Scottish Cup Weekend Sees The Dee Back In Action
Well, I hope everyone had a fantastic Christmas and a rather drunk New Year. It has been a while since I last wrote an article for TEB and if truth be told, with the top flight in Scotland taking a break for the winter there is not much to write about!
As I say, the big league in Scotland has a three week winter break from the 31st December onwards. Some people like this break, some don’t. Personally, I didn’t mind the break this year. We ended the first half of the season with victory over St Johnstone which gave the team the opportunity to wind down a bit and as the old cliché goes, recharge the batteries.
With the January transfer window opening up, we have not heard much with rumours but we have had a new signing, contract extension, an extended loan and the departure of a player whose popularity with some of the fans becoming none existence.
I’ll start from the first activity, the departure of long standing number one Scott Bain. No-one knows the full factual story of what happened between him and manager Neil McCann but it is safe to say that with his contract up in the summer, we won’t see him playing for Dundee again. Bain has been loaned out to Hibernian but with the form that his replacement Elliot Parish is in at the moment, not many are shedding a tear.
With Bain away, we needed cover in the goalkeeper department. This signals our next bit of business with Frenchman Jeremy Malherbe agreeing a deal until the end of the season.
Two other players committed to the club until the end of the season with A-Jay Leitch-Smith extending his loan from Shrewsbury Town but the best bit of business so far (I am hoping for a few newer faces though!) for Dundee has come with Jon Aurtenetxe extending his contract to the summer.
Aurtenetx or Basuqe Jon as he is known by the fans has been a revelation since displacing Holt at left back. I don’t think it’s an coincidence that our back line has looked more solid since he came into the side and it would have been a massive loss if he was to look to be heading to pastures new.
Hopefully our transfer business is far from done. Another winger along with a goalscorer joining the ranks would be utterly delightful as would be seeing future Scotland star Jack Hendry staying at the heart of the defence.
That’s it so far. Our January business has been solid but not spectacular.
Onwards now to our match this Saturday at Dens in the Scottish Cup 4th round against Inverness Caley Thistle.
Caley have seen a resurgence in the Championship since their relegation last term. A shocking start had them teeter around the bottom three but they have eventually found their feet and have clawed their way back into the play-off mix.
We should have enough to see ourselves into the next round. However, with it being Dundee and the Scottish Cup, we cannot take that for granted.
You see, our last Scottish Cup success as way back in 1910. Since then we have become allergic to the trophy and very rarely do well in the competition. Going out to lower league teams is not a rarity either.
Regardless, we go into this match as favourites and like I said, we should finish this as the winners. Caley will give us a good game, we can expect that from them. Their recent run of form should not be taken lightly and they will offer a physical battle but we should be able to stand up and more than match them.
Then again, I just reminded myself that they are our bogey team…….