United fell to another disappointing defeat at Starks Park today despite a late Simon Murray goal.
By Alasdair Marnoch
United started the first ten minutes as the stronger of the two teams with little defensive errors from the Tangerines. Bell wasn’t troubled once and United produced some good deliveries into the box.
The positive start came to a halt after a mix up between Murdoch and Flood resulted in Ryan Hardie going one on one with Bell. Fortunately Bell did well to get his hands to Hardie’s shot and it went out for a corner. This incident seemed to have knocked United’s confidence with the Rovers having another good chance at goal just a minute later.
After a sketchy few minutes United started to play with a more positive style once again but getting a number of passes called offside.
The first half ended badly for United with Stewart Murdoch going in the referee’s book for a rash tackle outside the box. Raith took full advantage of this and the free kick met the head of Craig Barr and hit the back of the net.
The second half started the way that the first half ended with Durnan giving away a free kick on the half way line for a hand ball giving Raith another set piece opportunity and Hardie doubled Raith’s lead with a shot from his left boot going in.
As the final third of the match came around Murray got the ball inside the Raith box but was instantly swarmed by Raith’s defence which forced him to offload the ball to Andreu who miss hit the ball sending it over the cross bar.
Raith continued to dominate with United giving them too much space allowing them to counter attack. The ball was brought to just outside the box where it was fired wide of the post for Bell to take a goal kick.
As the game seemed to be over as the last ten minutes approached Willo Flood was gifted the ball from 30 yards out which the keeper palmed away to Murray who put the ball out over the cross bar.
This seemed to restore some confidence in the United side as after a scramble in the box Murray miraculously found the bottom left corner through a penalty box rife with Raith’s defenders.
Summary: United continue to lose goals from set pieces and after starting and ending well, Raith seemed to dominate most of the match with defender M’Voto dealing easily with everything United threw at them.
Man of the Match: Simon Murray for his goal.
Raith Rovers: Penksa, Thomson, Callachan, M’Voto, Benedictus, Johnston, Thompson, Matthews, McManus, C Barr, Hardie
Subs not used: McHattie, Roberts, Skacel, Jonny, David, McKay, B Barr
Dundee United: Bell, Toshney, Durnan, Edjenguele, Robson, Flood, Mikkelsen (van der Velden, 60’), Murdoch (Coote, 68’), Murray, Van der Struijk (Nicholls, 56’), Andreu
Subs not used: Long, Donaldson, Telfer, Dixon
Referee: Craig Charelston