Dunfermline Athletic

Dundee United 3 Dunfermline 0

Saturday, 9th Sep 2023

SPFL Trust Trophy Third Round: Six changes for Pars. Louis Moult (18) 1-0: Aaron Comrie (og 34) 2-0: Declan Glass (37) 3-0:

Dunfermline returned to Tannadice four weeks after visiting on league business. On this occasion it was the Third Round of the SPFL Trust Trophy that resulted in the journey back to the City of Discovery.

With no fewer than nine players out from the previous Saturday team selection was going to be interesting. Kyle Benedictus, Rhys Breen and Kane Ritchie-Hosler had joined Craig Wighton, Matty Todd and Deniz Mehmet on the injured list and with Harrison Sharp cup tied, Sam Fisher suspended and Ben Summers absent on international duty with Scotland U21s. So the five changes to the starting eleven were Max Little, Miller Fenton, Paul Allan, Andrew Tod and Taylor Sutherland.

Dundee United manager Jim Goodwin made three changes from the team that won 3-0 away to Ayr United. Into the home side came Ross Graham, Jordan Tillson and Kai Fotheringham.

It was a warm afternoon in Dundee but the sun was hidden by cloud as Dunfermline kicked off defending the goal in front of their own supporters. It was United however who had the first attempt at goal, debutant Tillson, on loan from Ross County, bending a shot from 25 yards out wide right.

Kai Fotheringham launched a ninth minute shot over Max Little’s crossbar and despite Dunfermline linking some nice passes together, United enjoyed the bulk of the possession. It was a Fotheringham cross that led to the opening goal, his cross into the six yard box being met by the head of Louis MOULT. 1-0

With United pushing forward Tod won possession on the halfway line and he sent Sutherland speeding in towards goal but three United players tracked him, he was still able to cut back to Michael O’Halloran who thumped an on target shot that felled Scott McMann. The match was halted for a water break in 25th minute.

Ewan Otoo drove forward in 29 minutes and played the ball off Tod for Sutherland to shoot from 20 yards. The effort was deflected out left for the Pats first corner of the day but United defended that. Fotheringham was next set up for another shot from the right, he hit it with power but beyond the far post.

The United no.18 was instrumental in creating the second United goal. His cross Aaron Comrie in a difficult position in front of goal and in his efforts to clear and avoid an opponent getting to the ball, turned the ball into his own net. 2-0

2-0 became 3-0 when Declan Glass carved a route into the Pars box and dispatched an unstoppable shot into the roof of the Fifers’ net.

Dunfermline tried hard to reduce the deficit before half time. O’Halloran twice made the right side of the United penalty box only to see his crosses cut out but a Comrie cross in 45th minute found Miller Fenton and his header back across goal was kept out by the right goalpost and Tod’s follow up sent the ball agonisingly wide. Moffat had the final attempt of the half, his net bound shot deflected out for a corner on the right that the Tangerines successfully kept out.

Half time: Dundee United 3 Dunfermline 0

United had an excellent chance just two minutes into the second half. Again it came from a Fotheringham cross and Tillman, under pressure from defenders, could not keep his effort on target.

A double substitution was made by James McPake in 53rd minute with Josh Edwards and Lewis McCann replacing Miller Fenton and Taylor Sutherland. Dunfermline had two shots in 60th minute. Comrie sent a left footed effort over the bar from the edge of the box and next Moffat fired a low shot narrowly outside the left post. Unfortunately that was the Blackpool loanee’s last involvement. Despite the physios attentions he could not continue and that heralded a debut for 17 year old Ewan McLeod.

Dundee United followed suit bringing on Owen Stirton for his debut along with Mathew Cudjoe. Glenn Middleton and Louis Moult left the field.

Lewis McCann raised the hopes of the 423 Pars fans bursting into the opposition box to fire a low shot that unluckily went narrowly wide right. Next the other Pars sub McLeod cleverly switched play to send Edwards on on the left, his cross travelled right through the six yard box without any takers.

Two Dunfermline corners were defended in 73 minutes and another two minutes later. United seemed content with their lead and they were allowing the visitors to play higher up the park. Otoo popped a shot nine minutes from the end that was too high and in 83 minutes a fine cross from Edwards found McCann nicely placed in front of goal but he just couldn’t convert the opportunity.

McLeod had a decent shot that just cleared the bar and from the right McCann sent the ball through the box. There was to be no way through to the United goal and it is Jim Goodwin’s men who are in Thursday’s Fourth Round draw.

DUNDEE UNITED: Jack Walton: Liam Grimshaw, Declan Gallagher, Ross Graham, Scott McMann (Flynn Duffy 74); Kai Fotheringham, Declan Glass, Jordan Tillson, Glenn Middleton (Mathew Cudjoe 65): Tony Watt (c) (Scott Constable 74), Louis Moult (Owen Stirton 65)
SUBS NOT USED: Kieran Freeman, Kevin Holt, Ollie Denham, Bryan Mwangi, Ruairidh Adams (GK)
SCORERS: Moult (18), Comrie (og 34), Glass (37)
YELLOW CARD: Tillson (88)

DUNFERMLINE: Max Little: Aaron Comrie, Chris Hamilton (c), Ewan Otoo: Michael O’Halloran, Paul Allan, Andrew Tod, Joe Chalmers, Miller Fenton (Josh Edwards 53): Taylor Sutherland (Lewis McCann 53), Owen Moffat (Ewan McLeod 62).
SUBS NOT USED: Jake Sutherland, Liam Hoggan, Andy Collier (GK)

REFEREE: Craig Napier
WEATHER: Mainly Sunny 24°C

NEXT MATCH: cinch Championship (away) v Queen’s Park, Saturday 16th September 2023, kick off 3.00pm at Hampden Park

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