Saints U20s 2-1 Dundee United U20s

Sunday 29th October

Saints Under 20s progressed to the next round of the SFA Youth Cup after defeating Dundee United 2-1 at McDiarmid Park this afternoon. After a goalless first half Saints took the lead on 62 minutes thanks to a brilliant curling strike from Jamie Docherty. Saints then doubled their advantage on 80 minutes as Docherty converted a Shaun Struthers cross for his second of the afternoon.

However, Dundee United made the closing stages interesting as they pulled a goal back on 84 minutes when substitute Louis Appere headed a Gavin Ritchie cross past Saints keeper Ross Sinclair. However, Alex Cleland’s side held out to progress into the next round.

MATCH REPORT

Saints Under 20s welcomed their Dundee United counterparts to McDiarmid Park this afternoon for an SFA Youth Cup Third Round tie.

It was Saints who got the match underway in the pleasant autumn sunshine at McDiarmid Park. The young Saints started the match brightly forcing several corners in the opening 15 minutes and the closest they came to breaking the deadlock was when Kyle McClean delivered a great ball from a corner into the box that Ally McCann was inches away from making a connection with.

Saints were playing well and on 27 minutes Cameron Lumsden broke into the United box before crossing the ball but it was turned behind for a corner by Scott Allardice. The corner was taken by McClean and his delivery into the box was cleared by Joe Piggott but his clearance only went as far as McClean who got another opportunity to cross the ball into the box but this time the midfielder’s delivery was comfortably cleared by the United defence.

Saints kept applying the pressure and a minute later were awarded a free kick out wide on the right after Luc Bollan had brought down Lumsden. McClean took the free kick delivering another good ball into the box but the visiting defence stood firm clearing the danger. Play then continued and Saints very quickly won the ball back to create another chance this time McClean setting up Cameron Ballantyne however, the midfielder fired inches wide of the target.

Dundee United created a decent chance to take the lead on 41 minutes as Piggott saw his strike at goal blocked by the Saints defence. The ball then broke to Graham Taylor but Lumsden did well to turn the shot from the midfielder behind for a corner. Logan Chalmers took the corner and his delivery into the box found the head of Piggott but the striker headed over.

Then with 2 minutes of the first half remaining Shaun Struthers saw his header turned behind for a corner after more good play out on the wing by Euan O’Reilly.

Alex Cleland’s side continued their good play at the start of the second half as on 47 minutes Ballantyne did well to turn in the box before having a shot which hit Josh Donaldson’s right hand post. Then 2 minutes later Jamie Docherty saw his shot from a McClean free kick saved by Donaldson.

Despite the early pressure in the second half by Saints Dundee United were still a threat and on 52 minutes Chalmers unleashed a strike but it was comfortably dealt with by Ross Sinclair in the Saints goal.

Then a minute later Ballantyne did well to hold off the challenge from several United defenders before crossing a great ball across the face of the goal but unfortunately for Saints there were no takers.

Saints pressure eventually told on 62 minutes as Docherty got the ball just inside the box and the attacking midfielder curled a great strike past Donaldson and into the top corner of the net.

The visitors then went looking for a quick response and 2 minutes later Taylor fired a shot over. Then shortly after Piggott also saw his shot go over as the Tannadice side tried to take advantage of their good spell of pressure.

Saints then doubled their advantage with 10 minutes remaining as a long ball forward by Lumsden picked out Struthers and he broke into the box before finding Docherty at the back post who slotted the ball into the net for his second of the afternoon.

The scoring was not over and with 6 minutes remaining United pulled a goal back as substitute Louis Appere headed a Gavin Ritchie cross into the net to make the closing stages interesting.

The final minutes of the match saw McClean fire a free kick from the edge of the box well over Donaldson’s goal. Then deep into added on time Dominic McMeekin had a chance to draw United level and take the match to extra time but he dragged his effort wide of the target.

Saints U20s: Sinclair, Lumsden, Thomson, McCann, Wilson, Quigley, O’Reilly, McClean, Struthers (Robertson 85), Ballantyne (Jardine 78), Docherty

Unused Substitutes: Wills (GK), Brian, Wooley, Donald, Walker

Booked: Lumsden, McCann, Sinclair

Scorers: Docherty (62, 80)

Dundee United U20s: Donaldson, Ritchie, Dailly, Allardice, Bollan, Davidson, Chalmers (Appere 65), Inglis (McMeekin 65), Piggott, Glass (Ward 83), Taylor

Unused Substitutes: Reekie, Hornby, McArthur

Booked: Davidson

Scorer: Appere (84)

Referee: Jonathan Bell

Match Report by Daryl Scott

Picture: Jamie Docherty