Dundee 1
Heart of Midlothian 1
League (Premiership)

1 - 1

League (Premiership)
Sunday, April 1st, 2018
Dens Park
Attendance: 5,496
3:00 PM Kick-off

Sofien Moussa (28)
Ross Callachan (2)

Team Managers
Neil McCann
Craig Levein

Starting Eleven
12. Elliot Parish
15. Jon Aurtenetxe
4. Steven Caulker
24. Josh Meekings
6. Darren O'Dea
21. Roarie Deacon
8. Glen Kamara
18. Paul McGowan
14. Mark O'Hara
9. Sofien Moussa
17. Simon Murray
Jon McLaughlin .1
John Souttar .4
Aaron Hughes .5
Christophe Berra .6
Marcus Godinho .28
Danny Amankwaa .7
Don Cowie .15
Ross Callachan .20
Joaquim Adão .66
Kyle Lafferty .9
Steven Naismith .14

38. Calum Ferrie
3. Kevin Holt
2. Cammy Kerr
5. Genséric Kusunga
28. Lewis Spence
7. A-Jay Leitch-Smith
33. Craig Wighton
Jack Hamilton .13
Connor Randall .16
Harry Cochrane .47
Lewis Moore .33
David Milinkovic .11
Euan Henderson .43
Anthony McDonald .46

Genséric Kusunga for Darren O'Dea (54)
Kevin Holt for Jon Aurtenetxe (81)
A-Jay Leitch-Smith for Sofien Moussa (85)
Lewis Moore for Danny Amankwaa (71)
Euan Henderson for Ross Callachan (71)
Harry Cochrane for Joaquim Adão (79)

Roarie Deacon (7)
Paul McGowan (27)
Mark O'Hara (40)
Simon Murray (94)
Ross Callachan (15)
Kyle Lafferty (21)
Christophe Berra (31)
Steven Naismith (68)

Red Cards
None. None.
Match Officials

Kevin Clancy (Referee)
Frank Connor & David Roome (Assistants)
Gavin Duncan (Fourth Official)

Match Report

Dundee recovered from a poor start to draw 1-1 against Hearts in the Easter Sunday game at Dens Park. Both goals came in the first half. Ross Callachan gave this visitor an early lead but Sofien Moussa grabbed a deserved equaliser. The Dark Blues had the edge for the rest of the match, but had to settle for a point.

Dundee made two changes from the team that faced Aberdeen 15 days ago. Jon Aurtenetxe and Simon Murray came in for Kevin Holt and A-Jay Leitch-Smith, who were both on the bench along with Craig Wighton, making his first appearance in a match squad this season. Hearts’ only change to bring in Ross Callachan for Michael Smith.

The Dark Blues got off to the worst possible start and were caught snoozing as Hearts helped themselve to a goal after two minutes. In the build up the Jam Tarts were able to play the ball around far too easily and no Dee reacted quickly enough when they went for goal. Ross CALLACHAN cut in from the right and curled an angled shot around Parish from 16 yards.

It shouldn’t take an avoidable early goal to stir the team into decisive action, but the Dundee players did react well to that setback. Dundee could have been on level terms only two minutes later. The ever cool and composed Glem Kamara sent Simon Murray past the last defenders with an incisive pass. Murray took the ball on, but his attempted dink over McLaughlin was well saved by the Hearts keeper.

Roarie Deacon was causing Hearts serious problems running at Aaron Hughes. With Paul McGowan consistently finding space and using it creatively in the hole between the midfield and strikers, Dundee were inventive and dangerous.

Murray went close again, lashing the ball over the bar under pressure at the end of a fast break led by McGowan. The play was flowing mostly towards the visitors’ goal, but Don Cowie forced a good save from Elliott Parish after Hearts worked a neat, short corner.

Dundee’s pressing and Deacon’s crossing always looked producing an equaliser, but the Dee had to survive a scare before it arrived. Hearts were erratic and frequently careless, but every so often they would put together a high quality passing move. One ended with a good Parish save from Kyle Lafferty’s quick 15 yard shot. The save was vital because the Dee were level within a minute. Mark O’Hara found Deacon in space and the wide player had time to look up and put over a wonderful curling cross between the keeper and defenders for Sofien MOUSSA to arrive at the far post and bundle the ball into the net.

The goal gave the Dee renewed impetus and Hearts picked up a couple of bookings for cynical fouls to stop promising moves. The first half ended with the Dark Blues on top, but unable to force the second goal their play would have deserved.

The Dee started the second half on the front foot and O’Hara’s shot from distance fizzed a foot over the crossbar after a good run by Deacon. The defence coped well with the disruption of Darren O’Dea limping off and Genseric Kusunga coming on. The substitute settled in well and Dundee’s back three were mostly in control of the Hearts attacks.

The Dark Blues came desperately close to taking the lead from a corner. Steven Caulker headed the ball on for Murray, whose close range header was scrambled off the line by Naismith, who then managed to turn Moussa’s follow up round the post.

Dundee went through a spell of excellent attacking football, with the moves being consistently spoilt by poor decisions and execution when a good final ball was required. Naismith earned another booking for a dreadful, deliberate foul on McGowan who was about to play Murray or Moussa in on goal.

Frustratingly this passage of play ended with Dundee temporarily ditching their fluent passing, rather than cutting out the poor final balls. Roarie Deacon brought out a good save from McLoughlin after he jinked into space at the edge of the penalty area following a good run by Murray. After an outstanding first half Deacon found it harder to get into the match in the second half as Hearts tried, with some success, to ensure he would get no easy possession.

Hearts meanwhile were still struggling to put together the passing game they clearly wanted to play, but now and again they would get it right and pose problems for the Dundee defence. Substitute Euan Henderson went closest with a glancing header that sailed over the crossbar.

Ten minutes from time Neil McCann send on Kevin Holt to replace Jon Aurtenetxe and this proved a surprisingly positive attacking move. Holt immediately started running aggressively at Hearts and this almost brought a quick goal. Holt’s marvellous run took him down the left, through a couple of tackles and into the penalty area. He pulled the ball back for McGowan, whose curling cross-shot just missed the angle of crossbar and post.

A-Jay Leitch-Smith replaced Moussa for the last few minutes, but the only near thing came when Simon Murray showed an astonishing burst of pace at the end of a hard-working game, burning his way down the right, round the Hearts defence and into the penalty area. Instead of picking out the well placed McGowan he went for goal and his shot was deflected harmlessly wide.

The final whistle brought mixed feelings for the Dees in the stands. This was a game that Dundee should probably have won, and the extra two points would have been hugely welcome. It was frustrating to get just one point, but the quality of play, the endeavour on show, and the confidence of the players to take the ball and play some good football were all encouraging. The single point might still be valuable, but the qualities on show from the team might ultimately be more significant. There were some very good individual performances, but the highlight of the day was a good solid performance all through the side. The big downside? That early avoidable goal was painful to watch and might have cost the Dee three points.

Match report written by James Christie - Official Dundee website

Squad Statistics (as at April 1st, 2018)

2017-18 All Time
Elliot Parish (GK)27 22 - 22 -
Jon Aurtenetxe26 18 - 18 -
Steven Caulker26 6161
Josh Meekings25 21 - 21 -
Darren O'Dea31 19 - 775
Roarie Deacon26 311311
Glen Kamara22 39 - 39 -
Paul McGowan30 3621448
Mark O'Hara22 3466611
Sofien Moussa30 29112911
Simon Murray26 7272
Genséric Kusunga (sub)30 4 - 4 -
Kevin Holt (sub)25 2511067
A-Jay Leitch-Smith (sub)28 286286

League Table (as at April 1st, 2018)

No league table has been added for this season.

Manager's Programme Notes

We come back into action today following the international break. The break gave us the opportunity to give the players some rest before starting a lot of hard training, for what will be a very important stage of the season.

Our last outing against Aberdeen was a frustrating one and was a game which was the story of our season. We hadi a golden opportunity to take the lead through A-Jay, it was great run, really well timed, but it just wouldn't sit for him and he couldn't take the chance. Then minutes later wer lose a goal which we know was preventable

There hasn't been much between the sides this season when we've played each other and this was no different. Under horrible conditions, opportunities were of premium. I felt it would be the odd goal that would decide the match and that's how it turned out

Today's game against Hearts kicks off a very demanding period with three games in six days. It will test the squad, but we are good enough to get results against anyone if we play at our best.

I'm sure you'll get right behind the team, your support will be vital