Dundee 2
Dunfermline Athletic 3
League (Premier League)

2 - 3

League (Premier League)
Tuesday, November 12th, 2002
Dens Park
Attendance: 5,475
7:45 PM Kick-off

Barry Nicholson (o.g.) (8)
Steve Lovell (19)
Craig Brewster (25)
Stevie Crawford (75)
Jason Dair (84)

Team Managers
Jim Duffy
Jimmy Calderwood

Starting Eleven
12. Julian Speroni
16. Jonay Hernández
23. Tom Hutchinson
3. David Mackay
2. Barry Smith
6. Lee Wilkie
26. Garry Brady
8. Gavin Rae
7. Fabian Caballero
25. Steve Lovell
17. Nacho Novo
Marco Ruitenbeek .1
Lee Bullen .21
Scott Wilson .25
Andrius Skerla .5
Jason Dair .3
Scott Thomson .6
Barry Nicholson .7
Gary Mason .8
Gary Dempsey .18
Stevie Crawford .9
Craig Brewster .10

1. Jamie Langfield
19. Lee Mair
10. Giorgi Nemsadze
21. Steven Robb
9. Juan Sara
Derek Stillie .20
Scott Walker .15
Sean Kilgannon .17
André Karnebeek .4
Steven Hampshire .12

Lee Mair for Nacho Novo (79)
Juan Sara for Steve Lovell (83)
Sean Kilgannon for Gary Dempsey (63)
Scott Walker for Craig Brewster (87)

Lee Wilkie (40)
Lee Wilkie (75)
Barry Smith (75)
Steve Lovell (82)
Lee Bullen (50)

Red Cards
Lee Wilkie (75)
Match Officials

Alan (Referee)
Jim McBride & James Bee (Assistants)
Andrew Hunter (Fourth Official)

Match Report

Thomson inspired his team, Brewster really unsettled the opposition and Crawford as usual had a role in every goal.

Jim Duffy wasn't pulling many punches after Dunfermline had come from two down to take all three points, and the person getting most of the flak from the manager was International defender Lee Wilkie, sent off after picking up a second yellow of the evening after Dunfermline equalised. That booking was apparently for dissent and Jim pointed out to the media that he had "Spoken to the team, and specifically Lee at half time about the need to keep our discipline in the second half, I was confident that if we did that we'd win. We'd played well to get a two goal lead and even though we'd let them pull one back we still looked well capable of taking the points."

Jim went on to say "The referee had given the goal, he wasn't going to change his decision, whether there was a foul or not is. immaterial. It's his (Wilkie) job to handle the situation and he didn't.

You do your talking on the pitch with the ball, he might have been up for a corner and scoring the winner in the last minute, you can't do that when you're sitting in the dressing room - In the end lack of discipline is the reason we've lost the game."

For all that it was a cracking evening's football at Dens with some smashing play from both sides and a fair share of controversy from referee Alan Freeland, who had the home crowd howling for most of the second half.

Dundee had raced into a two goal lead thanks to the pace and mobility of the three man strike force of Novo, Caballero and Lovell with the little Spaniard playing a big part in the opening goal, Gavin Rae slipped a ball into his path on eight minutes and he raced to the touchline before cutting back a cross which was aimed for Caballero, Nicholson donated the first. Failing to realise that he had loads of time and space he unaccountably smashed the ball into the corner of his own net rather than to safety.

Caballero came close with a drive that looked in for a moment, but sneaked past before the Dees doubled their lead in 19 minutes. Novo was again involved chasing down a loose ball and forcing Ruitenbeek to concede a corner. Hernandez's downward header was fired high into the net from five yards by Lovell. The striker looked suspiciously like he was in an offside position, but wasn't complaining as he notched his fifth goal in six starts.

The Pars hit back and Mason's free from 25 yards was spectacularly tipped away by Speroni in 20 minutes, but five minutes later Dunfermline pulled one back, Neat interplay on the right. allowed Crawford space and he slid the ball to Brewster who had acres of room on the left of the box and used that space well to fire in the equaliser. Nacho Novo almost made another contribution with an audacious attempt from 60 yards in 26 minutes, but Ruitenbeek struggled back into position to save.

Dunfermline opened much the better of the contestants after the break and Speroni had to be on top form to deny first Brewster, and then Dempsey and Mason, in a three minute spell. He could do nothing about Crawford's attempt after the striker had beaten Wilkie down the left, but Hernandez was well positioned to clear off the line.

Having been under the cosh, Dundee broke free and should have scored just after the hour Lovell's powerful running took him into space midway inside the Pars half and he slid a great ball into Novo's path and fired a shot which Ruitenbeek was at full stretch to save.

The Dutch keeper was again in action soon afterwards saving well from Brady and then at full stretch from Caballero, but Dundee were about to get caught cold, Brewster slid the ball to Crawford and the Scotland man did superbly to hold off a defender, round Speroni and fire home. Something had caught Wilkie's eye in the lead up to the goal and he voiced his protests too strongly for Mr Freeland's liking and was quickly dismissed from the action.

Dundee suffered the ultimate punishment when Dair skipped in from the right and danced past two weak challenges on the edge of the box before rapping a low left footer past Speroni.

It was a fitting end to an evening when memories of the way things used to be were stirred. Such events would not have been unexpected at any time in the previous two season's - We thought we'd grown up a bit this term. There's a bit to go yet.

Match report written by Dundee Matchday Programme

Squad Statistics (as at November 12th, 2002)

2002-03 All Time
Julian Speroni (GK)23 16 - 37 -
Jonay Hernández23 16 - 16 -
Tom Hutchinson20 10 - 10 -
David Mackay21 16 - 341
Barry Smith28 15 - 2821
Lee Wilkie22 16 - 641
Garry Brady26 8 - 8 -
Gavin Rae24 15319921
Fabian Caballero24 1547120
Steve Lovell21 105105
Nacho Novo23 143143
Lee Mair (sub)21 8 - 8 -
Juan Sara (sub)26 1528532

League Table (as at November 12th, 2002)

No league table has been added for this season.

Manager's Programme Notes

Tonight we meet Dunfermline in a game which should have gone ahead last weekend and we both go into it on the back of defeats by Rangers, though it has to be said, that both ourselves and Jimmy Calderwood's side gave good accounts of ourselves.

Certainly in the case of our game, for the first half hour, in terms of football, we matched Rangers, and created several chances.

Had we taken any of them, as we probably should, then things might have turned out differently.

The simple truth, however, is that if you fail to make the most of your opportunities when facing the Old Firm, then you know that you will be punished because they are always going to create more than their fair share of chances.

Probably, the only disappointing aspect of the defeat was that we lost two goals from set pieces, and with all the quality they possess, defending against them is a demanding enough assignment without handing anything on a plate to them.

That said, I can only applaud the efforts of the players for the resolve shown after being reduced to ten men and losing a second goal early in the second

half. Certainly, they gave it their best shot in the second half, forcing Klos into two or three saves and whilst we did concede another two goals, their efforts ensured that we didn't get the round around that Rangers have meted out to other sides in

recent weeks.

And we will need to maintain that level of commitment as we head into this evening's fixture against Dunfermline, who like us, other than against the Old Firm have been picking up points on a regular basis.

Such consistency has meant that they have been hovering in the two places just below the Old Firm all season and they'll be out to continue in like manner.

I watched their CIS Cup tie with Rangers last Thursday and thought they did very well and, like us the previous Saturday, were unlucky not to score before Rangers did.

Given that we can go level on points with the Pars if we win this evening, it doesn't need me to tell you how important a game this will be and the way both sides have been playing, it also has the potential to be a very entertaining contest as well.