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Dundee United 1 - 1 Aberdeen

HT Score: Dundee United 1 - 1 Aberdeen

Dundee United scorers: Hamilton 38 (pen)
Aberdeen scorers: McGuire 28 (Pen).

30/11/2002 | KO: 15:00

Dons steal Tannadice point

Aberdeen escaped from Tannadice with a point after an horrendous second half performance. After taking the lead from the spot in the first half the Dons felt aggrieved when United were awarded a soft penalty kick ten minutes later. They can have no complaints of the final outcome however as they failed to threaten the United goal at all in the second period. At the end of the day they were happy to hear the final whistle and take the point back up the A90 after David Preece produced a terrific finger tip save in the final minute.

Aberdeen kicked off in the heavy rain and carved out the first opening of the game in the 4th minute. Michie was upended 30 yards out and Deloumeaux flighted in a free kick which McGuire met. His header however was easily held by Gallacher and a minute later a dangerous Rutkiewicz cross was missed by the Dons front men allowing the home side to clear. D'Jaffo had a sniff of goal in the 10th minute as he tried to latch on to a Deloumeaux cross, but the assistant referee's flag halted him.

Clear cut chances were few and far between, but both defences were coping with everything that was thrown at them. Deloumeaux should have opened the scoring in the 18th minute, but his lack of match practice showed when he mis-kicked a Derek Young pass with only the keeper to beat. A minute later Mackie scooped the ball over the bar as he and McGuire collided inside the United area.

United had a chance in the 22nd minute when they were awarded a free kick 25 yards out after an innocuous challenge on Miller. The ex-Ranger took the kick, but Preece easily saved the effort. A minute later Hamilton headed over from the edge of the box. The Dons finally took the lead in the 28th minute from the penalty spot. Michie was pulled back by Lauchlan and after a short delay, as keeper Gallacher tried to psyche out McGuire, the centre back drilled the ball into the corner of the net. United thought they had levelled two minutes later when Hamilton netted, but the goal was chalked off.

Michie collected the first yellow card of the match in the 36th minute and United went close when the subsequent free kick was headed goalwards by Hamilton. Preece saved well, but two minutes later United were level when they were awarded a very soft penalty as Anderson was adjudged to have fouled inside the box. Hamilton didn't complain as he sent Preece the wrong way for an undeserved equaliser.

Anderson had a chance to exact revenge in the 40th minute, but his header went inches over the bar. A minute later Derek Young tried his luck, but his effort was weak. A minute before the break Derek Young was stretchered off after a challenge from Miller. The referee brought proceedings to a halt immediately. On the restart Miller showed a very unsporting side to his game which angered the Dons players. Young was able to resume after treatment but failed to return after the interval.

Scott Muirhead took Young's place and the youngster made an immediate impact with a couple of forceful runs down the left. One such venture created a half chance for Darren Young, but Gallacher saved easily. United were having the better of the early exchanges and Anderson was fortunate to stay on the park in the 56th minute following a blatant trip. The referee decided he wasn't the last man and settled for a yellow. The subsequent free kick was cleared easily.

United were in complete control now as the Dons had to deal with a United onslaught. Although some dangerous free kicks were conceded around their penalty area, the back four were coping well. Skovdahl decided to introduce Billio and Mike for Michie and D'Jaffo to try and change the pattern of play. The Dons didn't have the fluency of the first period and seemed to be second to every ball.

Aberdeen almost handed United the winner in the 80th minute when Preece and Deloumeaux took too long at a free kick and the award went the other way. The effort was eventually headed inches over the cross bar as the Dons struggled to get into the match. The bombardment continued and McIntyre went close in the 83rd minute with a header from another Miller free kick. At this stage most fans would have taken the draw as Aberdeen were getting nowhere near the United goal never mind threaten it. In the final minute Aberdeen had David Preece to thank for the point when he produced a tremendous finger tip save from a Craig Easton drive.

Dundee United Teamsheet
Gallacher, Lauchlan, McCracken, Lilley, Easton, Miller, McIntyre, Wilson, Thompson, Hamilton, Paterson. Unused Subs: Combe, Cummings, O'Donnell, Carson, Duff

Bookings:  Lauchlan 28
Aberdeen Teamsheet
Preece, Rutkiewicz, Deloumeaux, McGuire, Anderson, Young, Tiernan, Young (Muirhead 46), Michie (Billio 62), Mackie, D'Jaffo (Mike 67).

Unused Subs: Payne, Esson.

Bookings:  Michie (36),  Anderson (56).
Attendance: 8,261
Venue: Tannadice Park, Dundee
Referee: Willie Young