Match report by Jim Davie
A Dougie Cameron double saw Lochee United win their Thorntons Property League Cup section with a 2-1 victory over local rivals Dundee North End.
But this was no stroll in the park for the Bluebells, who beat North End 3-1 at Thomson Park recently and, on chances, the home side will feel they should have taken something from the game.
Lochee boss George Shields made three changes from the side that won at Carluke two weeks ago, with Scott McComiskie, Logan Davie and Keiran McWalter coming in for Craig Smith, Scott Webster and Reece Ritchie.
Although the visitors had much more of the possession in the first half it was the Dokens who created the better chances against an uncharacteristically jittery United defence.
In the opening minutes McComiskie and Grant Lawson both had chances to put their side in front with Lawson shooting wide after a poor kick out by keeper Neal Ferrie.
That was Ferrie’s last contribution to the game as he went down injured in the 10th minute and had to be replaced by Mark Mackie.
North End were dangerous on the break and, when Garry Kenneth mistimed his header, striker Gary Sutherland bore down on the Lochee goal, only to send his shot wide.
On 21 minutes the Bluebells went ahead when Greg Kirk was brought down in the box by Ryan Rigden. CAMERON took the penalty kick and scored to put Lochee one up.
Twice in the space of a couple of minutes the home side had chances to level. James Thomson’s back pass to keeper Mark Stewart was miskicked, leaving Sutherland with a great chance, but he put the ball wide.
Then, a poor pass back by Kirk was picked up by Ryan Smith who cut the ball back for Rigden, whose shot hit the junction of post and bar.
North End sensed that Lochee weren’t firing on all cylinders and began to look more threatening. On 37 minutes a corner from Liam McArtney was eventually headed onto the top of the net by Smith.
Just on half time the home side almost equalised when Rigden’s fierce shot was turned onto the post by Stewart.
The home team came out for the second half determined to get back level and Sutherland had a great chance within two minutes when he found himself with space in the Lochee box. However, he was denied by a diving block by Stewart.
The Bluebells desperately need to turn possession into goalscoring chances and they almost did when Lawson fire a ball across the face of goal, just missing the inrushing McComiskie.
Reid came on for McWalter and was able to inject a bit more pace into the Lochee attack, but it was the home side who struck next. Sutherland was brought down by Stewart on 57 minutes and ex-Lochee player Paul LUNAN confidently put away the penalty kick.
At this stage North End were looking the likelier team to go on and win the game.
Ten minutes from time Bryan Deasley came on for Davie and, with six minutes to go, Lochee grabbed what proved to be the winner.
Lochee were awarded a corner and when CAMERON’s kick was played back to him, the midfielder sent in a cross that was missed by everyone and landed in the far corner of the net.
In the dying minutes there was a chance for Lochee to rub salt into the wound when Reid’s run and cross found Deasley who was tackled by Mackie. The ball broke to McComiskie but the former Doken could only blast the ball high and wide.
The game never really reached the heights you would expect from two teams at the top of their respective leagues but North End fans will have been delighted with their team’s performance and Lochee will be delighted at topping the section table without being at their best.
North End: Ferrie (Mackie 11), Gibb, Sivewright, Ballantyne, Lunan, Archibald, Devine, Smith, Sutherland (Sturrock 80), McArtney, Rigden.
Lochee Utd: Stewart, McNally, Kenneth, Thomson, Kirk, McWalter (Reid 52) Cameron, Davie (Deasley 80), Lawson, McComiskie, Birse.