Scottish Championship
Dundee Utd3Raith Rovers0

Dundee United 3-0 Raith Rovers

Tony Andreu celebrates scoring United's second goal
Andreu celebrates scoring United's second goal

Dundee United closed the gap on Championship leaders Hibernian to six points with a comfortable win over Raith Rovers at Tannadice.

Thomas Mikkelsen headed in from a Paul Dixon cross on the stroke of half-time.

Tony Andreu doubled the hosts' lead three minutes into the second half, slotting home following more good work from Dixon.

January loan signing Mikkelsen then grabbed his second goal with a clever, angled header.

With Hibs held to a surprise draw at home to Ayr United, Ray McKinnon's side had extra motivation to end a sequence of five games without a win and duly delivered against a side who have now gone 13 matches since tasting victory.

Rovers were dealt a blow when goalkeeper Kevin Cuthbert couldn't shake off a knock received after 18 minutes and he was replaced by Conor Brennan midway through the first half.

Both teams had sent out with attacking intentions but neither created a quality chance until the final five minutes of the first half. Kyle Benedictus met a free kick and his header across the box set-up Declan McManus, who headed well but his effort landed on top of the net.

United made more of their opportunity, Simon Murray's free kick cleared only as far as Dixon and his cross was met by Mikkelsen who scored with a header from inside the six yard box, his first goal for the club.

Dixon was again the provider three minutes into the second half when his low cross was not dealt with and Andreu controlled in the middle of the penalty area and sent it low into the corner.

United buoyed by the perfect start to the second half kept the pressure up and Blair Spittal shot wide.

Mikkelsen had vowed when he signed with United to be the 'new Duncan Ferguson' and he showed the home fans further evidence of his aerial ability after 53 minutes when he rose perfectly to meet Simon Murray's deep cross to power home his second.

With the game ended as a contest, Raith continued their endeavours but found themselves more often on the back foot as Murray, Scott Fraser and Andreu all had opportunities to extend United's lead.

Alex Nicholls made his debut replacing Mikkelsen, the Dane going off to a rousing reception from the home fans and he should have scored with his first touch but only hit the post after being teed up perfectly by Murray.

Post-match reaction

Dundee United manager Ray McKinnon: "Raith Rovers are a good side with lots of good players as I know from my time there last season. I knew we'd have to be patient and I'm delighted with the goal in the first half to go 1-0 up.

"I'm delighted for Thomas, he's come in here and everyone is expecting some sort of superstar. We know what Thomas is about and we knew if we got decent balls into the box for him he's a decent finisher, he's aggressive in the air and hopefully that's the start of a run for him."

Raith Rovers boss Gary Locke: "We lost a poor goal right on half-time and one right after it and it knocked the stuffing out of us and unfortunately the heads went down and we start feeling sorry for ourselves.

"We had a long chat after the game, the only way we are going to get out of the rut we are in is working hard. There is nothing I can do about confidence levels, early in the game we looked good but we can't let the heads go down when we lose a goal.

"Tuesday [at home to Morton] is important, we have a couple of games in hand. I've told the players that they are letting themselves down - they are better than that."

Line-ups

Dundee Utd

  • 1Bell
  • 20van der Struijk
  • 4Durnan
  • 14EdjengueleBooked at 33mins
  • 3Dixon
  • 10Fraser
  • 6ToshneySubstituted forTelferat 90+1'minutes
  • 19AndreuSubstituted forvan der Veldenat 76'minutes
  • 7Spittal
  • 9Murray
  • 18MikkelsenSubstituted forNichollsat 77'minutes

Substitutes

  • 2Dillon
  • 8Murdoch
  • 11Nicholls
  • 12Telfer
  • 21Zwick
  • 23van der Velden
  • 24Robson

Raith Rovers

  • 1CuthbertSubstituted forBrennanat 29'minutes
  • 2Thomson
  • 6Benedictus
  • 5Mvoto
  • 3McHattie
  • 12MatthewsSubstituted forHardieat 62'minutes
  • 4CallachanBooked at 45mins
  • 14DavidsonBooked at 44mins
  • 11Barr
  • 20McManusSubstituted forStevensonat 71'minutes
  • 9Stewart

Substitutes

  • 7Johnston
  • 19Skacel
  • 21Thompson
  • 23Brennan
  • 52Hardie
  • 55Barr
  • 66Stevenson
Referee:
Stephen Finnie
Attendance:
5,232

Match Stats

Home TeamDundee UtdAway TeamRaith Rovers
Possession
Home50%
Away50%
Shots
Home17
Away2
Shots on Target
Home6
Away0
Corners
Home3
Away3
Fouls
Home10
Away10

Live Text

Match ends, Dundee United 3, Raith Rovers 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Dundee United 3, Raith Rovers 0.

Charlie Telfer (Dundee United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Ryan Stevenson (Raith Rovers).

Charlie Telfer (Dundee United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Ryan Stevenson (Raith Rovers).

Substitution

Substitution, Dundee United. Charlie Telfer replaces Lewis Toshney.

Corner, Dundee United. Conceded by Bobby Barr.

Foul by Alex Nicholls (Dundee United).

Mark Stewart (Raith Rovers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Attempt missed. Nick van der Velden (Dundee United) left footed shot from outside the box is too high.

Foul by Paul Dixon (Dundee United).

Mark Stewart (Raith Rovers) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Attempt missed. Blair Spittal (Dundee United) right footed shot from the right side of the box is close, but misses the top right corner.

Attempt missed. Alex Nicholls (Dundee United) right footed shot from the centre of the box is just a bit too high.

Substitution

Substitution, Dundee United. Alex Nicholls replaces Thomas Mikkelsen.

Substitution

Substitution, Dundee United. Nick van der Velden replaces Tony Andreu.

Attempt missed. Simon Murray (Dundee United) right footed shot from the left side of the box misses to the right.

Corner, Dundee United. Conceded by Kyle Benedictus.

Substitution

Substitution, Raith Rovers. Ryan Stevenson replaces Declan McManus.

Attempt missed. Tony Andreu (Dundee United) left footed shot from outside the box is too high.

Kyle Benedictus (Raith Rovers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Lewis Toshney (Dundee United).

Attempt blocked. Blair Spittal (Dundee United) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.

Foul by William Edjenguele (Dundee United).

Declan McManus (Raith Rovers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Attempt missed. Scott Fraser (Dundee United) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right.

Substitution

Substitution, Raith Rovers. Ryan Hardie replaces Ross Matthews.

Attempt saved. Simon Murray (Dundee United) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Attempt saved. Simon Murray (Dundee United) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Attempt missed. Tony Andreu (Dundee United) right footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses the top left corner.

Tony Andreu (Dundee United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Iain Davidson (Raith Rovers).

Goal!

Goal! Dundee United 3, Raith Rovers 0. Thomas Mikkelsen (Dundee United) header from the right side of the six yard box to the top right corner. Assisted by Simon Murray.

Attempt missed. Blair Spittal (Dundee United) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left.

Attempt missed. Simon Murray (Dundee United) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is close, but misses to the left.

Goal!

Goal! Dundee United 2, Raith Rovers 0. Tony Andreu (Dundee United) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner.

Frank van der Struijk (Dundee United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Bobby Barr (Raith Rovers).

Foul by Thomas Mikkelsen (Dundee United).

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Hibernian23147238122649
2Dundee Utd23127434211343
3Falkirk2310763526937
4Morton2210753324937
5Queen of Sth248793334-131
6Dunfermline236892833-526
7Dumbarton2467112836-825
8Raith Rovers226792230-825
9Ayr2349102136-1521
10St Mirren2328132242-2014
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