By Alasdair Marnoch
In freezing fog, County started positively with a shot from the inside of the six yard box but the linesman was quick to put his flag up for offside. County went on to win the first corner of the match in the fifth minute of the game. They took advantage of this as Woods crossed it in for an unmarked Chris Routis to score from the half volley.
United fired back eight minutes later when Obadeyi crossed it in to Andreu who hit the back of the net from the first touch.
In the fourteenth minute of the game Telfer was given a yellow card for fouling ex United player Ryan Dow on the edge of the box. Once again County took advantage from the set piece and, after Bell palmed away Schalke’s direct effort, County’s captain Quinn took them ahead once again.
As the first twenty minutes drew to an end, weather conditions on the pitch began to worsen further and the Tangerine Army chanted about how the freezing fog was stopping them from seeing the ball.
In the 27th minute of the game Chow further increased the hosts’ lead from inside the box making it 3-1.
United’s defence seemed to crumble in the 29’th minute as a series of confident passes from County’s attack resulted in another goal from Liam Boyce.
In first half stoppage time, Tony Andreu took a strike which bounced off the left post and into the bottom right corner to the delight of the United fans making it 4 – 2.
McKinnon brought on two substitutes at half time with Flood coming on for Murdoch and new man Thomas Mikkelsen coming on for the injured Tope Obadeyi.
The first ten minutes of the second half seemed to be all United, with several crosses going into the box resulting in two corners.
Some entertaining end to end football was on display but no team seemed to be able to find the back of the net.
McKinnon made the decision of bringing on some fresh attacking legs in the 66th minute with Blair Spittal coming on for Simon Murray.
With 22 minutes remaining Andreu took an audacious effort from 30 yards out that had County’s keeper scrambling but it went just wide of the top right corner.
County made it 5-2 in the 76th minute when Routis scored from close range after Bell saved his initial shot which bounced back straight towards him.
The final ten minutes summed up what the whole half had displayed, United being able to build up play with possession but not being able to make anything of it and ending in County eventually scoring. The Staggies brought the game to game to an end with another close range effort going into the goal from Jim O’Brien.
Summary: United’s defence was clearly over powered by County’s attack. It wasn’t all negative for United though as they often went forward positively albeit with no end result from inside the penalty box.
Man of the Match: Andreu for bringing a good attacking style to the side and his two goals.
Ross County: Fox, McEveley (Tumilty 52’), Chow, Schalk (Lalkovic,79’), Fraser, Routis, Van Der Weg, Dow, Quinn(c), Boyce, Woods (O’Brien,52’)
Subs not used: McCarey, Gobern, Dykes, Curran
Dundee United: Bell, Durnan, Robson, Edjenguele, Obadeyi (Mikkelsen,50’), Telfer, Fraser, Murray (Spittal, 67’) , Andreu, Murdoch (Flood, 46’), Van Der Struijk
Subs not used: Zwick, Van Der Velden, Dixon, Toshney
Referee: Kevin Clancy