Dundee 0
St Mirren 1
League (First Division)

0 - 1
St Mirren 

League (First Division)
Saturday, November 2nd, 1996
Dens Park
Attendance: 2,631
3:00 PM Kick-off

None. Mark Yardley (76)

Team Managers
Jim Duffy

Starting Eleven
1. Billy Thomson
2. Barry Smith
3. Robbie Raeside
4. David Winnie
5. Craig Tully
6. Dariusz Adamczuk
7. Mark Ward
8. Iain Anderson
9. Kevin Magee
10. Paul Tosh
11. Jim Hamilton

12. Ray Farningham
14. Iain Ferguson
15. Kevin Bain

Ray Farningham for Mark Ward
Iain Ferguson for Dariusz Adamczuk (80)

Robbie Raeside
Dariusz Adamczuk
David Winnie
Paul Fenwick

Red Cards
None. None.
Match Officials

Alan Freeland (Aberdeen) (Referee)
M. A. Clark (Edinburgh) & B. Christie (Aberdeen) (Assistants)

Match Report

Mark Yardley smashed a huge dent into Dundee's title hopes with a goalden header which was enough to knock Jim Duffy's men off top spot. The big striker got on the end of a Junior Mendes cross 14 minutes from time and there was no way back for the dismal Dens flops.

But defiant defender Barry Smith, who was a standout, reckons the Dark Blues have still got what it takes to clinch a spot in the Premier League. And he warned: "We'll just look on this as a setback. The conditions were bad and it made it difficult for both sides to play football.

"It was just a bit of an off day for the guys up front but we can't put all the blame on them. We're still creating lots of chances which is the main thing."

Victory was no more than battling Saints deserved and throws Tony Fitzpatrick's men into the fringe of the promotion race.

Delighted Fitz beamed: "We keep talking about the young players we've got here and they showed how good they REALLY are - especially in the second-half.

"I thought Jim Dick was excel lent and he put a lot of hard work into the game.

"It's very important we keep players like Ricky Gillies at the club because he's very special.

"And I thought Yardley was different class alongside him today. He's brave and goes in places where he's going to get hurt but he did well to direct his header on target."

Dundee must be cursing those missed chances. Yet they almost made a dream start as Kevin Magee really put the wind up Saints.

The youngster fired over a far post cross which was caught by the wind and rattled back off the post before being cleared upfield.

Jim Hamilton missed a glorious first-half chance when he fired into the side netting.

But, as Saints grew in confidence, Brian Hetherston and Barry McLaughlin both forced saves out of Billy Thomson.

Dundee stepped up a gear after the break and Paul Tosh forced Alan Combe to pull off a stunning save with a fierce volley from just inside the box.

Tosh then released Dariusz Adamczuk on the right and the midfielder sent over a high cross but Hamilton couldn't direct his header on target.

But Dens Park was stunned after 76 minutes when Saints broke the deadlock through Yardley.

Man mountain Yardley beat Thomson to Mendes' cross and headed home.

Dundee threw every thing forward in search of the equaliser, Iain Ferguson replacing Adamczuk in 80 minutes.

And Fergie almost paid instant dividends when he crashed a close range shot off the bar.

Brassed off Dens gaffer Duffy moaned: "I thought we played some good foot ball and we had four or five good chances but we were punished for one mistake."

Ref Alan Freeland booked SIX players - Saints Dick, Paul Fenwick and Hetherston along with Dundee's Robert Raeside, David Winney and Adamczuk.

Squad Statistics (as at November 2nd, 1996)

1996-97 All Time
Billy Thomson (GK)38 18 - 18 -
Robbie Raeside24 193193
Barry Smith22 18 - 39 -
Craig Tully20 6 - 11 -
David Winnie30 12 - 12 -
Dariusz Adamczuk27 161402
Iain Anderson19 15 - 534
Kevin Magee25 151151
Mark Ward34 1 - 1 -
Jim Hamilton20 1669238
Paul Tosh23 16411824
Ray Farningham (sub)35 1219810
Iain Ferguson (sub)34 11116059

League Table (as at November 2nd, 1996)

No league table has been added for this season.

Manager's Programme Notes

Results and performances have been mixed since I last communicated to you through this column.

Indeed, the most disappointing performance of the three recent games was in our last home game against Partick Thistle.

All round we disappointed and defensive lapses cost us the game.

Notwithstanding that set back, we approached the Coca-Cola Cup in positive mood, but the loss of two sloppy goals, ultimately proved too great a hurdle

The players deserve great credit for the way they played after the break, but the loss of those two goals in a crazy ten minute first half spell was our undoing.

Other than that I felt that we matched Hearts and the scoreline rather flattered them. As I have already mentioned in the media, the players were unable to return to the field at the end of the game to acknowledge the wonderful support we received at Tynecastle.

Despite the expense of the midweek trip through to Edinburgh, around 5,500 of you travelled and I would just like to record my, and the player's, appreciation of your tremendous support. The only regret is that we were unable to reward our fans with a second successive appearance in the final.

What did please me though was that we were able to immediately put the disappointment of the Coca-Cola Cup exit behind us and pick up a point away to Morton.

Cappielow is never an easy place to visit, but I thought we got back to what we have become good at this season BEING HARD TO BEAT.

We, arguably, had the two best chances of the match and although we dropped two points, it was a solid performance and we still remain at the top of what is proving a very tight division this season.

Perhaps most heartening aspect of the recent games has been the displays by two of the younger players. Craig Tully and lan Anderson have both done well and their emergence puts pressure on the others and can only strengthen our first team squad.

Anyone who thinks that we are on an easy wicket this afternoon against St Mirren after their 4-0 defeat at Perth last week had better think again. Saints were very unfortunate to sustain a defeat of such magnitude and Tony Fitzpatrick will no doubt have his young side fired up and ready to play for him as they did last week despite that reversal.

We are still not firing on all cylinders, but today I hope the players get back into gear and let their football do the talking where it matters - ON THE PARK.