1 - 1
1 - 1
League (First Division)
Craig Brewster (23)
||Alan Mahood (65)|
Paddy Connolly for Neil Caldwell (66)
Paul Walker for Robbie Winters (85)
Paul Blair for Alan Mahood (85)
Derek Laing for Marko Rajamäki (88)
John Rowbotham (Kirkcaldy) (Referee)
Morton's message to United playing their first match out with the top flight of Scottish football for 35 years was "welcome to the First Division" as they gave us an early sample of how hard a task lies ahead of us this season. But given that the United line-up contained all five summer signings, there were some encouraging signs, particularly as five players were still suspended!
In the early stages United dominated and after six minutes a back-header from Craig Brewster drifted over the far post. A sustained spell of pressure by the men in tangerine brought no better than a David Hannah shot which was off-target. Morton had already demonstrated that they were to be no pushover and Finnish international Marko Rajamäki brought out a fine stop from Ally Maxwell. Immediately, though, United raced to the other end and Wylie was forced to tip over a Craig Brewster header.
The Morton goal remained under threat from successive corners and when they failed to clear the second properly the ball fell to Craig Brewster who had little difficulty in turning the ball home from eight yards when he was left unmarked at the far post. Chances were there to bury the visitors in the first half, most notably when Robbie Winters was clean through, only for Wylie to advance and block his route. Neil Caldwell was downed in the box, but no penalty was forthcoming. A decision which would surely have been reversed had the incident taken place outside the box!
The visitors reminded United that the game wasn't over when Lilley fired a free-kick less than a foot over as they came into the game for the first time as an attacking force. And they further confirmed their presence right on the interval when Ally Maxwell had to claw away a shot.
That new found confidence was carried into the second period, but it was Wylie who was called into action when he tipped a Robbie Winters shot over the bar in 53 minutes. Ten minutes later after Morton had most of the possession without threatening, Robbie Winters sent a header narrowly wide. A couple of minutes later Morton equalised with a goal which the attending Arthur Montford - the former Scotsport commentator and selfconfessed Morton fan - would no doubt have described as "SENSATIONAL!". Well, even we would have to concede that Alan Mahood's wondrous strike from thirty yards was quite good!
Suddenly, Morton looked the more likely team, but 14 minutes from the end, Craig Brewster played a great one-two with Paddy Connolly to prise open the otherwise resolute Cappielow defence, but Craig's blazed his finishing effort over the bar from a good position. That signalled an all-out assault on Wylie, but he blocked Rab Shannon's shot and then beat away Andy McLaren's angled drive. Despite this, a draw was a fair result from a game in which both sides had chances to win.
|Ally Maxwell (GK)||30||1||-||1||-|
|Paddy Connolly (sub)||25||1||-||135||35|
|Paul Walker (sub)||17||1||-||1||-|