brebner between Dolan and Tod. The Hibs number 34 flicked into the net with the back of his heel.

The second half brought little danger from the Pars. A weak Jamie Dolan shot from far out was all they could muster before the home side increased their lead in the 65th minute. This goal was a disaster for Brian Reid as he failed to clear a ball that hung over his head as he retreated. Kenny Miller got the better of the defender, controlled the ball on the right of the penalty box, the ball rebounded off the back of Reid before Miller shot. Paatelainen stabbed at the ball as it went passed him and Kris Mampaey did well to save but his parry landed for newly introduced sub, Ian Murray to score.

Owen Coyle was brought on for Brian Reid and the formation looked a complete shambles as Scott Thomson went to centre back and Ian Ferguson was pushed forward. Inevitably in the circumstances Hibs found it easy to pass the ball about, relaxed in the comfort of the two goal cushion.

The fourth goal two minutes from full time was a well worked move up the right. From Collins, Kenny Miller fed the ball back to Latapy who flighted a gem of a ball into Collins path and the right back put the ball away well.

To the thoroughly frozen Pars fans that were still there at the end the final whistle was a relief. The tie was never going to be easy for the First Division side but the reluctance of the management to play Ian Ferguson in midfield reduced the chances of even a draw to remote. Even when Ferguson was pushed forward goodness knows why John Potter was not put on in the centre of defence. The decision to start with Graham instead of Coyle was endorsed by the youngsters goal but in all honesty Dunfermline did not have players of the class of Collins, Latapy, Brebner and Sauzee.

One has to fear Dunfermline’s prospects as the management do not seem to call the formation and tactics even acknowledging that we don’t have the players to play in the role demanded of them.

DUNFERMLINE: (5-3-2) Mampaey; Dair, Tod, Ferguson, Reid (Coyle 70),), McGroarty; Thomson, Dolan (Moss 79), Petrie; Graham, Hampshire,
Scorers: Graham (32)
Sub not used: Potter
Hibernian: Colgan, Collins, Hughes, Jack, Smith, Brebner (Hartley 68), Sauzee, Latapy, Lovell (Murray 65), Miller, Paatelainen (Lehmann 68).
Miller 1, Brebner 37, Murray 65, Collins 88
No yellow cards for Dunfermline
Hibs: Paatelainen (44)
Referee S Dougall (Burnbank
Attendance 10,863
Strip: Home - Black & White
Weather: extremely cold with a strong swirling wind

Next match League (away) v Clydebank Saturday 5th February 2000

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