Dundee 1
Heart of Midlothian 1
League (Premier League)

1 - 1

League (Premier League)
Saturday, August 3rd, 2002
Dens Park
Attendance: 7,705
3:00 PM Kick-off

Fabian Caballero 
Gary Wales (33)

Team Managers
Jim Duffy
Craig Levein

Starting Eleven
12. Julian Speroni
6. Lee Wilkie
16. Jonay Hernández
2. Barry Smith
3. David Mackay
19. Lee Mair
8. Gavin Rae
10. Giorgi Nemsadze
7. Fabian Caballero
9. Juan Sara
17. Nacho Novo
Antti Niemi .1
Steven Pressley .4
Kevin McKenna .5
Austin McCann .18
Alan Maybury .2
Scott Severin .6
Stephen Simmons .16
Jean-Louis Valois .11
Andy Kirk .10
Gary Wales .15
Steven Boyack .12

1. Jamie Langfield
Marcello Marrocco
21. Steven Robb
14. Gavin Beith
15. Steven Milne
Roddy McKenzie .13
Liam Fox .31
Mark De Vries .9
Kevin Twaddle .7
Paul McMullan .37

None. Mark De Vries for Gary Wales (63)
Kevin Twaddle for Andy Kirk (73)
Paul McMullan for Jean-Louis Valois (83)

None. Steven Boyack (44)
Scott Severin (90)

Red Cards
None. None.
Match Officials

Dougie McDonald (Referee)
Neil Brand & Frank Cole (Assistants)
John Gilmour (Fourth Official)

Match Report

Most observers would have said that Dundee deserved more than a draw with the general feeling amongst the support being that they were pleased with the performance, but not completely with the result.

Nacho Novo, Jonay Hernandez and Lee Mair all made their league debuts in a Dark blue jersey emblazoned with the logo of jsearch.co.uk-the club's new main sponsor-for the first time.

After Dundee's bright start, it was very much against the run of play, when Kirk headed Boyack's free kick back across goal for Wales to nod the visitor's ahead from close range. Although knocked out of their stride, Dundee did have a golden opportunity to get on level terms before the break when Nemsadze picked out Sara, but Niemi did well to batter the shot behind for a corner.

However, there was a let off for the home side just after the interval when giant Canadian Kevin McKenna headed goalwards from Boyack's comer, only for Dave Mackay to clear off the line.

With Dundee getting back into the ascendancy, Novo appeared certain to score as he charged into the box, only to miss-kick his shot across goal, the loose ball fell invitingly for Juan Sara, but the striker could only look on in horror as the ball bounced off his shin and straight into the arms of Niemi.

The Dark Blues finally drew level twenty-five minutes from the end when Nemsadze threaded a gorgeous ball into the path of Caballero on the edge of the centre circle and the striker strode forward to finish with a wonderfully placed shot into the bottom corner for a goal of beautiful simplicity.

Had they not passed up a couple of more great opportunities, Dundee could, as they should have, won the match.

First, Sara turned brilliantly in the box and slid a left foot shot inches wide and then with the minutes ticking by, Fabian was in again but as he raced clear Maybury brilliantly closed down the striker who rushed his shot and it went wide.

There was a late scare as Wilkie was penalised for a foul on substitute De Vries 25 yards out, sending shivers through the home support. Was there going to be a late goal to bring that sinking feeling so often experienced over the last couple of years?

Thankfully not as the defence held firm, and the shot was charged down to visible relief all around Dens.

Match report written by Dundee Matchday Programme

Squad Statistics (as at August 3rd, 2002)

2002-03 All Time
Julian Speroni (GK)23 1 - 22 -
David Mackay21 1 - 191
Barry Smith28 1 - 2681
Jonay Hernández23 1 - 1 -
Lee Wilkie22 1 - 491
Lee Mair21 1 - 1 -
Giorgi Nemsadze30 1 - 533
Gavin Rae24 1 - 18518
Nacho Novo23 1 - 1 -
Juan Sara25 1 - 7130
Fabian Caballero24 115717

League Table (as at August 3rd, 2002)

No league table has been added for this season.

Manager's Programme Notes

The build up to the new season is over and this afternoon sees the real business of the SPL begin in earnest.

Looking back, we have had a very hard pre-season against some excellent teams. The three matches in Romania were against teams of very good standard and as those of you who saw our home friendlies against Preston and Rapid will vouch for, we again faced teams of a high calibre.

And because these were all extremely demanding games, they were ideal games for the players' fitness and sharpness that should stand us in good stead for the season ahead.

Personally speaking, I am really looking forward to the new campaign and feel that with a bit of the rub of the green that it can be a very successful one for Dundee Football Club.

Of course, there are many difficulties within the game due to the financial turmoil from which few clubs have been immune.

And certainly in this country it is going to mean far more home- reared youngsters being blooded at an earlier age than has been the case in the past.

This will almost certainly be the case right across the board in Scotland with the probable exception of the Old Firm.

In the long run, there can be little doubt this will be to the benefit of the game as a whole and see an improvement in Scottish football.

Inevitably this season, I anticipate relying more and more on our young players and therefore I would ask our fans to be patient with them.

They will need time to adjust to the rigours of the SPL and all I would ask of our fans is to give them the encouragement that they'll require.

Hearts, whom we welcome for the first fixture of the new season, are in very much the same boat as ourselves, having trimmed their playing staff, and so can be expected to have several new names in their line-up.

I'd therefore like to wish Craig Levein every success for the new season, but only after this afternoon's meeting. And to our supporters, I'd like to thank you for your continued support this season.