After the International Break last weekend, we now get back to League business with the visit of Kilmarnock to Dens Park.
There’s no denying that if it wasn’t for how poor Dundee United were last season, we would not be in the same division as Killie and despite mass changes in their personal, there is no incline to believe they have improved.
Looking at their squad this year, Lee Clark seems to be going down the youth route with a big bulk of their team aged between 19-22 years old. Everyone wants to see their club give youth a chance to shine but are Killie maybe overdoing it? Time will only tell.
They have managed two impressive results though. Firstly, a win away to Hamilton and a draw at home to Rangers while playing with 10 men. Of course they were lucky to get anything from these two games but none the less, they earned them.
We hopefully welcome new signing Tom Hateley into the squad for this match. A player of his ability is more than welcome into our team and I feel he will vastly improve the starting XI, either in defence of midfield.
I was more than a little surprised that we managed to capture him. He had a good few offers on the table which offered more money than we could afford. I think this speaks volumes about how well the gaffer is selling what he is doing and wants to achieve at the club.
Kevin Gomis will make his home debut no doubt and after missing the Motherwell game, I’m looking forward to seeing the big centre half in action.
I also hope to see Craig Wighton back in the squad and maybe the starting line-up for this. After being out injured for a few weeks, he made his comeback in the 3-0 victory over Dundee United in the Wee Derby on Tuesday. He looked sharp, eager and assisted with our third goal with an absolute peach of a pass right through the United defence.
We could also see Nicky Low mark his return from long term injury by making the bench on Saturday.
One player that will be looking forward to this game will be inform Mark O’Hara. We of course snapped him up for nothing from Killie in the summer after he was deemed to be surplus to their requirements. O’Hara will be wanting to continue his recent form for us by putting one over his old team.
I’m fairly confident we will grab all three points here (famous last words) and my prediction is a 2-0 victory for the Dee.
LAST GAME AT DENS PARK
Our last fixture against Kilmarnock at Dens Park ended in a 1-1 draw and severely hampered what hopes we had of finishing 7th in the league.
Dundee would dominate the first half of the game and a Rory Loy goal deservedly put the Dark Blues in the lead. Loy would have another chance near the end of the half to double our lead but a heavy touch from him saw the ball end up into the goalkeeper’s hands.
Killie nearly did pull a goal back in the opening half when a Nick Ross pass back looked be heading into the back of the net but Scott Bain was able to get across his line to clear.
The away side did manage though to level the scores when Balatoni headed home from a set piece much to the dismay of the fans.
Dundee would then push for the winner but despite chances falling to O’Dea, who had the ball cleared of the line, Arturo and Loy again, we could not get that crucial winner.
This result meant that we would battle it out with Inverness Caley Thistle up in the highlands on the last day of the season to see who would finish at the top of the bottom 6. Honestly, it makes more sense than it sounds.
Bain, McGinn, Etxabeguren, O’Dea, Holt, Ross, Colquhoun, Wighton, Stewart, Loy, Hemmings (Artuo 68)
Meggatt, Mitchell, Arturo, Black, Gadzhalov, Curran
MacDonald, Addison, Findlay (O’Hara 35), Balatoni, Hodson, Dicker, Faubert (Slater 45), Magennis, Frizzell, Kiltie, Boyd
Henshall, Brennan, O’Hara, Obadeyi, Slater, Taylor, Whittaker
Recent Record vs Kilmarnock
Last 5 games at Dens Park: DLWDL
Last 5 games at both grounds: DDLWW
Head to Head League Record
Total Games: 178
Dundee wins: 67
Kilmarnock Wins: 63
Dundee Goals: 270
Kilmarnock Goals: 247
Head to Head League Record at Dens Park
Total Games: 91
Dundee wins: 48
Kilmarnock Wins: 19
Dundee Goals: 171
Kilmarnock Goals: 147
Dundee’s biggest ever win against Kilmarnock was at Dens Park on the 12th November 1927. Dundee won 7-0.
The Dee’s once went 23 and a half years without defeat against Kilmarnock at Dens Park. This run happened from 8th October 1966 to 26th April 1980. During this period, we P16 W11 D5.
Nacho Novo is the only Dundee player to score in 4 consecutive league games in this fixture. He achieved this in the 2003/04 season.
Dundee legend Jocky Scott holds the record for most goals scored vs Killie. He scored 7 in the League and 4 in the League Cup for a total of 11 goals.
Both teams have struggled down the years at each another’s grounds in the League, only tasting victory 19 times each away from home.
” It was like watching Brazil ” one reporter wildly explained after witnessing Dundee destroy Kilmarnock on the opening day of last season.
The whole team were firing from all cylinders. Stewart was picking up where he left off from the season before, Harkins was pulling the strings in midfield and Rory Loy was marking his Dundee debut with a double. It was an absolute delight to watch.
The team that day was:
Bain, McGinn, Konrad, Etxabeguren, Holt, Ross, Harkins, Thomson, Stewart, Hemmings, Loy
Irvine, Meggatt, Ferry, Mitchell, Roberts, McGowan, Kerr