Dundee 1
Partick Thistle 0
League (First Division)

1 - 0

League (First Division)
Saturday, December 29th, 2007
Dens Park
Attendance: 4,548
3:00 PM Kick-off

Kevin McDonald (90)

Team Managers
Alex Rae
Ian McCall

Starting Eleven
1. Craig Samson
2. David Worrell
3. Gary Mackenzie
4. Milan Palenik
5. Eddie Malone
6. Paul McHale
7. Scott Robertson
8. Kevin McDonald
9. Gavin Swankie
10. Jani Šturm
11. Robert Davidson
Craig Hinchcliffe .1
Alan Archibald .2
Willie Kinniburgh .3
Marc Twaddle .4
Kevin McKinlay .5
John Robertson .6
David Rowson .7
Scott Chaplain .8
Gary Harkins .9
Paul di Giacom .10
Liam Buchanan .11

12. Ludovic Roy
14. Paul Dixon
15. Jan Zemlik
16. Frédéric Daquin
17. Danny Griffin
Jonathan Tuffey .12
Ryan McStay .14
Steve Murray. 15
Mark Roberts .16
Simon Storey .17

Jan Zemlik for Robert Davidson (65)
Frédéric Daquin for David Worrell (73)
Mark Roberts for Paul di Giacomo (58)
Simon Storey for Scott Chaplain (75)

Kevin McDonald (68)
William Kinniburgh (30)
William Kinniburgh (39)
Gary Harkins (59)

Red Cards
None. William Kinniburgh (39)
Match Officials

Euan Norris (Referee)

Match Report

Dundee got back to winning ways against 10- man Partick Thistle as Kevin McDonald's eighth goal of the season kept up Dundee's title push keeping the one point gap intact on league leaders Hamilton.

Both Craig Samson and Craig Hinchcliffe were in fine form to keep the score line black until McDonald snatched the win with a late striker before sealing the deal on a new contract which will keep him at the club until 2009.

Dundee started the stronger with Gavin Swankie and Milan Palenik testing the away defence with lan McCall's men equal to the efforts before two defensive challenges prevented Scott Chaplain stealing the lead for the visitors.

Alex Rae's men continued to pressure and in the 14th minute Gary McKenzie was able to get his head to Gavin Swankie's first corner of the game after a deflected Paul McHale shot, but his effort slipped wide of goal.

With twenty-one minutes gone Partick created their first shot on target with David Rowson's low shot from Kevin McKinlay's cut back skipping wide of Samson's right post.

Kevin McDonald then had the ball in the back of the net in the 28th minute. Gavin Swankie's goal bound effort was needlessly tapped in on the line by the teenager who had run into an offside position much to the protests of the home support.

Both sides looked to up the pace with Paul Di Giacamo testing Samson on two separate occasions before Kevin McDonald's effort from Paul McHale's chip was held by Hinchcliffe.

With six first half minutes left to play Willie Kinniburgh foolishly reacted to a challenge by Jani Sturm with referee Euan Norris showing the defender a straight red card for a stamp on the Czech forward.

Although down to ten men Partick continued to press with Gary Harkins' thirty five yard speculative effort testing Samson at his near post before Paul Di Giacamo was replaced by Mark Roberts.

Gavin Swankie's corner was then fumbled by Hinchcliffe before he recovered to collect the ball from the feet of Davidson who started the game in the place of the suspended Derek Lyle with Harkins testing Samson at the other end.

It looked certain not to be Dundee's day in the 82nd minute when yet another Dundee goal was chopped off for offside: Eddie Malone's 30 yard strike came crashing back off the post with Sturm on hand to head the ball into the back of the net but once again the forward had failed to beat the offside trap and the score stayed level.

In extra time however Partick were caught out by Freddie Daquin's pace with the substitute setting up McDonald in the area and helping the home side to all three points. The Frenchman cut inside with his first effort blocked by the defence. The ball then fell back into his path for him to slide the ball into McDonald who skipped past Rowson and unleashed a low shot which beat Hinchcliffe at his left upright.

There were three bookings in the game: Kevin McDonald for the home side with Gary Harkins booked for lan McCall's men. In addition Willie Kinniburgh was also cautioned with thirty-one minutes gone before being shown a straight red card in the 39th minute.

Match report written by Joanna Topping - Official Dundee website

Squad Statistics (as at December 29th, 2007)

2007-08 All Time
Craig Samson (GK)23 19 - 19 -
Gary Mackenzie22 20 - 44 -
Eddie Malone22 8 - 8 -
Milan Palenik - 193193
David Worrell29 20 - 20 -
Kevin McDonald19 2188813
Scott Robertson22 2251089
Paul McHale26 201322
Robert Davidson21 1973410
Jani Šturm25 182182
Gavin Swankie24 2126111
Jan Zemlik (sub)30 172172
Frédéric Daquin (sub)29 191191

League Table (as at December 29th, 2007)

No league table has been added for this season.

Manager's Programme Notes

First can I take this opportunity of wishing everyone the compliments of the season.

I hope that you had an excellent Christmas and that we were able to add to your enjoyment by getting the result we were looking for at Dumfries on Boxing Day.

We went into the hectic festive fixture programme level on points with Hamilton after wins over Stirling and Morton.

What pleased me most about our win over Stirling in out last home game was how professional the boys were in their approach.

That they got a late consolation was neither here nor there.

Having scored three times to put us in a winning position, it was important not to do anything silly and I was delighted with the way we elected to keep the ball.

As well as being the right thing to do defensively, it gave us our best chance of scoring - Stirling came here and played two banks of four and not charging up the pitch was the best way to draw them out.

Things did not go as well as we wanted early on, but the boys stayed patient and made sure they did not give anything away.

When I saw the way we intended to go from the start was not working I made a tactical change, which brought us the much-needed breakthrough.

It's all about winning and we are not going to persevere with something that is not working just to save face.

If it was professionalism and patience that brought us three points, maturity was the key to our win over Morton at Cappielow.

Many viewed that game as having the potential to be a very difficult game, so we were very pleased with how the boys handled it.

First half particularly, we played some good football and looked really comfortable and taking the lead was just reward for our efforts.

After the break, Morton threw a lot of men forward, but, again, I thought we looked comfortable at the back and threatened to hit them on the counter attack, which we eventually did. That was pleasing because breaking quickly and hurting teams is something we've been working on.

The way we played showed that the boys are maturing as a team and becoming aware of what is required of them in certain situations.

One major plus factor about having brought forward and won the home game with Hamilton was that we had more time to rest, recover and prepare for the two games this week.

Having one less game than most of the other teams is no bad thing.

Hopefully that enabled us to carry on the good work at Dumfries in midweek to set us up for what is another difficult game against Partick Thistle this afternoon.

I was pleased at how we went about our business when we beat them back on a hot afternoon in August, but, and especially in view of their recent form, we'll need to play better than we did at Firhill when we were a bit fortunate to come away with a point.