United left Easter Road with a single point thanks to a second half header from William Edjenguele. United went behind thanks to a Keatings shot in the first half but improved after the break and in the end left Edinburgh with a deserved share of the spoils.
By Gareth Scott
Ray McKinnon made just the one change to the line up that started against Morton last Saturday. It was a tactical change with Scott Fraser replacing Cammy Smith who dropped to the bench. Murdoch and Flood again missed out but Charlie Telfer was fit enough to be amongst the substitutes.
There was an early let off for United in the third minute when after a foul from Fraser, James Keatings struck the outside of the post directly from the resulting free kick. There was plenty of passing in the midfield area of the park but neither side were creating much. In fact it took until the 22nd minute when Hibs went close again. McGinn broke down the right and his cross found Forster who shot wide of target. United began to pose more of a threat going forward and Toshney found himself in a great position on the right but his low cross into the six yard box was collected by Marciano. Fraser then did superbly in the middle of the park for United and his pass found Murray who cut inside and shot straight at the Hibs goalkeeper. With 34 minutes gone the hosts took the lead. Shinnie collected the ball at the edge of the United area and he played the ball into Keatings who fired low past Bell. Five minutes later United went close when Fraser crossed to the back post. Van der Velden controlled the ball on his chest and his shot was deflected into the side netting. Van der Velden was then almost made to pay for a slack pass that was intercepted by McGeouch who powered forward and sent in a low shot that Bell did well to save.
Almost from the kick off Hibs posed a threat when Cummings unleashed a shot that just missed the target. United then responded when Fraser’s free kick was headed just wide by Murray. The hosts then had a great chance to extend their lead when Hanlon broke into the United box but fortunately for the visitors he dragged his effort wide. The home side were looking far more threatening and twice they had further attempts at the United goal from McGregor and then McGeouch. By the 65th minute United had used all three of their substitutes and it was one of them, Tope Obadeyi, who won the corner that resulted in United getting back into the game. Scott Fraser’s out swinging cross from the right found the head of William Edjenguele who powered his effort into the top corner of the net. United were now looking livelier on the left hand side and twice Obadeyi hit the byline and sent in dangerous crosses that just failed to find a tangerine shirt. With the game in added-on time Hibs almost snatched the points. Firstly Keatings made space in the box and his shot was tipped round the post by Bell. From the resulting corner McGregor headed towards goal but the ball was gathered by Bell in a goalmouth scramble.
Summing Up – After being under the cosh in the first half United will be delighted not to have lost the game. For spells in the match, particularly in the second half they played some decent stuff and the defence certainly looked well organised throughout.
Man of the Match – Scott Fraser was heavily involved all day and as it was his corner that resulted in the equaliser he was United’s top man today.
United: Bell, Dixon, Durnan, Toshney (Telfer 54), Spittal, Murray (Obadeyi 65), Fraser, Edjenguele, Andreu, Van Der Struijk, Van Der Velden (Smith 57)
Subs: Dillon, Donaldson, Zwick, Robson
Hibs: Marciano, Gray, Hanlon, McGinn, Fyvie, McGeouch, Keatings, Shinnie (Boyle 76) , Forster, McGregor, Cummings (Graham 76)
Subs: Laidlaw, Bartley, Holt, Eardley, Harris
Referee: Craig Thomson
Attendance : 15,492