Dundee finally won a home match this year and for the first time since mid-February, I get the chance to write a positive article for TEB.
It really was a must-win for Dundee on Saturday and the team delivered on the field. The players may have looked nervous on the park and the fans may have well been the same in the stands, but the relief that echoed round the stadium at the end of the ninety-minutes was notable by everyone linked with Dundee.
We are in the midst of a relegation battle and with this game being the first of five since the annual split of the Premiership, it was imperative that the team started with a win.
We had gone six home matches without a victory and with also no wins in the last six games, the fans had started to forget what it was like to celebrate a victory and no doubt the players.
Boss Neil McCann was having to watch this game from the stands following a ban that was handed to him for an earlier incident in the last tie between the teams. A war-of-words had erupted between our manager with rival counterpart Tommy Wright, who said his side were blameless of anything that happened that day.
For any Palace fans that don’t know the story, some words were exchanged after our 4-0 defeat before McCann was man handled by the St Johnstone goalkeeper Zander Clark. McCann raised his hand to him before being led away and that’s when Tommy Wright started acting the ‘Big Yin’ before rushing towards the celebrating away support.
What happened next was Wright running into the referee’s office to complain about the incident and then he was accused of lodging a complaint to the Scottish Football Association that saw McCann and Clark handed a two-match ban. McCann’s was reduced to just the one and when asked about Wright in the lead up to this clash, he declared that his fellow manager was ‘Not welcome at Dens.’
Got all that? Now back to the actual football…
We got off to the best possible start. With just 46 seconds on the clock, Sofien Moussa put the Dee ahead much to the shock of the St Johnstone players and fans, and no doubt ours. It was not the most elegant of goals but the ball did come off him and into the net so he was rightfully credited with it.
The Saints came at the Dee looking to equalise straight away but as nervous as the Dundee team seemed to be, they could not find a way past us. That was until with five minutes to go, they did so and it was utterly devasting.
We failed to clear our lines and this set up Steve MacLean to make it 1-1. Their fans went wild in the away stand, their players celebrated in front of the home support at the Derry and their manager Tommy Wright looked up to Dundee manager Neil McCann with his arms opened wide with a smugness after their war of words. It felt like a huge kick in the balls.
Things looked bleak for the Dee. It was looking like two points dropped and we were about to be dragged even further into the battle to escape the drop.
Then, in a moment of sheer magic, a long Cammy Kerr free-kick was met by the head of Sofien Moussa who powered home the winner with just minutes left on the clock.
The home fans erupted. The players jumped on each another in sheer delight. The manager celebrated the winner in the stand while gazing down at Tommy Wright who moments ago was revelling in his team’s equaliser.
When the final whistle was blown, Wright stormed down the tunnel. The Dundee players all rushed on to congratulate each other and the fans waited behind to applaud their team and show their appreciation.
There is no doubt about it, this was a massive three points. Priceless really.
So that’s one game down with four to go and up next is a trip to Fir Park to face Motherwell, a team we have failed to beat this year. They have one eye on a Scottish Cup Final along with a long list of injuries piling up. If ever there was a good time to go to their ground to grab a result, that time is now.
There is still many scenarios on how this season can end but if we can get a win here, and results go our way, we can potentially be eight points ahead of 11th place with nine left to play for.
That’s the best-case scenario we could be looking at come Saturday night and what a scenario it will be if we can achieve this.
SPFL PREMIERSHIP ROUND-UP
Right, lets get the top six results out the way.
Celtic were beaten 2-1 by Hibs and with The Rangers winning 2-1 at home to Hearts, it sets up a potential title decider next Sunday.
Aberdeen ended the Kilmarnock juggernaut by beaten them 2-0 in Ayrshire.
Ross County and Motherwell drew a blank up in the Highlands and with Partick staging a comeback to beat Hamilton at home, these results put County back to the foot of the table.
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