Rovers lose at Dens
An in-form Rovers team ran out at Dens Park in front of a very healthy away support and went on to start the game in positive fashion. Dylan Easton’s early run and shot went just over the bar before Kyle Connell had an excellent heading opportunity at the back-post, which went just wide. Then a clever through ball forced Dundee goalkeeper Ian Lawlor to charge out the box to clear, just before Scott Brown curled a shot wide.
Injuries forced Dundee into a couple of early substitutions with Shaun Byrne and, ex-Rover, Ben Williamson being introduced, and this seemed to shift the balance of play in the home side’s favour. The next chance fell to Dundee’s Zach Robinson, and he was extremely unlucky not to give the home side the lead: he was afforded space and time in the box and his shot hit one post, rolled along the line, hit the other post, but somehow stayed out.
As the half progressed, Jamie MacDonald was called into action making good saves from Paul McMullan and, the very lively, Robinson. Rovers survived the pressure from Dundee and went in 0-0 at half-time.
Half-time: Dundee 0-0 Raith Rovers
The game changed early in the second half: Brown was penalised for blocking a shot with his arm and referee, Grant Irvine, promptly pointed to the spot. Robinson converted the penalty straight down the middle to give the hosts the lead. 1-0 Dundee.
Dundee doubled the lead in the 54th minute. An effort from a corner rebounded back to Robinson and he made no mistake from 10 yards out. 2-0 Dundee
Minutes later Rovers had a chance to get a goal back when a nice move allowed Kieran Ngwenya space on the left. His cross was straight into the path of the in-rushing Brown, but his powerful shot was well over the bar.
Rovers rolled the dice by introducing Lewis Vaughan and John Frederiksen however neither really managed to have an influence on the game. Both teams had half-chances as the game went on, but never really looked like scoring.
Dundee saw the game out to take all 3 points.
Full Time: Dundee 2-0 Raith Rovers
By David Proudfoot
Lawlor, Kerr, French, Sweeney, McGhee, Ashcroft, Mulligan, Robinson, McMullan, Anderson, Grayson. Subs: Legzdins, Jakubiak, Byrne, McCowan, Robertson, Williamson, Sheridan, Cameron, Osei
MacDonald, Dick, Millen, Spencer, Connolly, O’Riordan, Ngwenya, Stanton, Connell, Brown, Easton. Subs: McNeill, Nolan, Vaughan, McBride, Coulson, Masson, Frederiksen
Ian Murray spoke to RaithTV after yesterday’s defeat in Dundee:
Raith Rovers will be looking to make it four wins in five games this weekend, when they travel to Dens Park to take on Dundee.
To do that however, they’ll need to turn the tables on a record which sees them without a league win at the venue since 1995.
A 2-0 win back in April of that year was another vital win as Raith eventually won a First Division and League Cup double, but since then, despite wins in the playoffs and the Scottish Cup, occasions where Rovers have left Dens Park with three points have proven to be elusive.
Rovers go into the match as one of the Championship’s form teams, and last weekend’s 3-1 win over Hamilton Accies, moved the, from seventh into the playoff spots in third, level on points with second placed Morton, and just three behind table topping Ayr United.
Dundee also won at the weekend, although it didn’t look likely at one point, with Gary Bowyer’s side two down to Partick Thistle at the interval, although a fine second half fightback saw Dundee win 3-2.
That win lifted them from sixth to fourth, although in a wildly unpredictable division, just two points separate Thistle in seventh, and second placed Morton.
These two sides have already met once this season, with Dundee running out 1-0 winners at Stark’s Park in August, thanks to a goal from Josh Mulligan after 13 minutes.
Saturday’s match referee will be Grant Irvine.
Dundee wins: 75
Raith Rovers Wins: 35