2 - 3
2 - 3
League (Premier League)
Ryan Conroy (19)
Mark Stewart (83)
Rory McKenzie (4)
Chris Johnston (58)
Sammy Clingan (73)
45. Steve Simonsen
25. Lewis Toshney
17. Kyle Benedictus
2. Gary Irvine
18. Declan Gallagher
29. Gary Harkins
6. Iain Davidson
8. Kevin McBride
11. Ryan Conroy
20. Jim McAlister
10. John Baird
Cammy Bell .1
Jeroen Tesselaar .2
Ross Barbour .25
Mark O'Hara .38
Mohamadou Sissoko .88
Sammy Clingan .8
Jude Winchester .28
Chris Johnston .30
Ross Davidson .31
Kris Boyd .11
Rory McKenzie .24
36. Alex Baird
32. James Thomson
28. Mark Kerr
27. Mark Stewart
24. Colin Nish
9. Carl Finnigan
47. Andrew Barrowman
Anssi Jaakkola .53
Lee Ashcroft .35
James Fowler .4
Ibrahim Rabiu .19
Paul Heffernan .14
Borja Pérez .15
Cillian Sheridan .12
Mark Stewart for John Baird (60)
Carl Finnigan for Gary Harkins (70)
James Thomson for Lewis Toshney (75)
Ibrahim Rabiu for Jude Winchester (65)
Paul Heffernan for Kris Boyd (76)
Lee Ashcroft for Mohamadou Sissoko (81)
Kyle Benedictus (34)
Gary Irvine (80)
James Thomson (92)
|Mohamadou Sissoko (56)
Euan Norris (Referee)
After the nerve jangling tension of the last two months today's defeat against Klimarnock at Dens was very much a end of season affair. Killie won with goals from McKenzie, Johnston and Clingan, while Dundee replied through Conroy and Stewart. The Dark Blues played plenty of good football in the first half, but they ran out of steam and ideas after half time and Kilmarnock deserved their win, inspired by teenage winger Chris Johnston.
Dundee made two changes from last week; Kyle Benedictus returned from suspension in place of Matt Lockwood, and Ryan Conroy came in for Brian Easton.
Killie took the lead with a goal that was atrocious or brilliant, depending on the team you support. Rory McKenzie picked up the ball wide on the right on the halfway line. He headed purposefully for the penalty area while the Dundee players were all busy picking up the players they expected him to pass to. To his credit McKenzie had the wit to realise there was no challenge coming and kept going. Too late Lewis Toshney spotted the danger but couldn't get a tackle in before McKENZIE slotted the ball past Simonsen.
Dundee responded by settling into a long spell of dominance during which they equalised and should really have built up a match winning lead.
The Dark Blues repeatedly sliced through the Kilmarnock back line with neat passing and smart running.
Harkins couldn't get enough power in his header to worry Cammy Bell after great play from Baird had sent Irvine clear on the right. Next Toshney powered forward but shanked his shot wide after a one-two with Baird left him with only Bell to beat.
John Baird easily beat Sissoko, the hapless Killie centre back, but shot over. The Dark Blues kept piling forward with impresive fluency and the equaliser soon arrived.
Baird again freed Irvine on the right. His low cross took a slight deflection, beating Harkins and Bell at the near post leaving CONROY to fire into the empty net from only a yard out.
In a brief excursion upfield Killie's diminutive, floppy haired winger reached the byline and cut the ball back for Boyd, whose weak shot was blocked.
Dundee were soon back on the attack. Another incisive pass from Baird nearly played Conroy in, but Bell was quick to pounce on the ball. Baird then made a great run down the right to take a long pass from Benedictus. The cross flew across goal and Harkins couldn't turn it in at the back post.
Bell was the busier keeper and had to save from Harkins who had wriggled into space on the edge of the penalty area.
Mohamadou Sissoko was giving a textbook demonstration of the bombscare school of central defending. He was fortunate to get the benefit of the doubt when a less generous referee than Mr Norris might have decided he hauled Baird to the ground as he was about to run in on Bell.
Harkins then sent Toshney racing to the byline but Killie escaped the resulting scramble in the goalmouth. Yet another great ball from Baird sent Irvine down the right, but he couldn't get his cross.
The first half was full of good football and fine entertainment. However, Dundee had failed to finish of any of the lovely moves after equalising, and there were worrying signs of sloppiness at the back, as exemplified by the lack of awareness when Kilmarnock took the lead.
Sadly Dundee couldn't repeat their first half fluency when they returned from the half time break. Kilmarnock brought far more urgency to their game and concentrated on feeding Johnston on the left. The Killie youngster caught the backlash from Peter Pawlett's dive last week and took some rather unfair stick from the Dundee fans. There is a huge difference between diving and a featherweight youngster bouncing off experienced professionals when they go shoulder to shoulder.
However, when Johnston had the chance to run at the defence Dundee had no answer. The second goal came just before the hour when Johnston cut in from the left wing. The ball rebounded to him when he tried to feed it through the Dundee back line. JOHNSTON took another touch and scored from 20 yards with a low shot off the post.
The penalty area at the Shankly end was badly cut up, and Steve Simonsen had problems with a few passbacks bobbling over divots. Just after Johnston's goal he wildly miskicked a Benedictus passback and the ball rolled a couple of feet wide of the goal.
Cammy Bell had to move smartly to tip over a fierce 30 yarder from Kevin McBride, but for the most part Dundee's second half performance was disappointingly flat. Killie took an infuriatingly easy third goal that had similarities to the previous two. Substitute Ibrahim was allowed to run in from the right and play the ball across the edge of the penalty area for Sammy CLINGAN in space to sidefoot the ball home.
Dundee didn't look like making a fightback and the three substitutions did little to change the game. John Brown replaced Baird, sending on Mark Stewart, whose fondness for playing on the shoulder of the last defender looked a promising tactic to exploit Sissoko's lack of concentration. Finnigan came on for Harkins and youngster James Thomson made his debut, replacing Toshney. Dundee were now playing 4-4-2 with Thomson at right back and Irvine at left back.
Killie looked more likely to get another goal than the dispirited Dee looked like making a late charge. McKenzie fired a free kick It was almost a surprisehe Dark Blues did pull a goal back when Finnigan's flick sent STEWART free to lob Bell and score a remarkably simple goal.
Including injury time there were still 10 minutes to go, but Dundee couldn't pose any serious problems for the Kilmarnock defence, which was now strengthened by Sissoko's substitution. Chris Johnston remained by far the most impressive player on the pitch and it was a tough deal for James Thomson to have to cope with a speedy winger brimming with confidence and skill.
In the end there couldn't be any arguing with Kilmarnock's win. Dundee had the domination and the chances to win the game before half time. Their failure to finish fine moves, and their persistent inability to deal with Killie's runner from midfield meant that the Dee got what they deserved. Close scrutiny of the video evidence by John Brown may well lead to some uncomfortable discussions with the players.
It's a pity that after all the heroic efforts of the last few months that the last home game should be such a flat antic-climax. No doubt some of these Dundee players won't wear a dark blue shirt at Dens Park again and this was a disappointing final game. For Dundee supporters the undoubted highlight was Robert Douglas being escorted around the pitch by Pat Liney at half time; two Dee legends of different generations who received a standing ovation from the South Enclosure, Bobby Cox and Main Stands.
That slow and emotional walk at half time will be remembered long after the rest of the match has been forgotten. Robert Douglas gave outstanding service to Dundee FC in his two spells and will always have a special place in the hearts of Dees. Thanks for everything Rab.
Match report written by James Christie - Official Dundee website
|Steve Simonsen (GK)
|James Thomson (sub)
|Carl Finnigan (sub)
|Mark Stewart (sub)
No league table has been added for this season.
After the bitter disappointment of last week's result, it's important that we show the right attitude and application, and we have the opportunity to show we have that in our locker this afternoon against Kilmarnock.
Kenny Sheils has his side playing some very decent football, and they were very unfortunate not to make the top six this season.
I have no doubts however that my players will show the same attitude they have displayed since I've came here, and we'll give a good account of ourselves. Some may say our season is all but over, but guys in the dressing room may still be playing for their futures, so there is still plenty at stake.
As it's the last home game, I would like to thank every single supporter for their terrific backing since I took this job back in February. I have received nothing but good wishes from the fans of this club, and it has inspired me consistently to do this job to the best of my ability and take this team forward, a task I very much look forward to next season.