Dundee Utd 1
Morton 1
League (Premier Division)

Dundee Utd
1 - 1

League (Premier Division)
Saturday, February 26th, 1983
Tannadice Park. Att. 5,986
3:00 PM Kick-off

Richard Gough (57)
Roddy Hutchison (81)

Team Managers
Jim McLean
Benny Rooney

Starting Eleven
1. Hamish McAlpine
2. Derek Stark
3. Maurice Malpas
4. Richard Gough
5. Paul Hegarty
6. Dave Narey
7. Eamonn Bannon
8. Ralph Milne
9. John Holt
10. Paul Sturrock
11. Davie Dodds
Roy Baines .1
Martin Doak .2
Jim Holmes .3
Jim Rooney .4
Joe McLaughlin .5
Jim Duffy .6
Graeme Payne .7
Roddy Hutchison .8
Danny Docherty .9
John McNeil .10
Bobby Houston .11

12. Billy Kirkwood
14. John Reilly
Eddie Gavigan .12
Bernie Slavin .14

John Reilly for Eamonn Bannon (55)
Billy Kirkwood for John Holt (72)
Eddie Gavigan for Bobby Houston (75)

None. Jim Duffy (22)

Red Cards
None. Jim Duffy (47)
Match Officials

Jim Duncan (Gorebridge) (Referee)

Match Report

Having not played a competitive match for two weeks - with last weekends vital rearranged match versus Celtic being postponed due to a frozen pitch at Parkhead - United went into this match with two changes from their win over Kilmarnock a fortnight ago.

Derek Stark came back in for Iain Phillip, and Ralph Milne came in for Billy Kirkwood. Relegation threatened Morton had two familiar faces in their line-up, with long serving midfielder Graeme Payne out on loan at Greenock, and John McNeil, who spent a month with United as part of that loan deal, now back in the Morton team. The first half was a bit of a non event. Neither side was able to fashion a opening and the match became somewhat of a midfield battle.

The second half perked up a bit and both sides looked more interested in finding a way to goal. Richard Gough put United ahead in 56 minutes but a fighting Morton eleven equalised through Bobby Hutchinson nine minutes from time. The Terrors were now five points adrift of Aberdeen at the top, with one game in hand. However that extra game was the twice postponed clash with second placed Celtic in Glasgow. The result was a set-back in United's push for the title.

Squad Statistics (as at February 26th, 1983)

1982-83 All Time
Hamish McAlpine (GK)35 40 - 5653
Dave Narey26 41843733
Derek Stark24 37 - 1923
John Holt26 26322319
Maurice Malpas20 372622
Paul Hegarty28 41339056
Richard Gough20 404896
Eamonn Bannon24 29817547
Ralph Milne21 361414541
Davie Dodds24 412121688
Paul Sturrock26 3412363114
Billy Kirkwood (sub)24 38725954
John Reilly (sub)20 176328

League Table (as at February 26th, 1983)

Pld W D L +/- Pts
1. Aberdeen 25 18 4 3 +37 40
2. Celtic 24 18 3 3 +37 39
3. DUNDEE UTD 24 14 7 3 +34 35
4. Rangers 24 7 10 7 +7 24
5. Hibernian 25 5 11 9 -10 21
6. Dundee 24 6 8 10 -4 20
7. St Mirren 24 5 9 10 -12 19
8. Motherwell 24 8 2 14 -23 18
9. Morton 25 4 8 13 -24 16
10. Kilmarnock 25 2 8 15 -42 12

League results since United's last match
22nd February 1983
26th February 1983
Dundee Utd1-1Morton
St Mirren1-0Rangers

Manager's Programme Notes

One of last weekend's national Sunday newspapers carried a report that the only reason our top players are stilt at Tannadice is due to a lack of cash in the transfer market South of the Border. Comments of that nature are an insult to what we have been trying to achieve at the club. Firstly the directors hava made it club policy to retain our top players. That policy was formulated before I became a member of the board and I am grateful to them because they ignored my advice ! In recent years bids totalling well over £1,000,000 have been made for three of our top players. The directors, fortunately, over-ruled my recommendations for acceptance. The second reason I resent last weekend's Press comment is that you, the fans, have played your part. The continuing growing volume of support has gone a long way to substantiating the directors decision to hold on to our playing assets. The transfer market may be in recession but I could guarantee offers for several of our players merely by lifting the telephone. When quality players are concerned, cash will always be available, and make no mistake that is exactly what we have at Tannadice. I have to confess my own thoughts on this matter were wrong in the past and the directors were right but now I have joined their club I am hopeful that the club's top players will continue to display their skills in United's colours for a long time to come. No doubt, like many of you, I felt peeved at having only academic interest in last week's televised cup draw. It is some time since we have been eliminated from a cup competition at such an early stage, circumstances I trust that will not be repeated in the near future.

Last Saturday we took advantage of a blank fixture date by playing our old friends West Ham. The match, I felt, proved me right concerning the tackle from behind. Both our meetings with the Hammers this season gave the paying public full value for money. In each case, freed from the threat of the dreaded tackle from behind, both sides have played flowing end-to-end football and consequently produced first class entertainment. After today's match with Morton our thoughts will turn to next Wednesday's U.E.F.A. tie with Bohemians. During the week I watched our Czech opponents beat their city rivals Slavia Prague 2-1 and whilst conditions made it difficult to make a proper assessment they have more than their share of talented players and could be the best side we have meet in the competition so far. Incidentally, a word of warning to all those intending travelling to Prague, the temperature there was minus 10, so remember to pack gloves, hats, scarves, extra jumpers and thermal underwear if possessed.