Dundee emerged with a 3-1 victory from tonight’s Viaplay Cup match against a competitive Dumbarton team. Zach Robinson opened the scoring late in the first half only for the Sons to grab an instant equaliser through Tony Wallace. Dundee responded just as quickly with a second goal, from Diego Pineda, before the break. The Dee went on to dominate the second half, but had to settle for only one more goal, a penalty converted by Robinson.
There were six changes to the Dee starting eleven. Antonio Portales came in for his debut and Diego Pineda made his first start. Adam Legzdins, Owen Beck, Jordan McGhee and Zach Robinson also came in. Luke McCowan was suspended. The other five players who were replaced were all on the bench; Jon McCracken, Cammy Kerr, Jack Wilkie, Lyall Cameron and Zak Rudden. There was a change to the formation too, with the Dee adopting a three man defence.
The Dark Blues had their first attempt on goal in the first minute when Diego Pineda’s header struck a defender. That promising opening was not followed up and Dumbarton were able to play their way into the game. The Sons were organised and tidy, getting forward frequently and winning a few corners without creating any danger initially.
After 15 minutes Dundee finally brought Dumbarton keeper Brett Long into action. Following a corner the second ball in found Joe Shaughnessy whose header was touched away for a second corner.
Dumbarton responded by giving the Dee defence its first spot of real trouble. Ryan Wallace cut in from the right and his cross shot would have been tricky for Adam Legzdins if Lee Ashcroft had not blocked.
Midway through the half the Dark Blues sprang into life and created two wonderful chances in as many minutes. Sadly they wasted them both. Scott Tiffoney and Owen Beck opened up the Dumbarton defence with some fine attacking down the left. Beck’s cross found Jordan McGhee a couple of yards in front of an open goal but he blasted his shot over the bar. Josh Mulligan then sent Zach Robinson racing clear, but he shot against the goalie.
After 38 minutes the Dee grabbed the opening goal, and it was a classic poacher’s goal for a striker, but an awful goal for a keeper. Beck cut inside to shoot. Brett Long spilled the ball and was punished by Zach ROBINSON who nipped in to tuck the ball into the net before the goalie could recover.
The Sons took only three minutes to equalise, and it wasn’t a pretty goal from the Dee point of view. A Dumbarton corner skidded goalwards off a Dee head. Malachi Boateng blocked. There was a scramble, which was ended by Tony WALLACE thumping the ball home through a crowd of players from 12 yards.
Dundee responded well to the equaliser and were ahead again after 44 minutes. Scott Tiffoney sent Diego PINEDA through the middle to score with a quick, low finish off the post from 16 yards. The first two goals were messy, but this was beautifully simple, and perfectly executed.
The Dark Blues almost extended their lead in first half injury time, but Long saved well from Shaughnessy’s header.
The first half was fairly even but Dundee stepped up a gear from the start of the second half and totally dominated the rest of the match. Disappointingly, despite some attractive and creative attacking, they could score only one goal, and that was a penalty.
A series of entertaining attacks ended with shots flying narrowly high or wide. Tiffoney, Mulligan and Beck were all prominent in these attacks, with Robinson and Pineda never quite managing to get their shots on target. Robinson was particularly unlucky. He was constantly threatening to score and very nearly did so when he shot past the keeper following skillful play on the right by Mulligan only for a defender to clear on the goal line.
Finally Dundee got the third goal, and surprisingly, given the Dee’s record with spot kicks this year, it was from a penalty. A goalmouth scramble ended with Scott Tiffoney being downed in front of goal. The resulting bad tempered shoving brought a yellow card for Jordan McGhee and a second yellow for Sons centre back Mark Durnan. When calm was restored Zah ROBINSON scored from the spot without any fuss.
Lyall Cameron had replaced Diego Pineda before the goal, and he made a worthwhile contribution in the later stages, combining well with the other attackers and helping set up a series of dangerous attacks. Tiffoney, Mulligan, Beck and Robinson were all prominent in these attacks, but frustratingly none of them brought a fourth goal.
A 3-1 win against a League Two team is hardly an eye catching result, but Dumbarton made this a difficult contest for the Dee. The Sons were well organised and played neat football through the midfield in the first half. After half time they were forced onto the back foot, but they kept their shape and defended resolutely. It could, and maybe should, have been a bigger victory, but Dumbarton deserve credit for keeping Dundee out for long spells.
Dundee’s three man defence allowed the wings backs, Mulligan and Beck, to operate as wingers and they were highly effective. The central midfield pairing of Boateng and McGhee were in control after half time, although in the first half Dumbarton ensured they didn’t have matters their own way. The two Mexican players did well in their first home game. Antonio Portales worked well with the other defenders. Diego Pineda showed plenty of good touches, linked well with his team mates, and took his goal in pleasing style.
Tonight’s win leaves Dundee still in contention in Viaplay Cup’s group E, which will be settled at the weekend. Three points were essential tonight, and the Dee delivered.
Dundee FC 3-4-1-2
Ashcroft (Robertson 83), Shaughnessy, Portales
Mulligan, McGhee, Boateng, Beck
Pineda (Cameron 66), Robinson
Unused substitutes: McCracken (gk), Sharp (gk), Kerr, Byrne, Rudden, Anderson, Wilkie.
Goals: Robinson (38, 76 pen), Pineda (44).
Booked: Portales (foul on Gray), McGhee (confrontation with Durnan).
Dumbarton FC 4-3-3
Lyness, Crighton, Durnan, Young
Tony Wallace (Wylde 71), David Wilson (Gray 63), Blair,
MacLean, Ryan Wallace (Pignatiello 63), Hilton (Vata 80)
Unused subs: Brown (gk).
Goal: Tony Wallace (41).
Booked: Lynas (foul on Boateng), Durnan (foul on Robinson and confrontation with McGhee).
Sent off: Durnan (two yellows).
Referee: William Collum. Assistants: Stuart Stevenson, Paul McAvinue.
Report: James Christie.