Dundee United 3 Aberdeen 1
Mon 7th Mar 7.45pm
Attendance: B. Winter
Dundee United moved up to fifth in the table with a well-deserved 3-1 victory against Aberdeen at Tannadice. Barry Douglas and Craig Conway were both on target during the first-half before substitute Josh Magennis pulled a goal back shortly after the restart. However, any hopes of an Aberdeen recovery were soon shattered when Danny Swanson lashed home an emphatic third.
The Tangerines were beginning a frantic spell of five games inside the next fortnight and proved good value for their win as they also hit the woodwork twice and had a blatant penalty denied.
But it was the Dons who first went close when Zander Diamond powerfully headed Rob Milsom's corner and Dusan Pernis blocked superbly at his near post. Diamond suffered a facial injury in the process and left the pitch with blood pouring from around the bridge of his nose.
David Goodwillie soon drove across goal in his absence and when the defender returned he was fortunate not to receive a straight red card for a nasty challenge on Prince Buaben. But Diamond was soon off again to receive further treatment and the hosts took maximum advantage with Douglas heading in Conway's corner at the near post just before the half-hour.
With Rory McArdle now on for the visitors they almost fell further behind as Morgaro Gomis struck the near post before Conway seized upon David McNamee's weak header and despatched a swerving right-footed shot that badly deceived Jamie Langfield as he dived past the flight of the ball on its way into the net.
His opposite number Pernis then blocked well at his near post from Ryan Jack, while Swanson only narrowly missed with a dipping effort early in the second-half. But it was the visitors who hauled themselves back into the game when Douglas failed to clear the danger and allowed Scott Vernon to hook the ball across for Magennis to nod into an inviting goal.
Suddenly the outcome appeared in some doubt as Pernis again saved well following a fierce drive by Milson. But the Taysiders quickly rallied and Goodwillie struck the top of the near post with a tremendous overhead kick before delivering a glorious ball inside the area for Swanson to crash a brilliant left-footed half-volley into the far corner.
Substitute Magennis had made a genuine difference for the visitors and was once again thwarted by the impressive Pernis before Goodwillie was crudely taken down inside the area by Andrew Considine, but somehow the referee failed to recognise the offence.
Dundee United: Pernis, Watson, Dillon, van der Meulen, Douglas, Swanson (D. Robertson 70), S. Robertson, Gomis, Conway (Shala 54), Buaben, Goodwillie (Russell 88)
subs (unused): Banks, Smith, Kovacevic, Armstrong
Goals: Douglas (29), Conway (33), Swanson (60)
Aberdeen: Langfield, McNamee (Blackman 75), Diamond (McArdle 31), Considine, Smith, Hartley, Aluko (Magennis 46), Young, Jack, Milsom, Vernon
subs (unused): Howard, Vujadinovic, Pawlett, Paton
Goals: Magennis (51)
Ref: B. Winter