Accies web reporter Mark Gillespie with Saturday’s details …..
Saturday 2ndFebruary 2019
Hamilton Academical 1 Dundee 1
Darian MacKinnon’s first goal of the season rescued a dramatic late point to keep us in tenth spot, one point above our opponents.
After Scott Wright’s second half strike it was starting to look as though Dundee would leapfrog us in the table, but up popped the skipper in injury time to earn a first league point for new Head Coach Brian Rice. For the new boss it feels like all three points.
“Given the timing it does feel like a victory. I think my players deserved it. We kept going and hopefully we sent the fans home happy tonight.”
“I thought we started well, but became scrappy and nervy in the second half. Dundee got their goal, but we made positive substitutions. I think they gave us fresh impetus, and a draw was probably a fair result.”
“I think everything we tried to do today was positive. I want to give the fans something to get behind, and we started that today.”
“I’m just in the door, and haven’t worked with any of the players here before, apart from George Oakley at Inverness. But I saw some things today that we can work with, starting again on Wednesday.”
We made four changes from last weekend as a new era began on freezing cold day at the Hope Stadium. Gary Woods returned in goal, with MacKinnon also fit again to return alongside Alex Gogic in midfield. New signing George Oakley was hoping to make an immediate impact up front, as we hoped to reverse a run of five straight defeats in league and cup.
Our opponents also made wholesale changes after their midweek cup exit. Five players made their debuts, as Woods, Wright, Robson, Hadenus and Horsfield all started for Jim McIntyre’s side.
A bigger Accies crowd had turned out to greet a new management team, and we made a promising and energetic start. A neat flick from Oakley almost had Steven Boyd in on goal on 4 minutes, but from a tight angle his shot drifted just wide of Dieng’s far post.
We should have been in front on 10 minutes as a Martin cut back found Oakley in the box. His shot was blocked twice by Dieng, with Tony thwarted twice by Kusunga with rebound efforts.
After a sluggish start, Dundee then had the better of things, Kilgallon had to hack a Curran effort off the Accies line on 11 minutes. But Gary Woods was to be the real Accies saviour, with two terrific stops before half time.
The first opportunity arrived at the feet of Martin Woods six yards out on 31 minutes, but his namesake somehow got a glove to the shot and keep the effort out.
It was an even better stop on 42 minutes, as Woods got down low to his left to tip a powerful Dales drive wide of the post. Dundee finished the half on top, with Accies pegged back into their own half.
With a lot at stake for both sides it became a scrappier second half contest. Accies weren’t much of an attacking force, with long range efforts from Martin and Andreu flying well off target, just before the hour mark.
We hadn’t shown the promise of the first half, and the visitors edged ahead on 65 minutes. Scott Wright got the break of the ball off Aaron McGowan inside the Accies box to steer his shot past Woods from 10 yards.
But Accies made attacking changes in response, with January signings Steven Davies and David McMillan entering the fray, as we threw caution to the wind, ending the game with four up front.
Slowly we forced Dundee onto the back foot, but time was running out. Just as the boards went up for added time, MacKinnon’s moment arrived in a frantic finale.
Dieng had just managed to block a McGowan effort, the ball breaking to Davies on the edge of the Dundee box. His lay off was perfect for the skipper to place a composed right foot finish into the top corner.
We ended the game on top, and the new coach and his players look to carry the momentum on into midweek with the visit of St Johnstone.
Accies: Woods, McGowan, McMann, Gordon, Kilgallon, Oakley (McMillan, 67),Gogic, MacKinnon (c), Andreu, Martin (Davies, 56) , Boyd (Miller, 56); Subs Unused: Fulton, Imrie, Mimnaugh, Sowah
Dundee: Dieng, Ralph, Kusunga, Woods, R McGowan, Wright,Robson, (P McGowan, 61), Dales (O’Sullivan, 77), Curran (Miller, 77), Hadenus, Horsfield; Subs Unused: Parish, Kerr, Nelson, Moore
Accies Goals: MacKinnon, 90+1
Accies Cautions: Martin, 40, Gogic, 70, Gordon, 73, MacKinnon, 73
Dundee Goals:Wright, 65
Dundee Cautions: Curran, 62, Ralph, 73
Referee: Euan Anderson Assistants:David Roome and Stuart Stevenson 4th Official: Nick Walsh