Winger Paul McMullan is loving being a key man at Dundee but says he’ll enjoy life even better at Dens Park if the Dark Blues earn a crucial three points tonight.
Their opponents are Dunfermline Athletic, one of their big rivals for the coveted second place finish, with the two clubs separated in the table by just five goals.
McMullan is looking to add to his incredible tally of eight assists in his first eight appearances for the Dark Blues since making the short trip across Sandeman Street in January.
Arriving on loan from Dundee United until joining Dundee permanently in the summer, the 25-year-old has immediately made himself an invaluable part of James McPake’s side.
And he’s delighted with his starring role at Dens after being a bit-part player in the Premiership at Tannadice.
He said: “I am enjoying the way we are playing, I feel I’m contributing and that is important to me.
“Hopefully, that helps the team go on a consistent run.
“Before I came here I spoke to the manager about the way he wants to play and how he wants to go about things, so I felt it would suit me.
“That was one of the reasons things here interested me.”
‘People in Dundee are friendly’
Shortly after swapping Dundee for United, McMullan expected some stick to come his way. However, all has been well – until a derby homes into view, that is.
He added: “The reaction to coming here has been fine, the people in Dundee are friendly – they don’t abuse you in the street or when you’re out walking your dog!
“I think you’d maybe get a bit of stick if the teams were playing each other – hopefully those games will happen soon – but so far it’s been fine.
“I don’t think people bother that much if you’ve crossed the road.”
Match ‘could have big say on second place’
Dundee’s last outing was a positive 3-0 victory over Alloa Athletic and McMullan is confident the Dark Blues can build on that victory against Dunfermline.
The two sides kick off at 7.20pm live on BBC Scotland and the winger recognises just how big a match this could be – for both sides.
“Getting second place is crucial to the play-offs, it helps you so much,” he said.
“It’s a tough schedule so what you want is to be watching the other two teams playing knowing you have that extra time before facing the winner.
“But there are a few teams sniffing around second place who will be thinking exactly the same as us, so it’s going to be a tough end to the season.
“Dunfermline are one of those teams, we still have to play them twice and those games could have a big say on second place.
“So we have to perform and we believe if we can play to our best we’ve got enough to win.
“Since I joined, the game last Friday night was probably the best, most complete performance we’ve put in.
“We want to keep that going and get on a good run now.”
Focus on second place
The former Dunfermline loanee added: “We just have to focus on ourselves and go into this final part of the season playing well, feeling good about ourselves and with some momentum.
“If it is the play-offs we end up in, then you want to be going into them confident and comfortable as a team.
“This week is a big game for both teams, nobody is trying to hide from the fact it means a lot to each of us.
“You have three teams on the same points, it’s tight in that second place.
“So we have to try our best to solidify that and then just see what happens.
“We have left a few points out there since I came here and it’s frustrating because we could have been in a far better position.
“But, for me, it’s about making sure we get into second place because it’s probably a step too far given the gap Hearts have.”