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Dundee 2-0 Stirling Albion

By Jim Spence

Scottish Football League

In-form Dundee put their 25-point penalty behind them with a win over Stirling Albion.

Stephen O'Donnell and Leigh Griffiths were on target as Dundee stretched their unbeaten run to nine matches and made it five consecutive victories.

O'Donnell opened the scoring after 35 minutes with a composed finish from a pass by Sean Higgins.

Griffiths doubled the lead a minute into the second half by capitalising on a sloppy back-pass to slot home.

It was freezing off the pitch, but there was plenty of heat on it in a game that raged end to end throughout.

Dundee went ahead in 36 minutes, when O'Donnell latched on to a deflected Higgins pass to shoot low under goalkeeper Scott Christie.

Stirling had only three fit substitutes for the match, but they started brightly against a Dundee side looking to go nine on the bounce unbeaten.

Rab Douglas saved twice from Sylvano Comvalius in the opening 20 minutes. In-between those efforts, the Dundee keeper also stopped a Greig McDonald header on the line.

Dundee's first effort came from Nicky Riley on 16 minutes, racing onto a Griffiths ball to crack a low shot from 18 yards that was well saved by Scott Christie.

The Binos keeper repeated that feat with a low sprawling one-handed stop to turn a Griffiths shot round the post on the half hour mark.

Just on the half hour, Griffiths was forced wide down the 18-yard line but swung a cute chip in from tight angle only to see Jonathan Brown head it over the bar.

Dundee, who lost their appeal against a 25-point deduction by the Scottish Football League yesterday, appear to have acquired an indomitable fighting spirit and they needed it against a Stirling side who looked sharp and lively and very attack-minded.

When first half hostilities ceased, the home fans gave a warm round of applause to the visiting support for their recent financial donation to the Dark Blues to help them in their fight against administration.

It was a fitting end to a half that had been competitive but played in a spirit of fairness.

Dundee started the second half with their tails up and went two ahead just after the restart, Griffiths reacting quickly to intercept Jerome Heekeng's back-pass and beat keeper Christie and net his 12th of the season.

Skipper Gary Harkins killed the ball on his thigh 12 yards out just after that, but his shot was straight at the keeper, who saved easily.

Then O'Donnell flashed a 20-yard drive just wide of the Albion keeper's right-hand post.

Craig Forsyth was next to test the keeper, who parried his low drive from 22 yards in the 64th minute and next O'Donnell's low effort saw Christie make another low save.

By now, it was a constant stream of Dark Blue attacking and, in the 73rd minute, Griffiths raced away again and fired a fierce low shot that Albion keeper Christie again blocked.

Stirling's Andy Gibson had a rare chance in 80 minutes but fired high over after snatching at the shot.

In the last minute, 17-year-old Leighton McIntosh, who turned down a move to both halves of the Old Firm last week, replaced Griffiths, but he was hardly on the pitch before the full-time whistle went to signal Dundee's ninth unbeaten game in a row.

Dundee: Douglas, Irvine, McKeown, Weston, Lockwood, Riley (Stewart 63), O'Donnell, Harkins, Forsyth, Griffiths (Mcintosh 90), Higgins.
Subs Not Used: Cervi, Benedictis, Tulleth.

Booked: Weston.

Goals: O'Donnell 36, Griffiths 46.

Stirling: Christie, Kane, Corrigan, Greig McDonald, Brown, Gibson, Robertson, McHale, Heeking, Smith, Comvalius (Taggart 61).
Subs Not Used: Reidford, Aitken, Flood, Allison.

Att: 3,842

Ref: N Watters

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