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Dundee Celebrate Long-Awaited Derby Win Over United

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Dundee celebrated a long-awaited derby win by overcoming rivals Dundee United 3-1 in the Scottish Premiership at Dens Park.

The Dark Blues earned the bragging rights thanks to first-half goals from Greg Stewart and James McPake, before Paul Heffernan sealed matters towards the end for Paul Hartley's men. Nadir Ciftci briefly levelled with a penalty for the visitors.

It was Dundee's first win in a derby for more than 10 years and breathed further momentum into their push for a top-six place, as United's poor run of domestic form continued.

In front of a sell-out crowd, Dundee started well with midfielder Jim McAlister trying his luck early on with a 25-yard snap-shot on his left-foot which Radoslaw Cierzniak in the visitors goal held.

United's reply was a sweeping move involving Paul Dixon and Chris Erskine who, in turn, fed Ciftci - but his low shot was saved by Scott Bain.

However, Dundee broke the deadlock in the 14th minute through Stewart.

The home side's top scorer turned smartly and hit a shot from 22 yards which should have been dealt with by Cierzniak, but the Polish keeper allowed the ball to trickle through his hands and into the net, leaving him red-faced.

The lead, however, was short-lived as United levelled two minutes later.

    GALLERY: The best pictures from the Dundee derby

Chris Erksine's powerful shot came off the hand off Dark Blues skipper Kevin Thomson's hand, and referee John Beaton pointed straight to the spot. Up stepped Ciftci to send Bain the wrong way and square things up.

However, Dundee regained the lead in the 23rd minute when Stewart's corner was met by McPake, who rose above Jaroslaw Fojut head past Cierzniak from six yards.

As the half-hour mark approached, United came close to equalising when Aidan Connolly jinked in from the left before unleashing a venomous shot which Bain was relieved to see clear his crossbar.

The Tangerines were desperate for an equaliser before the break and in the 35th minute Dixon's whipped cross was met by Connolly - but his left-foot effort went wide.

United attempted to step up a gear and John Rankin's 56th-minute shot was deflected just wide by Stewart for a corner.

At the other end, Dundee's Paul McGowan released Paul McGinn down the right and his cross picked out Heffernan - but the striker mishit the shot and the chance was not taken.

However, Heffernan was not to be denied and the Irish ace killed the contest midway through the second half.

Skipper Thomson sent Stewart clear on the left and his cross was perfect for Heffernan to calmly knock home at the far post.

McGowan almost made it 4-1with 10 minutes of the contest remaining, only for Cierzniak to defy him with a fingertip save from his header.

However, the hard work had already been done by the hosts - who were by far the better team on the night.

Source: The Evening Telegraph

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