Dundee boss Jim McIntyre has praised his players’ resolve and togetherness after their against-all-odds draw with Rangers at Dens yesterday.
The Dark Blues had taken an early lead through skipper Kenny Miller before Nathan Ralph was sent off in the 20th minute – a decision Dundee will appeal – with Andy Halliday converting the resultant free-kick.
There were few within the stadium who would have been willing to wager that McIntyre’s men would survive the remaining 70 minutes of the game without conceding again.
However, they did just that with the result taking Dundee off the foot of the Premiership table and above St Mirren.
The manager said: “I was delighted considering we were down to 10 men for so long.
“It is a difficult match when you go down to 10 men against one of the best sides in the country.
“But I thought the boys showed great resolve and good organisation.
“Having said that, I didn’t think Rangers cut us open that much.
“Jack (Dundee keeper Hamilton) has made one or two saves.
“We knew we would have to give up the wider areas and defend a lot of crosses but we were nice and narrow and the distances between our two fours were very good.
“So the players deserve all the credit because it is not easy to handle that.”
McIntyre added: “It was an opportunity to get off the bottom of the league today.
“We have had two or three of them and we haven’t managed to take them.
“So I am really pleased that we have managed to do that but I will reiterate there is still so much hard work ahead.
“There are a lot of tough games in December so it is just a case of one at a time.
“The boys are in a happy place at the moment. There is a real spirit of togetherness there that you see on the training ground every day.”
When asked if he had watched Ralph’s sending off again, McIntyre added: “Yes, I have and the referee has told me it is for denying a clear goal-scoring opportunity.
“That is going to be appealed because Andy Boyle is around on the cover so it is definitely not that.
“That was disappointing but I would rather talk about how good the players were rather than that decision.”