Goals from John Smith and Jesse Curran were enough for Dundee to see off Ross County and extend the lead at the top of the SPFL Development League. Dundee lined up with Josh Meekings in an experienced defence, and were rarely troubled by the reigning champions as they moved six points clear at the top of the table.
It was Meekings first public outing in the Dark Blue shirt as he lined up next to Julen Etxabeguren and Kosta Gadzhalov who are both also returning from lengthy spells on the side line.
Dundee were bossing possession in the opening stages, but did little to trouble Ross Munro in the County goal. The keeper’s only test came when he had to catch Matty Henvey’s attempted lob after 13 minutes.
Henvey is the young Dees top scorer, and he set up strike partner John Smith for the game’s opening goal. Henvey clipped the ball into the box, giving Smith a simple header past Munro to give Dundee the lead.
Jack Lambert had the opportunity to double the Dees advantage after 36 minutes when Jesse Curran set him up inside the box, but his low shot was easily gathered by the diving Munro.
It took Dundee 10 second half minutes to double their lead. Jesse Curran broke down the right-hand side, and sent the ball looping over the helpless Munro into the net. It was either an outrageous finish or a poor cross, but it had put Dundee in control of the tie.
Jordan Piggott headed the ball off the line as County searched for a route back into the match. Dylan Dykes twice lashed shots over the bar before Curran was denied his second of the day by Munro.
Jack Lambert nearly ended the game in stunning style as he jinked past four County defenders en-route to the box, only to see his effort blocked and cleared off the line.
This was a controlled performance against a decent County side that won the Development League last season. The back three of Julen, Meekings and Gadzhalov dealt with everything thrown at them, and further up the pitch, Jack Lambert put in another display that was a joy to watch. Jesse Curran was excellent in the right wingback role, running past County defenders like they weren’t there and grabbing the all-important second goal.
Dundee (3-5-2): Ferrie, Piggott, Rice, Extabeguren (Berry 74), Meekings (Moore 74), Gadzhalov, Curran, Vincent, Henvey, Lambert, Smith (Anderson 63)
Subs Unused: Gourlay, Mooney
Goals: Smith 16’, Curran 55’
Ross County: Munro, Malcolm, Grivosti, S.Morrison, Kelly, R.Dingwall, Dykes, Tumilty, Wallace, Maciver, G.Morrison
Report: Andrew Creegan