Scottish Premiership
Kilmarnock2Dundee Utd0

Kilmarnock 2-0 Dundee United

  • Dundee United lose six-game unbeaten run
  • Kilmarnock win fourth straight home league game
  • The Ayrshire side move into third place
  • Dundee United remain top ahead of Hamilton

Two goals in three minutes gave Kilmarnock a deserved win that ended the six-game unbeaten run of Scottish Premiership leaders Dundee United.

The Ayrshire side had the better of the first half against lacklustre visitors, who started - and finished - the night two points clear of Hamilton.

But Kilmarnock had to wait until the 63rd minute for the opener, Alexei Eremenko setting up Tope Obadeyi.

That clever finish was followed by a more conventional Mark Connolly header.

United failed to threaten a comeback that would have extended their winning run over Kilmarnock, who move above Inverness and reigning champions Celtic into third spot, to six games.

Visiting manager Jackie McNamara had said this week that, while he hoped his side could provide a challenge at the top, it was too early to label them as potential title contenders.

His caution was justified as the Terrors struggled to come to terms with lively opponents looking much more comfortable on the artificial surface installed this summer.

Following his fine performance against Partick Thistle, Finnish playmaker Eremenko was the architect again as Kilmarnock whipped the ball around a rain-soaked pitch.

Conor Brennan makes his Kilmarnock debut
Conor Brennan replaced the injured Craig Samson to make his Kilmarnock debut

United struggled to cope and Josh Magennis forced one near-post save from Radoslaw Cierzniak, before the Polish goalkeeper palmed a downward header clear.

A volley from Eremenko flew wide and another by Obadeyi should have hit the target rather than flying over from eight yards.

It took United 25 minutes to threaten, when Nadir Ciftci headed wide, but they began to impress themselves in the exchanges that followed.

Stuart Armstong had an effort blocked by Craig Samson at point-blank range. And, although the United man appeared to come off worse as the two collided, it was the home goalkeeper who had to be replaced at half-time with a suspected fractured toe.

But before the half ended, the visitors had a lucky break when Magennis outmuscled Callum Morris to reach Eremenko's ball over the top and the forward's chip over the advancing Cierzniak bounced in front of the unguarded goal but kissed the top of the bar.

Kilmarnock faded after the restart but United were unable to test Conor Brennan, the Northern Ireland Under-21 goalkeeper making his debut from the bench after leaving Leicester City in the summer.

However, the home side burst back into life when Eremenko flipped the ball neatly over Jaroslaw Fojut's sliding challenge and curled a low cross into the path of Obadeyi, who nutmegged his marker before jabbing past Cierzniak.

It was Eremenko who also supplied the delivery for the second, Connolly holding off Fojut to head home the Finn's corner.

United substitute Gary Mackay-Steven sent one effort over while Chris Erskine had a shot beaten away by Brennan.

However, it was Kilmarnock who came closest to adding to the scoring with Robbie Muirhead's wicked drive being turned over by Cierzniak.

Stuart Armstong and Craig Samson clash
Stuart Armstong and Craig Samson clashed before half-time, leaving the goalkeeper with a broken toe
Tope Obadeyi wheels away in celebration
Tope Obadeyi's goal was his fourth of the season
Mark Connolly heads Kilmarnock's second goal
Mark Connolly headed Kilmarnock's second goal following a corner
Mark Connolly celebrates scoring for Kilmarnock
Kilmarnock were firmly in control after Mark Connolly's headed goal

Line-ups

Kilmarnock

  • 1SamsonSubstituted forBrennanat 45'minutes
  • 2BarbourBooked at 43mins
  • 6ConnollyBooked at 90mins
  • 29Pascali
  • 23Chantler
  • 4Hamill
  • 8Clingan
  • 10Johnston
  • 20EremenkoBooked at 69minsSubstituted forMuirheadat 80'minutes
  • 16Obadeyi
  • 28Magennis

Substitutes

  • 7McKenzie
  • 13Brennan
  • 18Ashcroft
  • 19Slater
  • 21Ngoo
  • 22Westlake
  • 33Muirhead

Dundee Utd

  • 1Cierzniak
  • 12Watson
  • 14Morris
  • 5Fojut
  • 2Dillon
  • 6Paton
  • 8Rankin
  • 18Dow
  • 10ArmstrongSubstituted forMackay-Stevenat 64'minutesBooked at 90mins
  • 17Erskine
  • 7CiftciSubstituted forAdeyemoat 76'minutesBooked at 83mins

Substitutes

  • 11Mackay-Steven
  • 21Telfer
  • 23Smith
  • 24Spittal
  • 26Szromnik
  • 33Spark
  • 49Adeyemo
Referee:
Crawford Allan
Attendance:
3,953

Match Stats

Home TeamKilmarnockAway TeamDundee Utd
Possession
Home53%
Away47%
Shots
Home15
Away11
Shots on Target
Home6
Away3
Corners
Home7
Away2
Fouls
Home14
Away10

Live Text

Match ends, Kilmarnock 2, Dundee United 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Kilmarnock 2, Dundee United 0.

Booking

Mark Connolly (Kilmarnock) is shown the yellow card.

Ryan Dow (Dundee United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Mark Connolly (Kilmarnock).

Corner, Kilmarnock. Conceded by Callum Morris.

Foul by Chris Chantler (Kilmarnock).

Chris Erskine (Dundee United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Sammy Clingan (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Gary Mackay-Steven (Dundee United).

Booking

Gary Mackay-Steven (Dundee United) is shown the yellow card.

Tope Obadeyi (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Gary Mackay-Steven (Dundee United).

Corner, Kilmarnock. Conceded by Radoslaw Cierzniak.

Attempt saved. Robbie Muirhead (Kilmarnock) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Corner, Dundee United. Conceded by Jamie Hamill.

Attempt missed. Chris Johnston (Kilmarnock) left footed shot from the centre of the box is just a bit too high.

Booking

Ola Adeyemo (Dundee United) is shown the yellow card.

Mark Connolly (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Ola Adeyemo (Dundee United).

Foul by Robbie Muirhead (Kilmarnock).

Gary Mackay-Steven (Dundee United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Robbie Muirhead (Kilmarnock).

Callum Morris (Dundee United) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Substitution

Substitution, Kilmarnock. Robbie Muirhead replaces Alexei Eremenko.

Attempt missed. John Rankin (Dundee United) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses the top right corner.

Foul by Ross Barbour (Kilmarnock).

Gary Mackay-Steven (Dundee United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt saved. Chris Erskine (Dundee United) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Substitution

Substitution, Dundee United. Ola Adeyemo replaces Nadir Ciftci.

Attempt missed. Gary Mackay-Steven (Dundee United) left footed shot from the left side of the box is just a bit too high.

Foul by Jamie Hamill (Kilmarnock).

Chris Erskine (Dundee United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Booking

Alexei Eremenko (Kilmarnock) is shown the yellow card.

Goal!

Goal! Kilmarnock 2, Dundee United 0. Mark Connolly (Kilmarnock) header from the centre of the box to the high centre of the goal. Assisted by Alexei Eremenko.

Corner, Kilmarnock. Conceded by Callum Morris.

Substitution

Substitution, Dundee United. Gary Mackay-Steven replaces Stuart Armstrong.

Goal!

Goal! Kilmarnock 1, Dundee United 0. Tope Obadeyi (Kilmarnock) left footed shot from the right side of the six yard box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Alexei Eremenko.

Attempt missed. Mark Connolly (Kilmarnock) right footed shot from the centre of the box is high and wide to the right.

Josh Magennis (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Dundee Utd96121812619
2Hamilton85211551017
3Kilmarnock9522127517
4Inverness CT8512127516
5Celtic7421156914
6Aberdeen84131310313
7Dundee824279-210
8St Johnstone8305510-59
9Partick Thistle72141011-17
10Motherwell8215412-87
11St Mirren8116614-84
12Ross County8107620-143
View full Scottish Premiership table

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