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Found 21 results

  1. TheDarkBlues

    Raith Rovers

    Raith Rovers Football Club is a Scottish professional football club based in the town of Kirkcaldy, Fife. The club was founded in 1883 and currently competes in Scottish League One as a member of the Scottish Professional Football League, having been relegated from the Scottish Championship following defeat in the Championship play-off semi-finals in 2017. The club's highest ever league position came in 1922, when it finished third behind champions Celtic and runners-up Rangers in Division One. The club has won two national trophies, the Scottish League Cup in 1994 by defeating Celtic after a penalty shoot-out and on 6 April 2014, Rovers won the 2013–14 Scottish Challenge Cup after beating Rangers 1–0 with a late goal from John Baird in extra time. The club were also runners-up in the 1949 League Cup Final as well as being losing finalists in the 1913 Scottish Cup Final. Below the top flight of Scottish football the club has won the second tier five times, finishing runners-up on the same number of occasions, the last coming in 2010–11 behind rivals Dunfermline Athletic. As a result of winning the League Cup in 1994, Raith Rovers qualified for the UEFA Cup the following season. The club managed to reach the second round, only to be defeated 4–1 on aggregate to eventual champions FC Bayern Munich. Raith's home ground is Stark's Park, an 8,867 all-seater stadium in the south of Kirkcaldy. The club has been based at the ground since 1891.
  2. TheDarkBlues

    Stark's Park

    Stark's Park is a football stadium in Kirkcaldy, Scotland. It is the home ground of Raith Rovers, who have played there since 1891. As of 2016, the ground has an all-seated capacity of 8,867. The ground was opened in 1891 (this is actually when Raith started using it, it has been around longer) and seats 8,867. It is located in Kirkcaldy, Fife. The park can clearly be seen from the railway line on the route between Edinburgh and Aberdeen. The unusual L-shaped main stand that houses the players dressing facilities and the supporters lounge was designed by the renowned Grandstand architect Archibald Leitch and was built with part funding from the sale of Alex James to Preston North End in 1925. Other funding came from a loan scheme that was not finally paid off until 1946. The terracing was open to the elements except for a covered enclosure affectionately known as the "coo shed" which stood opposite the main stand and ran approximately two-thirds of the length of the pitch. The ash and railway sleeper terracing which surrounded all sides of the ground except the stand enclosure was replaced with new concrete works in the north and south enclosures behind the goals. This work being carried out in the 1950s when a shed was erected at either end to give partial covering to the supporters. Typical of several football grounds of the time the club sold advertising space on the pitched asbestos roofs of the covered areas to companies such as R'bt Hutchison & Co (Youma Bread), The Evening Dispatch, Nelsons Cigarettes and Barnett & Morton Ltd, the local ironmonger who had erected the sheds. Shortly after the above terrace was upgraded, four large floodlighting pylons similar to those at Tynecastle Park were erected to allow evening midweek fixtures to be played all year round. Most of the cost of the above work was covered (as had become the norm) by the sale of assets, the most notable of those being Jackie Stewart to Birmingham City, Jim Baxter to Rangers and Jimmy MacEwan to Aston Villa, the latter deal also leading to Villa travelling north to play in the first match under the new lights. The ground then remained unchanged for almost thirty years until the departure of a modern-day Alex James in the form of striker Andy Harrow who in 1981 was sold to Luton Town. The sale of this latest asset allowed the board to demolish the antiquated railway enclosure and build a 1,000 seat stand on the south side and terraced concrete steps at the north side. This was how the ground was to remain until more redevelopment in the early 1990s. Anticipating a swift return after relegation from the Premier league in 1992 the board spent £250,000 on upgrading the north and south ends of the ground when the 1950s concrete was taken up and new terracing and crush barriers erected, although the sheds remained. Though the board's confidence in achieving promotion was well founded the money spent was to prove a poor investment as after the last home game of season 1995–96 the bulldozers returned and demolished both ends of the ground and the railway enclosure. Barr Construction were appointed to redevelop the stadium. Two 3,370 seat stands with inbuilt floodlight towers behind each goal and a 1000-seat stand to join onto the 1980s railway (new) stand were erected. This work brought the ground capacity up to a creditable 10,700 all seater. During all of the above changes the main pavilion remained totally unchanged with its asbestos roof, concrete steps and wooden seats and benches. A new metal roof and plastic seating were finally installed in 1999 which slightly reduced the spectator capacity to 8,473. As of the 2017/2018 season the railway stand is to be converted into a standing support section adding to the total capacity which will become 11198. Since the start of the new millennium there have been no more alterations The ground is often referred to by fans as the San Starko, in jesting reference to the San Siro. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stark's_Park
  3. TheDarkBlues

    Raith Rovers 0 – 1 Dundee

    If you have a match report for this game and would like to help us out, please contact us.
  4. TheDarkBlues

    Raith Rovers 1 - 2 Dundee

    The game got off to such a lively start that referee Mr McKendrick's patience was stretched by some hefty challenges by both sides. The opening stages offered plenty of legal excitement as each team took turns to hit the woodwork. In the second minute Kane Hemmings moved onto a loose ball and lashed a low 25 yarder against keeper McGurn's post. Next it was the turn of Lewis Vaughan to rattle Scott Bain's crossbar after the Dee keeper had failed to hold Mark Stewart's shot. Rovers never came nearly as close again in an increasingly one sided first half. Hemmings was keen to shoot on sight and another effort from distance was deflected wide for a corner. A neat move down the left ended with Hemmings spinning on the ball and shooting over the bar. The opening goal came midway through the first half after Nick Ross broke up a Rovers' attack. Greg Stewart raced through the midfield and returned the ball to Ross, who found HEMMINGS in space to drill a low shot past McGurn. The Dark Blues settled down in control of the match. Nicky Low was particularly prominent showing lots of energy and bite, and a good range of passing. Dundee were able to hold onto the ball patiently in the Rovers' half, probing dangerously for openings. The midfield diamond, with Gary Harkins in a surprisingly deep role, and Stewart in the advanced spot behind the strikers, was proving highly effective at dominating the home side. The final member of the midfield was Nick Ross, who showed himself to be a neat and clever player, linking well with his colleagues. Width was provided by energetic bursts up the wings by full backs Gary Irvine and Kevin Holt. Up front Rory Loy and Kane Hemmings, ably assisted by Greg Stewart, were giving the Rovers' defence a testing evening. The home side must have been happy to reach the break only a goal behind. Hemmings came closest to a second after a lovely combination with Stewart, but his curling shot was well saved by McGurn. The Dark Blues made four changes at half time; Paul McGinn, Darryl Meggatt and Julen Etxabeguren came on in defence for Gary Irvine, Thomas Konrad and James McPake. In attack Luka Tankulic replaced Rory Loy. It took only two minutes of the second for the Dee to add to their lead. Stewart found space wide on the left from a free kick. His hard, low cross was missed by McGurn. Meggatt took a stab at the ball, but his central defensive partner Julen ETXABEGUREN tapped it over the line at the far post. Rovers had looked out of contention, but surprisingly pulled a goal back quickly. Anderson's low cross from the right was deflected into the path of James CRAIGEN who scooped the ball past Bain for a goal that was almost as scruffy as the one the Dark Blues had just scored. Craigen might not have connected cleanly with that shot, but when he took aim from 20 yards a few minutes later he couldn't have hit the ball any more sweetly. Bain was happy to push the thunderbolt round the post for a corner. Rovers stepped up a gear after their goal and competed much more effectively. Etxabeguren and Meggatt both looked capable individually, but as a pairing they were still a work in progress. Rovers threatened to get through gaps in the Dee's defence on more than one occasion in the second half. Rovers had their best spell of the game in the 15 minutes that followed the goal and should have equalised after an hour. Vaughan beat a high and square defensive line to run clear. He rolled the ball across goal to set up a golden chance for former Dee Mark Stewart, who took a heavy touch and allowed a grateful Bain to block. Dundee regained control after that scare and twice went close. Low and Stewart each had goal-bound shots deflected just outside the woodwork. Midway through the half the Dark Blues made their last two substitutions. Andy Black and Philip Roberts came on for Nick Ross and Kane Hemmings. The Dee had the better of the game in the closing stages, but long spells of possession football didn't produce any more clear chances. Rovers made all six of their substitutions in the last half hour, and lost much of the impetus their goal had given them. The final attempt of the evening was by Lewis Vaughan, whose free kick from just outside the penalty area had to be tipped over the bar by Bain. Tonight's game was conspicuously more robust than the average pre-season friendly. The frequent lectures from the referee following illegal tackles suggested that there may have been a good few bookings if this had been a competitive match. Dundee's approach was based on keeping the ball and working hard to get it back when Rovers did have it. Some of the Dark Blues possession football was very pleasing to watch, although they might have shown greater urgency at times to penetrate the home defence. Nevertheless, the win was well deserved and the Dark Blues looked a much sharper and more composed team than their Championship opponents. Raith Rovers 4-4-2 McGurn Thomson (Ford 85), Toshney, Benedictus (Bates 75), McKeown Anderson (Megginson 62), Callachan (Matthews 69), McCord (Petrie 69), Craigen (Robertson 75) Vaughan, Stewart Unused subs: Cuthbert (gk), Laidlaw (gk), Court, Campbell Goal: Craigen (51) Booked: none Dundee FC 4-1-2-1-2 Bain Irvine (McGinn ht), Konrad (Etxabeguren ht), McPake (Meggatt ht), Holt Harkins Ross (Andy Black 67), Low Stewart Loy, Hemmings (Roberts 67) Unused sub: Mitchell (gk) Goals: Hemmings (22), Etxabeguren (47) Booked: none Referee: John McKendrick Report: James Christie
  5. TheDarkBlues

    Dundee 4 - 0 Raith Rovers

    This performance illustrated the strength of squad now available to Paul Hartley. The team had six changes from Saturday. Scott Bain and Philip Roberts made their debuts and all three of Saturday's substitutes, Iain Davidson, Martin Boyle and Peter MacDonald kept their places while Greg Stewart also started. Bain played behind an unchanged four man defence; Jim McAlister was the only player from Saturday's midfield and forwards to start. Dundee lined up with a very adventurous 4-4-2 with Boyle and Roberts offering plenty of pace on the wings. Boyle provided the first shot after only a minute. The ball took a slight deflection that sent it over the bar. When Roberts' corner came over Greg STEWART was completely unmarked and rose to score with a powerful header from 10 yards. Rovers' defence was all over the place in the early stages and they were fortunate not to concede again. Defensive hesitancy allowed MacDonald and Stewart room on the edge of the penalty area, but Stewart's shot was straight at keeper Cuthbert. The visitors pulled themselves together and looked for a spell as if they might make a contest of the match. They were fielding three ex-Dees, Ryan Conroy, Christian Nadé and Mark Stewart. Nadé's strength and close control posed occasional problems, but it was Conroy who came closest to equalising. He whipped in a free kick that Bain tipped onto the bar and out for a corner. The Dark Blues always looked dangerous when they came forward and Rovers' right back Thomson was struggling to deal with the speed of Roberts. MacDonald and Stewart caused the visitors' central defence endless problems with their clever movement and exchanges. Kevin Cuthbert was the only man in the Raith rearguard who could feel happy about his performance and he did well to keep out a stream of shots from the Dee's strikers. Dundee eventually scored a deserved second goal just before the break and it was a cracker. Paul MCGINN cut in from the right and hit a sweet, curling left shot into the top corner from 22 yards. Thomas Konrad was replaced by Paul McGowan at half time and Iain Davidson dropped back into central defence. The change didn't disrupt the Dee. Raith's resistance largely evaporated and Dundee went on to play some lovely football in a one sided second half. Dundee seemed to have scored a third when Cuthbert spilled a Stewart shot. Boyle turned in the loose ball, but the referee ruled the goal out for a foul on the keeper. The third goal followed quickly. Boyle raced clear on the right and played a low cross for MACDONALD to flick the ball home. Raith's defence had a deeply uncomfortable first half, but the second half proved to be a nightmare for them. Harkins came on for McAlister after the third goal and Dundee settled down to torment the visitors with slick and attractive attacking that really should have brought more than one further goal. The final goal came after good play by Stewart and MacDonald, whose shot bounced off a defender. BOYLE picked up the loose ball and fired past Cuthbert. Tankulic replaced MacDonald for the last 20 minutes and Dundee continued to carve open the Raith defence at will. The game was now very open and there was the odd moment of slackness in the home defence. McPake played a poor crossfield pass that was intercepted by Stewart who ran clear to take the ball round Bain. He should have scored, but gave Davidson enough time to get back and clear from the goal line. Most of the play, and all the good football, was at the other end, however. Stewart had dropped deeper, and he joined Harkins and McGowan in playing a stream of delightful passes around the Rovers' defence. Boyle and Tankulic had a few shots each, but Cuthbert was having a fine game in goal and managed to keep the Dee at bay. When he was beaten the woodwork came to Rovers' rescue when Tankulic blasted the ball against the crossbar from close range. Dundee made Rovers look a pale shadow of the side that gave the Dark Blues five hard games last season. Tonight Dundee looked very much like a team from a higher division, and they put the hapless Rovers to the sword ruthlessly. There could have been a few more goals, but a four goal win over a Championship side is an excellent evening's work. Paul Hartley clearly has plenty of options now, and it was good to see two players coming in to make their debuts and acquitting themselves well. Roberts was a handful for the Rovers' defence, and Bain looked safe and composed. Apart from the occasional sloppy moment in defence this was a very good team performance from back to front. Rovers might have played poorly, but the Dundee players deserve great credit for dominating the visitors so effectively. Dundee FC 4-4-2 Bain McGinn, McPake, Konrad (McGowan, half time), Irvine Boyle, Davidson, McAlister (Harkins 66), Roberts Stewart, MacDonald (Tankulic 70) Unused subs: Letheren (gk), Carreiro, Kerr, Wighton Goals: Stewart (2), McGinn (42), MacDonald (58), Boyle (69) Booked: Davidson (foul on Nadé) Raith Rovers 4-4-2 Cuthbert Thomson, Perry (Ellis 83), Watson, McKeown Vaughan, Moon (Callachan 75), Scott, Conroy Stewart, Nadé (Anderson 56) Unused subs: Laidlaw (gk), Fox, Matthews, Bates Booked: Moon (foul on MacDonald), Thomson (foul on Roberts) Referee: Kevin Clancy Attendance: 2,645 Report: James Christie
  6. TheDarkBlues

    Dundee 0 - 0 Raith Rovers

    Dundee made only one change after the win at Livingston. Steven Doris came in for the injured Christian Nadé. The line-up might have been largely the same, but there was little resemblance to Saturday's commanding performance. Rovers settled more quickly and looked the more dangerous team throughout the first half. Carelessness plagued the Dark Blues and there were worrying early signs. Willie Dyer gave the ball away as he came out of defence; Grant Anderson ran clear down the right but his low cross was just ahead of his team mates. Dundee managed to get the first shot on target after quarter of an hour. Doris stabbed at Dyer's cross but goalkeeper Robinson took the ball comfortably. Greig Spence cut in from the left and hit a fierce shot from 30 yards that ex-Dee John Baird nearly managed to divert right in front of Kyle Letheren. The big Welsh keeper had to be at his best to keep the Dark Blues on level terms in the first half. He pulled off a superb save from Anderson's close range header after Cardle had jinked his way along the byline. Rovers' defence was disrupted when they lost centre back Watson to injury and he was replaced by Reece Donaldson at half time. However, the visitors still contained the Dark Blues' attacks comfortably for most of the second half. There was some improvement in Dundee's performance after half time, but it was still a long way short of the standard that the supporters were hoping for. Dundee's best move of the match came only a minute after the restart when MacDonald and Rae combined to send Boyle into the penalty area. The young striker cut inside Booth, but his low shot was well saved by Robinson. Dundee were at last showing more drive and were holding the ball better. The extra possession didn't turn into chances, and it merely served to curb Rovers' ambitions. The second half deteriorated into a dreary and disappointing slog, with neither side having the ability or confidence to take charge. With half an hour to play Paul Hartley sent on Ryan Conroy for Doris. Dundee reverted to the formation they played in the first few games under the new manager. MacDonald was on his own up front in the middle, with Boyle and Conroy on either side, and McAlister in the hole behind the striker. The change didn't provide any great improvement and the goalless draw always looked the most likely outcome. Nicky Riley replaced Boyle for the last 20 minutes. He offered some early threat, but the lack of effective support soon dragged him down into the prevailing mediocrity. Ryan Conroy did have a chance from a good cross by Dyer, but he headed wastefully wide. Rovers settled for the point long before the end and goalkeeper Robinson was booked for time-wasting. When they won a corner late in the match they tried to keep possession by the corner flag rather than attack the goal but simply lost the ball. That incident, and a corner at the other end, summed up the match. Jim McAlister had been one of the better performers, but his corner as the match entered injury time curled straight out of play. It was that sort of match. Dundee fans turned up tonight in good numbers for a midweek game. They were sadly disappointed by the performance that the Dark Blues served up. There was little penetration or invention, and hardly any effective use of the wide areas. This was a disappointing draw, but the Dark Blues didn't deserve any more, and they might easily have lost. It was hardly a good night, but a performance like this could have had a worse outcome, and probably would have done against more confident and aggressive opponents. Some goalless draws are entertaining and satisfying. This wasn't one of them; no goals, no entertainment and precious little football. It was such a disappointment after Saturday's excellent win. Dundee FC 4-4-2 Letheren Irvine, Gallagher, Benedictus, Dyer Boyle (Riley 69), Davidson, Rae, McAlister Doris (Conroy 60), MacDonald Unused subs: Twardzik (gk), Lockwood, Reid, Cummins, Wighton Booked: Dyer (foul on Anderson) Raith Rovers 4-4-2 Robinson Thomson, Watson (Donaldson half-time), Hill, Booth Anderson, Fox, Moon (Mullen 48), Cardle Spence (Smith 85), Baird Unused subs: Laidlaw (gk), Ellis, Vaughan, Matthews Booked: Moon (foul on McAlister), Cardle (dissent), Robinson (time-wasting) Attendance: 4,561 Referee: Stephen Finnie Report: James Christie
  7. TheDarkBlues

    Raith Rovers 0 - 2 Dundee

    Dundee's joy at the win, however, was tempered by the sad sight of keeper Kyle Letheren being taken off early in the second half after being knocked out. John Brown again made the minimum of changes to his starting line-up. Ryan Conroy kept his place efter replacing the injured Nicky Riley during Saturday's win against Dumbarton. The Dark Blues started confidently and the first half hour was played largely in the home half. Dundee's movement and passing was far better than Rovers. The home side struggled to get their forward players into the game. In contrast Peter MacDonald and Martin Boyle were buzzing menacingly around Rovers' defence. The first chance fell to Boyle, but keeper Ross Laidlaw saved well from his close range header after MacDonald headed on Gallagher's free kick. Rovers' defenders were often at full stretch keeping Dundee at bay, but they restricted the Dark Blues to just one more chance in the first half. Boyle flicked the ball on to release Ryan Conroy, whose low shot from the edge of the penalty area was saved by Laidlaw. Gradually Rovers worked their way into the match without posing any real threat to Kyle Letheren's goal. Gordon Smith took advantage of defensive hesitation on the edge of the penalty area to squeeze in a shot that Letheren was able to take comfortably. Dundee resumed after the break looking the more likely to score the opening goal, on a day when it seemed a single goal would be all that was needed to take the points. MacDonald headed wide from a Conroy free kick, but the real drama early in the half was at the other end. Kyle Letheren punched clear, but a sickening midair collision also involving Peter MacDonald and Reece Donaldson left the Welsh keeper prone on the turf, out for the count. After lengthy treatment he was led off and replaced by John Gibson. It was fully 10 minutes before Gibson had a chance to get a feel of the ball with his hands as the Dark Blues chased the win at the other end of the park. The Dee's prospects received a huge boost when Jason Thomson felled Boyle just outside the penalty area. He had already been booked, and Mr Robertson produced the inevitable yellow and red cards. Rovers took off Gordon Smith to send on central defender Laurie Ellis. Rovers rallied briefly, and a couple of promising attacks saw the ball flying around the Dundee goal without Gibson needing to make a save. The Dark Blues then took control and Rovers fell back to fight a rearguard battle for a point. Callum Booth made a mess of a Conroy cross, sending it straight to McAlister, whose fierce 15 yard shot was parried by Laidlaw. Boyle followed up, but his shot was cleared off the line by Dougie Hill. Dundee were piling forward, but couldn't force a goal from a series of set pieces and dangerous attacks. Rovers kept their nerves until the last minute of normal time when Declan Gallagher hit a steepling up and under into the penalty area. Laidlaw dropped the ball and Jim MCALISTER tapped the loose ball into the net to send the Dark Blues players and supporters wild with delight. There was still time for plenty of injury time excitement. Cardle's floated free kick was headed on by Ellis and Gibson had to block Hill's shot. Donaldson's shot was then deflected over the bar. From the corner Gibson did well to clear under the most intense pressure. Dundee broke at speed with substitute Craig Wighton racing over the half way line. The youngster timed his pass perfectly, sending MCALISTER clear to run through, dribble round the keeper and trigger more hysteria in the away stand when he stroked the ball home. John Gibson still had to earn his clean sheet with a good save from Elliot, pushing his angled header onto the post. This was a huge win for the Dee, who made it clear they badly wanted all the points and were not going to settle for a draw. It was a great team performance, which might not have hit the heights of style, but was full of hard running, good movement and above all passion! After the recent controversy over the support that the players have received there was no doubting the quality of the backing from the travelling Dees today. The supporters were right behind the team all through the match. They kept cheering the players on enthusiastically, and didn't get impatient as the clock would down. When the goals finally arrived, boy, did they enjoy them! Raith Rovers 4-4-2 Laidlaw Thomson, Hill, Donaldson, Booth Callachan (Anderson 87), Fox, Moon, Cardle Smith (Ellis 67), Elliot Unused subs: Stewart (gk), Vaughan, Matthews Booked: Thomson twice (fouls on Conroy and Boyle) Sent off: Thomson (two yellows) Dundee FC 4-4-2 Letheren (Gibson 58) Irvine, Gallagher, Benedictus, Lockwood McAlister, McBride, Rae, Conroy MacDonald, Boyle (Wighton 84) Unused subs; O'Donnell, Dyer, Monti, McIntosh, Kerr Goals: McAlister (89, 90+2) Booked: Benedictus (foul on Thomson), Irvine (foul on ELliot), Gallagher (persistent fouling) Attendance: 4,039 Referee: Don Robertson Report; James Christie
  8. TheDarkBlues

    Dundee 0 - 1 Raith Rovers

    The same 11 players who won so convincingly at Hamilton last week started today, but sadly they served up a repeat of the stuttering and nervous performance against Falkirk in the last home game. In that last game at Dens a mix up between Irvine and Letheren nearly cost Dundee a comical own goal. Today there was no escape. Thomson's charge forward from full back was ended by what looked like a foul by Gallagher. Referee Mr McLean allowed play to continue. That did the Dee no favours as Irvine turned the ball back towards Letheren who couldn't reach it, and the ball trickled embarrassingly into the net. Rovers eagerness gave them the edge in the early stages, and Anderson's knock down nearly gave Smith the chance to nip in on goal, but Letheren pounced on the ball. MacDonald and Wighton looked capable of getting through the Rovers' defence, but they didn't see enough of the ball on the ground. Far too often they had to challenge for optimistic long balls that played to the strengths of the Rovers' centre backs. A Conroy free kick drifted all the way through for a goal kick with both Gallagher and Davidson unable to turn the ball in. Wighton came close to grabbing an equaliser with a neat turn and shot. Laidlaw managed to touch the ball round the post, but the referee failed to give him the credit he deserved and awarded a goal kick. Peter MacDonald was involved in all of the few good moves that Dundee did manage to put together and had three good attempts at goal in the first half. He volleyed over from Rae's knock down, and hit two good shots from 20 yards that brought good saves from Laidlaw. Craig Wighton was withdrawn at half time and Martin Boyle came on. Dundee's game made it difficult for the youngster to get involved. When they tried to play through the middle they gave the ball away too often, and challenging for high long balls is not Wighton's strength. Boyle was quickly involved with an aggressive run down the left but Laidlaw dealt with comfortably with his angled shot. Dundee put the Raith defence under heavy pressure in the early stages of the second half, but there was an air of desperation about the Dark Blues' game; none of the attacks brought a clean shot on goal as the ball flashed around the penalty area. Eventually MacDonald did manage to get a shot in, again from distance, but Laidlaw tipped over superbly. Again the referee denied him the credit he deserved by giving a goal kick. At the other end a poor headed clearance by Gallagher fell to Smith who lashed the ball over the bar from 15 yards. Craig Beattie came on for Conroy with half an hour to go. Boyle moved to the right wing and Riley to the left. The change made little difference. Dundee were still going long and the wide players never received the ball in a position that allowed them to hurt the defence. Martin Boyle's best moment came with a blistering run from the half way line that took him through the defence, but his shot from 12 yards was weak and easily saved by Laidlaw. The longer the game went on the scrappier it became, which suited Raith well. They were happy to pick up easy possession from Dundee's mistakes, and always looked capable of grabbing a second on the break. The visitors looked more dangerous in the later stages as gaps opened up in the home defence. Cardle's chip seemed to be drifting under the bar, but Letheren made a fine save to touch the ball onto the bar and over. Elliot was then given far too much time to take Cardle's pass and run on to smash the ball againt the post. John Brown's final throw of the dice was to take off Lockwood and send on Carlo Monti after 82 minutes. It made no difference. There was no composure on the ball, no good passing moves, and no effective width. The only hope was that Rovers might slip up when another hopeful long ball came down the pitch. That never looked likely. Deep into injury time Gallagher headed on an Irvine long throw and Beattie shot wide. That was little more than a half chance, but it was the best Dundee could manage in that terribly disappointing last half hour. Raith would have been expecting a dangerous charge from the Dark Blues in the later stages, but the sad truth is that Dundee did far too little to worry them. Whether the long balls were deliberate, or a response to the inability of the midfield to hold the ball and threaten the Rovers' defence, the result was hard to watch. The strikers were isolated, the wide players ineffective and the Dark Blues punchless. Just like in the Falkirk game Dundee conceded a bizarre goal. However, again it was no more than the visitors deserved. Dundee did nothing today to deserve any luck and went out of the cup in very disappointing style. Dundee FC 4-4-2 Letheren Irvine, Gallagher, Davidson, Lockwood (Monti 82) Riley, McAlister, Rae, Conroy (Beattie 61) MacDonald, Wighton (Boyle 45) Unused subs; Twardzik, McBride, Doris, Thomson, Booked; Davidson (foul on Anderson) Raith Rovers 4-4-2 Laidlaw Thomson, Hill, Ellis, Booth Anderson (McCann 88), Moon, Callachan, Cardle Smith (Spence 68), Elliot Unused subs; Stewart (gk), Vaughan, Matthews, Bates Goals; Irvine o.g. (7) Booked; Hill (foul on Wighton), Booth (foul on Boyle), Laidlaw (time-wasting) Attendance; 3,184 Referee; Steven McLean Report; James Christie
  9. TheDarkBlues

    Dundee 2 - 0 Raith Rovers

    Ryan Conroy gave Dundee a first half lead with a 20 yard free kick and Craig Wighton headed the second shortly after half time. Raith's left back Callum Booth was sent off moments after Dundee's opener and Dundee were always in charge after that. Iain Davidson returned from injury and Kevin McBride dropped onto the bench, which meant that the defence was on more familiar lines. Craig Wighton came in for Craig Beattie and so the Dark Blues lined up with exactly the same team as in the last home game against Queen of the South. Dundee have been slow starters this season, but they didn't hang around today. In their second attack, still inside the first minute, the Dee should have taken the lead. Wighton took a pass from Riley swung over a great cross from the right. Peter MacDonald should have scored from six yards, but Raith's young keeper Ross Laidlaw pulled off a fine save. Rovers had a few promising attacks in the first 20 minutes, but their final balls were never good enough to create real danger in the home defence. Dundee didn't fashion any good chances in that spell, but their more measured approach always looked likely to pay dividends. The match took a huge swing in Dundee's favour just before the half hour. Ryan Conroy's 30 yard free kick was handled by Callum Booth in the defensive wall. The resulting second free kick was perfectly positioned for CONROY and his sweet shot swung over the wall and inside Laidlaw's left hand post. Little more than a minute after losing a goal Rovers lost a man. Left back Callum Booth had been booked for handling Conroy's first free kick. When he flattened Nicky Riley with a body check he received an inevitable second yellow card. Rovers removed striker Gordon Smith and sent on Kevin McCann to cover the left back spot. From then on Rovers had a mountain to climb. To their credit they made a tough fight of it. Callum Elliot flashed a cross shot wide, and then Liam Fox had a half chance when he tried to guide a long ball over Letheren, but his header sailed into the keeper's hands. Ryan Conroy came close to a second delightful goal from a 25 yard free kick, but this time the ball edged the wrong side of the post. Dundee were happy to pass the ball around patiently, keeping possession and waiting for the chance to break through Rovers' defence. Right at the end of the half a lengthy spell of passing ended with Riley curling a shot wide from 18 yards. Just like the first half Dundee flew at Rovers right from the kick off. This time they scored and the second goal left the visitors with an impossible task to save the game. The Dark Blues came agonisingly close to scoring in the first minute of the half. Neat passing opened up the Rovers' defence. Nicky Riley ran onto MacDonald's pass and lifted the ball over the keeper. It didn't have enough pace to cross the line and Watson beat Riley to the ball to clear it up into the air, and then head clear as the ball was dropping back down onto the goal line. The goal was delayed for only another minute. Ryan Conroy's cross from the left was half blocked by Thomson. Conroy reacted quickest, pounced on the loose ball and raced into the penalty area. His chipped cross picked out Craig WIGHTON, who headed back across the keeper from five yards to score his first senior goal, a goal that was met with a huge roar of delight from the home support who were desperate for the youngster to score. A good run down the left by Kevin Moon briefly offered danger at the home end, but Joe Cardle stabbed the ball wide under pressure. Dundee settled down to play an impressive, confident passing game. A lovely interchange between MacDonald and Riley on the left ended with Conroy heading Riley's cross over the bar. During the second half Dundee played a fast, penetrating passing game that was often a joy to watch. Young Wighton contributed impressively to some slick moves with his good touch and awareness. Callum Elliot went down dramatically when a Cardle free kick came into the Dundee penalty area, but the referee wasn't impressed. At the other end Peter MacDonald was pushed from behind when he was going for an Irvine cross, but again the referee chose to give the defence the benefit of the doubt. Dundee played on instead of wasting time appealing and Laidlaw saved well from McAlister. A great run by Riley on the left opened up the Rovers' defence, but McCann's last gasp challenge managed to nick the cross away from Conroy who seemed sure to score. Yet another long passing move ended with Laidlaw saving well from MacDonald's 18 yard shot. When the corner came over it was half cleared and Jim McAlister blasted a 20 yard shot just past the post. Nicky Riley was replaced by Martin Boyle for the later stages, a sensible precaution given that the winger had been booked. Kevin McBride also came on for the limping Matt Lockwood and played a comfortable 10 minutes in an unfamiliar left back role. Dundee should have added a third goal when clever passing by Conroy and Wighton set up MacDonald, but the shot was weak and Laidlaw saved easily. In injury time Dundee were happy to run the clock down and take the three points. Rovers have been doing very well this season, and this was only their second defeat in all competitions over 90 minutes, and their first in three months. This was an excellent win for the Dark Blues, who were both solid and creative. It wasn't spectacular, but it was a good professional win. There were some moments of delightful quality, and none of the careless mistakes that have marred recent games. Let's hope the Dee are back on track! Craig Wighton won the sponsor's man of the match award. It won't be the first time! Dundee FC 4-4-2 Letheren Irvine, Gallagher, Davidson, Lockwood (McBride 83) Riley (Boyle 76), McAlister, Rae, Conroy MacDonald (Beattie 89), Wighton Unused subs; Twardzik (gk), Thomson, Monti, Doris Goals; Conroy (27), Wighton (47) Booked; Davidson (foul on Elliot), Riley (foul on Anderson) Raith Rovers 4-4-2 Laidlaw Thomson, Watson, Ellis, Booth Anderson, Moon, Fox (Callachan 83), Cardle (Spence 71) Smith (McCann 33), Elliot Unused subs; Stewart (gk), Hill, Donaldson, Vaughan Booked; Booth (handball), Booth (foul on Riley), Thomson (foul on Riley), Cardle (simulation) Sent off; Booth (two bookings) Attendance; 5,064 Referee; Andrew Dallas Report; James Christie
  10. TheDarkBlues

    Raith Rovers 0 - 0 Dundee

    Injuries ruled out Iain Davidson and Kyle Benedictus, so Matt Lockwood and Willie Dyer came into a flat back four as John Brown switched to a 4-4-2 formation. Dundee settled quickly and most of the play was in Rovers' half. MacDonald and Monti were linking well but Dundee couldn't turn possession into chances. At least this was far better than the home side could offer. Rovers failed to mount a serious attack in the whole first half. MacDonald and McBride each had dangerous shots blocked, but neither keeper was called on to make a save until the second half. Rovers' defence looked far from convincing and centre back Watson was caught out when MacDonald took the ball off him and raced down the right. The supporting players didn't get forward quickly enough and no-one could reach the ball when MacDonald flashed his cross across the undefended goal. Rovers had two huge let offs late in the first half. Peter MacDonald cut in from the right and was about to shoot from 15 yards when he was body-checked by Watson. Astonishingly referee Mr Beaton decided that the Dundee striker had committed the foul. Two minutes later Declan Gallagher rose to power in a header into the net from a McAlister corner. Again Rovers got the benefit of the doubt. The referee disallowed the goal for pushing when it seemed as if Gallagher was just the strongest player attacking the corner. Rovers struggled all through the first half to deal with Dundee's corners. The Dee won eight in the first half alone and the home side were close to panic each time the ball McAlister whipped the ball in. Dundee went close twice from corners just after the disallowed goal. Gary Irvine headed wide with keeper McGurn nowhere near the ball and Peter MacDonald wastefully sent the ball over the bar from a free header. In the last minute of the half McAlister cut in from the right, played a one-two with Monti but saw his shot deflected past the post with McGurn already diving the wrong way. Rovers improved after half time and started to work the Dundee defence a bit harder. After 55 minutes they recorded their first shot when Anderson had room on the edge of box after a corner, but his shot was easily dealt with by Letheren. Raith perked up for a few minues and Letheren had to make another comfortable save from Vaughan after Moon's run from deep caused a moment of uncertainty in the Dundee defence. However, it was still Dundee who had the better chances in the second half. Gallagher lost his marker at the far post, but his powerful header from McAlister's free kick was brilliantly parried by McGurn. The ball broke back to Gallagher whose header was cleared off the line by Watson. Dundee then opened up the Rovers' defence with a fast break from defence. MacDonald and Conroy moved the ball at lightning pace through the middle to send substitute Steven Doris racing in on goal from the right. His shot flashed across goal and just past the far post, and Dundee's only clear chance in open play was gone. In the last 20 minutes the game opened up as both teams started to chase a win, but neither side could show the fluency or composure to pose a serious threat. Rovers had a couple of half chances; Moon found space to shoot from 20 yards but his shot was too weak to trouble Letheren. Smith turned the ball over from a corner when he should probably have got his shot on target. Martin Boyle replaced MacDonald for the last 15 minutes, and Jamie Reid replaced Conroy a few minutes from time. The changes didn't give the Dee any fresh impetus or real threat. The game might have been more open, but there were far too many mistakes from both sides to trouble the defences who were happy to clear their lines without fuss. This was a better performance from the Dark Blues, but they were still some distance from looking like a title wining side. A team with serious ambitions to win the Championship would have killed off Rovers in the first half when the home side were little better than inept. Dundee might have been well on top, but there was a worrying lack of pace and penetration, especially in the wide areas. Dundee looked more comfortable playing a 4-4-2 formation, but the supporters don't want to see a comfortable team. They want a hungry, dangerous team that always looks capable of grabbing a goal. Sadly we're still some way short of that. Raith Rovers 4-2-3-1 McGurn Thomson, Paul Watson, Hill, Booth Moon, Elliot Anderson, Vaughan, Cardle Smith Unused subs; Roberts (gk), Callachan, Donaldson, Ellis, Murray, Jamie Watson, Matthews Bookings; Elliot (dissent), Hill (foul on Doris), Booth (foul on Doris) Dundee FC 4-4-2 Letheren Irvine, Gallagher, Lockwood, Dyer McAlister, McBride, Rae, Conroy (Reid 87) Monti (Doris 60), MacDonald (Boyle 76) Unused subs; Twardzik (gk), Kerr, Carberry, Thomson Referee; John Beaton Attendance; 2,603 Report; James Christie
  11. TheDarkBlues

    Dundee 1 - 1 Raith Rovers

    Before kick-off there was a minute's applause to pay tribute to the late Willie Reilly, whose name appeared on the Dundee players' shirts. The Dark Blue supporters were cheered by the recovery from injury of Steven Milne and Carl Finnigan, who took their place in the starting line-up, with Bayne and Hyde dropping onto the bench. The optimism seemed justified when Dundee scored with their first serious attack. Finnigan swept the ball out to McCluskey on the right. He laid it back to Irvine whose quick cross was beautifully flighted for FINNIGAN to glance home a flying header from 12 yards. Rovers' defence was struggling against the neat interchanges from McCluskey and Irvine on the right. The visitors' midfield wasn't covering Dyer, the exposed left back. Rovers often lost shape when they attacked and left themselves vulnerable to the counter-attack. Frustratingly Dundee couldn't exploit Rovers' weaknesses again in the first half. Numerous opportunities to open up the defence were wasted when the last pass wasn't quite right or the wrong decision was made. Rovers meanwhile had plenty of the ball but barely threatened the Dundee goal. A match that still seemed to be going quite well for Dundee suddenly turned around in the space of a couple of minutes just before half time. Carl Finnigan fell awkwardly from an aerial challenge and it was immediately clear he was in trouble. Jake Hyde came on to replace him Apart from his goal Finnigan had been playing well. If his departure was a blow to Dundee things quickly got worse when they conceded a poorly defended goal. Baird had too much time to shift the ball out to Thomson in space on the right. The low cross found CASALINUOVO at the near post. He swiped and mishit it, but recovered quickly to squeeze the ball into the net off Douglas. The same player caused a moment of panic in the Dundee defence at the start of the second half when he forced his way round the outside of McGregor. His cutback caused a scramble and the ball came back to him, but he shot a couple of feet wide. Rovers had tightened up now and ensured that their midfield was covering the defence more effectively. Dundee were no longer able to find space so easily down the wings, and should have been rueing their failure to take advantage of Rovers' lack of organisation in the first half. Dundee's second half performance was as poor as they've played at Dens this season. The central midfield couldn't dominate their hard working opponents, the passing throughout the team was slow and too often sloppy. McCluskey had drifted out of the game after a bright first half hour, though the service to him had been poor. Barry Smith replaced him with Mark Fotheringham, who never looked comfortable playing wide on the right. Rovers might not have been playing particularly well, but their commitment and desire for a winner ensured an uncomfortable second half for the frustrated home fans. Fortunately for Dundee, Rovers lacked the quality to create chances and punish the sloppy home side. However, they managed to get the ball into the Dundee penalty area often enough to suggest they might eventually get a break. Dundee meanwhile offered even less at the other end. Hyde set up Fotheringham to cut inside and shoot, but McGurn turned the ball round the post. That was as near as Dundee came in the whole second half. Jonathan Stewart, the Hearts player who played for Dundee last season in their long unbeaten run, did manage to force the ball into Douglas's net, but had already been given offside. A well struck 20 yard shot from Murray flew wide near the end. There was little else to talk about. The game was mainly a matter of Dundee giving the ball away when they tried to attack, and Rovers charging forward eagerly, but with little subtlety or effectiveness. Apart from the soft equaliser the Dundee defence scraped pass marks today. They were let down by some poor passing out of defence, but they were no more guilty than the players in front of them who simply couldn't hold the ball and build sustained passing moves. In years to come this game will be remembered only for the tribute to Willie Reilly. Nothing else about today's game will linger in the memory much beyond the weekend. Dundee FC 4-4-2 Douglas Irvine, McKeown, McGregor, Lockwood McCluskey (Fotheringham 56), O'Donnell, McBride, Conroy Milne (Bayne 77), Finnigan (Hyde 42) Unused subs; Gibson (gk), Chisholm Goal; Finnigan (5) Raith Rovers 4-4-2 McGurn Thomson, Ellis (Stewart 76), Hill, Dyer Allan Walker, Murray, Davidson, Hamill Baird (Jamie Walker 83), Casalinuovo (Clarke 74) Unused subs; Laidlaw (gk), Williamson Goal; Casalinuovo (44) Attendance; 4,118 Referee; Willie Collum Report; James Christie
  12. TheDarkBlues

    Raith Rovers 0 - 1 Dundee

    Jake Hyde scored the only goal late in the first half to give Dundee their third 1-0 win over Raith this season. From then on the Dee were in charge, denying Rovers any chances and always looking capable of extending their lead. Rhys Weston, who limped off in the disappointing Boxing Day defeat against Morton, was replaced by Craig McKeown, but the other 10 players were given the chance to make amends. Dundee started brightly, looking dangerous, but the match soon settled into a dull and error ridden mess. Neither side were able to build dangerous attacks as the players struggled to handle the horrible conditions. Happily it was Dundee who got a grip of proceedings, and once they were in control they never allowed Rovers to trouble them. Just after the half hour Hyde headed wide after a good Riley run and cross. A few minutes later Dundee got the winning goal from a similar move. Chisholm and Rae made space in midfield. Rae swept the ball out to Riley, who crossed quickly. Jake HYDE beat his marker to the ball and scored from 10 yards with a neat header across the keeper and inside the post. Dundee put Rovers under pressure for the remainder of the half, but couldn't add to their lead. Raith manager, John McGlynn, tried to re-organise at half time to get his side back into the match. Ex Dee Pat Clarke, on loan from Dunfermline, came on to make his debut in place of Hearts' loan player Jamie Walker. Smith moved to the right wing, Hamill to the left, and Alan Walker into the central midfield. The end result of Rovers' reshuffle was precisely nothing as Dundee remained in control. The best move of the match saw the Dee sweep up the park through Chisholm and Milne, who played Conroy in to force a fine save from McGurn. Ryan Conroy had another chance after another flowing Dundee move, but again McGurn saved. Substitute Graham Bayne headed a Conroy cross over after a good move down the left. Meanwhile the Dundee defence was handling the Rovers' attack comfortably. The home side were entirely dependent on John Baird's tireless efforts to create a chance, but happily for Dundee he was forced to do his best work a long way from goal and never received good support when he moved nearer the penalty area. The nasty wind, that was gusting fiercely down the pitch from behind Douglas's goal looked far more likely to give Rovers a chance than their own efforts. There was the odd scramble around the penalty area, but for the most part the Dundee defence dealt admirably with the dreadful conditions. Dundee could have grabbed the second goal they deserved in injury time when Bayne's header from a corner was cleared off the line by Dyer, with the Dundee fans howling behind the goal for handball. The only real worry for Dundee in the closing stages was when Nicky Riley pulled up clutching his thigh and had to be replaced by Jamie McCluskey. This was exactly the sort of wretched Scottish winter's day when players need character and composure. Dundee had plenty of that today and fully deserved the points. The weather might have been thoroughly miserable, but the mood of the Dundee fans was positively sunny as they left the ground. Three points at a tricky venue is an excellent way to start the year. Raith Rovers 4-4-2 McGurn Donaldson, Murray, Hill (Dyer 9), Ellis Alan Walker (Holt 84), Davidson, Hamill, Jamie Walker (Clarke 45) Smith, Baird Unused substitutes; Roy (gk), Thomson Booked; Dyer (foul on Riley) Dundee FC 4-4-2 Douglas Irvine, McGregor, McKeown, Lockwood Riley (McCluskey 88), Chisholm, Rae, Conroy Hyde (Bayne 65), Milne Unused substitutes; Gibson (gk), Benedictus, McIntosh Goal; Hyde (37) Attendance; 3,629 Referee; David Somers Report; James Christie
  13. TheDarkBlues

    Dundee 1 - 0 Raith Rovers

    Dundee deservedly notched up their first home win after five frustrating and disappointing matches. Dundee dominated a toothless Rovers side but struggled to break down the visitors' defence and the match seemed to be drifting to a goalless draw until Conroy scrambled home Riley's cross. Sadly for Calum Elliot his debut for the Dee ended in sickening disappointment when he was stretchered off after being injured only 30 seconds into the match. Loan signing Elliot was the only change from last week's starting line-up. He replaced Steven Milne and Jake Hyde returned from injury to take a place on the bench, though he barely had time to sit down before he was getting ready to come on. Sadly for Elliot his debut couldn't have been shorter. Dyer caught him as he turned and he remained lying on the ground clutching his knee, with Dark Blue supporters fearing the worst. Sure enough that was the end of the Hearts' player's game. He tried to keep going but it was immediately clear that he couldn't run. Indeed Elliot had to be taken to the dressing room on a stretcher as Jake Hyde came on to replace him. As if that wasn't bad enough Rhys Weston hurt himself attacking a Dee corner. He never looked comfortable after that and was soon replaced by Craig McKeown. Rovers had their own problems and after half an hour lost centre back Laurie Ellis; the third player to hirple off with hardly a heavy tackle made. Apart from the injuries there was little to grab the attention in a quiet first half. As ever, Nicky Riley was an inventive threat on the right, but the Dee couldn't create clear chances in spite of some good pressure. The final ball was never good enough and the Rovers' central defenders had few problems. Raith offered even less threat to Douglas's goal and the only source of excitement for the fans was the usual referee baiting. Dundee perked up after half time, without looking truly convincing. Gary Irvine sneaked in at the far post to turn in Craig McKeown's flick from a free kick, but an offside flag cut the celebrations short. The longer the game went on the more cautious Rovers became as they focussed on securing the draw. The visitors failed to get men forward to support their strikers and Dundee were able to break up their attacks without much trouble and keep the pressure on Raith. The Dee tried to play a passing game, but it seldom worked smoothly and they had difficulty creating chances. They should have done better with the two that did come their way. Riley intercepted a dreadful pass from Williamson, raced into the penalty area and shot across the face of goal when he could have rolled the ball across for the onrushing McIntosh. McIntosh then sent Hyde clear. He rounded the keeper but shot high from a tight angle when he should have cut the ball back for McIntosh. Rovers may not have been looking dangerous, but the best chance of the game came their way after 73 minutes. The ball broke kindly for Williamson, leaving him a clear shot from 15 yards. Douglas blocked with his feet and the ball bounced off Irvine and into the arms of the relieved keeper. Jamie McCluskey came on for the last 20 minutes, replacing Jake Hyde who seemed to have picked up an injury. The substitute provided just the spark that Dundee needed, playing just behind McIntosh and unsettling Rovers with his determination to attack and to shun the safe option. Now Dundee had both Riley and McIntosh aggressively running at the Rovers' defence who were looking far less comfortable now. At last, after 82 minutes, the goal arrived. Riley knocked a long cross from deep on the right to the far post. Ryan CONROY sneaked in from the left unmarked but headed against a defender from close range. The loose ball fell at his feet, and he poked it through keeper McGurn's legs from only a few feet out. Raith came out of their shell, desperately chasing an equaliser, but the Dundee defence coped comfortably with all their efforts. Indeed, Dundee looked far more likely to get a second goal than to lose one. Nicky Riley had a great run down the left, and cut into the penalty area but his fierce goal-bound shot deflected off a defender. In injury time Gavin Rae released Conroy on the left. McGurn saved and O'Donnell's follow up was blocked. The roar and applause at the final whistle was more relief than elation. At last Dundee have got a victory at home! They've played better and lost during this poor spell, but today they didn't brood on their misfortunes. They kept their composure and concentration even when the ball wasn't running for them and deserved their win in the end. Apart from Williamson's chance the defence always looked in charge and thoroughly deserved their first clean sheet at home. Let's hope that the Dark Blues can build on this now, and start to give the supporters something to really cheer. For much of the second half it looked like it wouldn't be Dundee's day. The supporters didn't get on the backs of the players, who gave the patient fans their reward in the end. How good it felt to be leaving Dens Park again knowing that three points were in the bag! Dundee FC 4-4-2 Douglas Irvine, McGregor, Weston (McKeown 21), Lockwood Riley, Rae, O'Donnell, Conroy McIntosh, Elliot (Hyde 3, McCluskey 72) Unused subs; Gibson, Chisholm Goal; Conroy 83 Raith Rovers FC 4-4-2 McGurn Donaldson, Ellis (Prychynenko 30), Hill, Dyer Williamson (87 Reynolds), Murray, Walker, Hamill Baird, Graham Unused subs; Roy (gk), Thomson, Callachan Booked; Dyer (foul on Riley), Graham (blocking free kick), Prychynenko (foul on O'Donnell) Attendance; 4,258 Referee; Calum Murray Report; James Christie
  14. Our first guest to take part is Raith Rover fan and Terrace Podcast contributor, Andy Harrow. Dundee take on Raith Rovers at Starks Park this Tuesday in the Betfred Cup, KO 7:45pm .Read what Andy had to say! To kick off this new feature, as a lifelong Raith Rovers fan, what’s your first memories of supporting the club? The first game my Dad took me to was the 7-0 victory over St. Mirren on the opening match of the 1992/93 season, but the memory of my second game is more vivid – a 5-0 shellacking to Kilmarnock at Rugby Park in the Scottish Cup. Our goalkeeper got injured, which meant tough-tackling central midfielder, Davie Sinclair, spent the majority of the game between the sticks. He was utterly abject. To make matters worse, we had a man sent off and Bobby Williamson scored a hat-trick. Last season saw Rovers lose their Championship status in the play offs. Did you think the club would be fighting relegation last term? Not initially, no! We’d finished fourth the previous season and although the appointment of Gary Locke tempered expectations, we should have finished no worse than seventh with the bones of the same squad. After a promising start, our form fell off a cliff and we didn’t win a single game between November and February. By that stage, it was pretty clear we were in serious trouble. The appointment of John Hughes, with hindsight, did nothing to help slow our descent to League One and the play-off defeat to Brechin was as depressing as it was predictable. John Hughes left almost immediately after your relegation was confirmed and replaced with Barry Smith by a few weeks later. Were you happy with Smith’s appointment and what was the general view of the fans regarding it? If the reaction to Barry Smith’s appointment could be described in a single gesture, it would be a shrug. He’s not a particularly exciting appointment – he’s not an especially young manager and his recent track record isn’t stellar – but he showed at Dundee he’s capable of galvanising a squad and achieving success, so fans are willing to give him a chance. Plus, he’s neither Gary Locke nor John Hughes, so he’s immediately got that going for him. Understandably, there has been a good few coming and goings through the doors at Starks Park. Are you happy with the deals that have been done so far? The most surprising aspect this pre-season is how few new signings we’ve made. The two strikers we’ve brought in –Liam Buchanan and Ramsden’s Cup hero, Greig Spence – look astute transfers, given the number of goals they pilfered in League One last season, while our new centre half, Euan Murray, looks competent. Otherwise, the bulk of the squad from last season have signed on for a shot at redemption. It’s also a big season for our young players to prove themselves, especially Ross Callachan and Lewis Vaughan. Both have offered glimpses of their talent and, assuming we don’t loan either to a league rival in January, it’s a chance to prove they can deliver on a consistent basis. What’s the aim for Raith Rovers this season in the League? Promotion as champions. As one of only three full-time clubs (including a shambolic Airdrie), we should be near the top throughout, but our record in the playoffs (no wins, ever) means we need to secure top spot. I can’t see us staying full-time if we spend a second season in League One. How do you feel the new format of the Betfred League Cup has gone so far? I like it, actually. It gives each team a few juicy fixtures at the start of the season and last year’s version threw up quite a few surprises (as I’m sure you’ll remember…) As us Dundee fans know, it can throw up a few cup upsets. With Group B consisting of Dundee Raith, Dundee United, Cowdenbeath and Buckie Thistle, is their potential for a few shocks? Would Dundee losing to their city neighbours be an upset these days? Otherwise, Raith are probably best placed – we’ve improved as pre-season has progressed and beat Ross County on penalties in this competition last season. Buckie Thistle might beat Cowdenbeath, given how poor the Blue Brazil were last season. Can you name a player from each team that the opposition should be wary of? Dundee – it would be just the thing for Craig Wighton to deliver his best ever display at Stark’s Park. Otherwise, I’ve seen footage of the punch Randy Wolters packs, so I’d be a bit wary of him too. Dundee United – James Keatings once scored a hat-trick at Stark’s and should be a shrewd signing for United. Cowdenbeath – A Cowdenbeath-supporting friend has suggested Cammy Muirhead. He came through the Fife Academy and scored against Buckie. Buckie Thistle – I would be lying if I said I knew any of Buckie’s players. Who do you think will reach the final of the League Cup and eventually win the trophy? It’s hard to see past Celtic given their form last season and Hearts will be the ceremonial whipping boys in the final. How do you think Dundee will do in the League this season after struggling last term? Another season of bottom-six misery, I’m afraid. Hamilton will surely – surely! – be relegated in the automatic berth this season, but Dundee’s squad still looks relatively weak. Admittedly, Scott Allen seems a good signing and a few of the news guys are relative unknown quantities, so it might depend how useful they are.
  15. TheDarkBlues

    Raith Rovers V Dundee

    The Dark Blues new signing Sofian Moussa comes off the bench to open the scoring, before Hendry scored a dramatic late winner in injury time to secure all three points in the first round of the Betfred Cup. After all the excitement of the pre-season flurry of signings, Neil McCann's new look Dundee side didn't exactly hit the heather alight, in what was a pretty dull and lethargic game to start off with. However this changed in the last 10 minutes when both sides upped their game after tempers started to flare from both side and referee Stephen Finnie did as much as possible to keep the game from flowing along. Dundee lined up against Raith Rovers with seven new faces from last year. Manager McCann handed competitive debuts to five players, Hendry, Kamara, Deacon, Allan and Wolters in the starting eleven. While Spence and Moussa were both consigned to the bench for the start of the game. Raith Rovers Boss Barry Smith made just one change to the side that lost to Dundee United last Saturday, Yaw Osei came in for the injured Bobby Marr. The Rovers had a few familiar faces with ex-Dee Players Davidson and Benedictus at the heart of their defence. The Dark Blues played in their Red away strip and blue shorts and stockings. The match started on an immaculate Stark's Park Surface and the Dark Blues of Dundee seemed quite content in retaining possession for large parts of the first ten to fifteen minutes of the game, without really troubling Lennox in the Raith goal. Both sides were prone to slack passing and frequently gave the ball away and both teams could not find a way past either sides defence. Raith's keeper Lennox had to look sharp after Allan found Wolters who nearly caught the keeper out at his far post. In the 17th minute, Buchanan struck the ball from outside the Dundee box, and the ball deflects off Spence into the arms of Bain. A couple of minutes later, Buchanan who lays off Callachan, however his shot comes off a Dundee red Shirt. A minute later, a Thomson cross from the right finds Vaughan and his shot is palmed away from danger by Scott Bain. The game started to come alive in the 38th minute. Wolters made space for himself inside the box, his shot hit the crossbar from 16 yards and Lennox was left standing on his goal line watching ball. El Bahktaoui also had two chances in quick succession, his first was blocked by Davidson and the second was saved by Lennox. Spence was the first player of the day to end up in the ref's little book. He was judged to have dived in the box and referee Finnie booked him for simulation. The first half ended in a stalemate and there were no changes to either line ups when both teams came out for the second half. Right after the second half started, the ball broke to Deacon on the edge of the Raith box but his shot flew well over the top of the bar. Dundee had a massive let off a few minutes later when Buchanan and Vaughan played a 1 -2, but fortunately for The Dark Blues Buchanan sliced his shot wide of Bain's goal. Dundee made their first change of the second half when McGowan came on for O'Hara, and within a few minutes McGowan was complaining that he was hit in the head from a stray elbow, to which he had to receive treatment from the physio. After a lengthy pause in the game Allan then went on to waste a free-kick by nearly kicking it out Starks Park. Roarie Deacon got his first yellow card in a Dundee shirt after having a little spat with Murray, and then gave the ref no choice but to produce the yellow for a foul on Buchanan. Spence is denied a goal scoring opportunity when Kevin Holt puts in a fantastic last ditch tackle as Spence is about to shoot with only Bain to beat. However, Spence goes down easily in the box and Raith players and fans appeal for a penalty but the ref is not interested stating that Holt played the ball. Dundee make another substitution, controversial signing Moussa comes on for Wolters and nearly gets a goal within minutes of his debut. Cammy Kerr cross defects of McGowan and straight into the path of Moussa, however he can't get the ball from under his feet and Lennox comes in to smother. The deadlock was finally broken in the 83rd minute. An Allan free-kick in from the left found Moussa who controlled the ball with his back to the goal, turned and hit the ball high past Lennox in goal. Moussa was then booked for celebration in front of the away crowd. Raith Rovers equalised on the 90th minute through Vaughan who was unmarked at the edge of the penalty box, he struck from 12 yards and his shot flew past a helpless Bain. With the game almost to a close and looking like it would finish with penalties, Dundee struck in the 92nd minute to secure all three points. Allan played a short 1-2 corner with McGowan and Allan swung his cross high into the box and Hendry header past Lennox. The Dark blues get their first win of the season under Neil McCann. Dundee will now face highland opposition Buckie Thistle on Saturday at Dens Park.
  16. Dundee managed to get three points in what was a scrappy first game of the season. Moussa gets his first for the Dee in 83' after it was claimed there was a foul. Vaughan equalised for Raith in the 90th minute and El Bakhtaoui manged to grab three points in the dying seconds of the game. Raith Rovers 1 - 2 Dundee
  17. Dundee managed to secure the three points in the dying minutes and avoided a penalty shoot out in a hard fought game against a very determined Raith Rovers managed by former Dundee manager Barry Smith. The Dark Blues took the lead when new signing came off the bench and scored in the 83rd minute. Raith Rovers fought hard to get a point from the game and equalised on the 90th from a Lewis Vaughan volley that left Bain with no chance. The game looked to be heading to a dramatic penalty shoot-out and the Dens Park outfit secured all three points from Jack Hendry header. There was some confusion over who actually scored as Faissal El Bakhtaoui initially claimed the goal as his own. As for the game, McCann was quick to praise his players for their winning mentality and mindset after losing the goal to Raith Rover late on in the game. "It showed to me a lot of where their mind set is, I was very angry that we conceded a goal late on, but we have been working really hard in training this pre-season where there is always winners and there is always a prize if you win the training games. That mind set absolutely kicked in towards the end." The Dark Blues manager said that the players showed character in the first competitive game, McCann was also quick to state that he was unhappy with in general play "The pitch was dry, we were playing with two wide players and we weren't puncturing our passes enough, we weren't moving it quickly enough, but the most pleasing thing for me that it is a win and I don't care how we get there." McCann believes that the fans who travelled in large numbers "Great support, absolutely fantastic. I just feel that the maybe saw glimpses, they didn't see the finished article but that is something that we will work hard on in training" "It's the mentality of making sure that we get there and we do get the win and the team did that tonight and I am so happy for the them because if they had come away from here (without a win) it is not the best way to start off in a cup competition." Dundee can now move their focus to Saturday's game against highland league Buckie Thistle. "Come Saturday, we will have moved on and there will a lot of the boys vying for positions. We will need to look at the team, because these games will come around in quick succession, so that is when the strength and depth of the squad come in. It is really handy that you can bring in like for like."
  18. Who was your man of the match against Raith Rovers?
  19. UWTB1893

    League Cup Preview: Raith Rovers Vs Dundee

    Raith Rovers vs Dundee Venue: Starks Park Date: 18th July 2017 KO: 7.45PM Referee: Stephen Finnie Linesmen: Alastair Mather, Chris Phillips Match Facts: Dundee have only been beaten once from Raith in thirteen League Cup Games. Dundee have never been beaten at Starks Park in the League Cup. The clubs have only faced each another once out with the group stages. This happened in 2014 when Dundee beat Rovers 4-0 at Dens Park. Alan Gilzean once netted back-to-back hat-tricks against the Fifers. Both games occurred in August of 1960. Alan Gilzean is also the top goal scorer for Dundee in this competition against Raith. He has scored six in total. Head to Head League Cup Record Total Games: 13 Dundee wins: 10 Raith Rovers Wins: 1 Draw: 2 Dundee Goals: 34 Raith Rovers Goals: 8 Head to Head League Cup Record at Starks Park Total Games: 6 Dundee wins: 4 Raith Rovers Wins: 0 Draw: 2 Dundee Goals: 13 Raith Rovers Goals: 5 Last 5 League Cup games at both grounds: Won | Home | Round 2 | 4-0 | August 26th 2014 Drew | Away | Group 2 | 1-1 | August 22nd 1981 Lost | Home | Group 2 | 1-2 | August 8th 1981 Won | Away | Group 4 | 3-0 | August 27th 1960 Won | Home | Group 4 | 5-0 | August 13th 1960 Last 5 League Cup games at Starks Park: Drew | 1-1 | Group 2 | August 22nd 1981 Won | 3-0 | Group 4 | August 27th 1960 Drew | 2-2 | Group 1 | August 29th 1956 Won| 2-1 | Group 4 | August 23rd 1952 Won | 3-1 | Group 3 |September 1st 1951 Last League Cup Meeting Dundee 4-0 Raith Rovers Goals from Stewart, McGinn, MacDonald and Boyle gave Dundee an empathic 4-0 win over Rovers to book their place in the third round of the League Cup. After going in front so quickly, this tie was never in doubt for the newly promoted Dens side who would win comfortably. The teams that day were: Dundee: Bain, McGinn, Irvine, Davidson, Konrad, McPake, Roberts, McAlister, MacDonald, Stewart, Boyle. Substitutes: Letheren, McGowan, Tankulic, Carreiro, Harkins, Kerr, Wighton Raith: Cuthbert, Thomson, McKeown, Scott, Watson, Perry, Moon, Vaughan, Nade, Stewart, Conroy Substitutes: Fox, Anderson, Callachan, Laidlaw, Ellis, Matthews, Bates Attendance: 2,645 Match Updates You can also follow live updates on the Official Dundee Website and twitter page. http://www.dundeefc.co.uk/ https://twitter.com/dundeefconline?lang=en-gb @dundeefconline
  20. Dundee travel to play the first of their friendlies on home soil. Back from their 7 day trip to Hungry and their pre-season training camp. The mighty Darkblues hit the A92 and over into Kirkcaldy Fife. Be advised that there is roadworks currently on the A910 and this could cause you long delays. Remember boys and girls, this is just a friendly and nothing more than a warm up sessions and just enjoy the game without taking to much from it. Watch game on Raith Rover Live TV only available outside the UK/Ireland or listen to live commentary available anywhere. Single Pass to the game will cost £50 or a season pass will cost you £50 (if you feel generous towards Raith that is. ) Note: You must be a member to watch this game. Interesting to note that there will be a few familiar faces in the Raith team tomorrow. Lewis Toshney, Kyle Benedictus, Mark Stewart and Craig Wighton (If fit) Game Details Competition: Friendly Venue: Stark's Park Date: 15 Jul 2015 Kick Off: 19:45 ( 7:45 pm ). Pay At The Gate Prices Adults: £10 Seniors: £5 Under 16: £5 How to get to Starks Park Game Stats Last time we met Raith Rovers was in the League cup, back in August 2014. Dominant Dundee 'Eliminated' Raith (in their own words) that day with a comfortable 4- 0 win at Dens Park. Here is the match reports from both Dundee and Raith Rovers for that game.
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