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The story of a dreadful season for Dundee United

The story of a dreadful season for Dundee United

A horrible season for Dundee United culminated in relegation on Monday night.

Tonight we look back on how the disaster unfolded game-by-game.

It comes with a don’t-watch-alone warning for Arabs.

Aug 2: United 0 Aberdeen 1. After a poor pre-season United went down to Aberdeen on the opening day. Summer signings Rodney Sneijder and Darko Bodul only made the bench.

Aug 8: Motherwell 0 United 2. United ran out winners at Fir Park. A tight game was decided by a Louis Laing own goal and a Simon Murray strike.

Aug 11: United 2 Dundee 2. The derby was going United’s way thanks to a Blair Spittal double. A late collapse saw Greg Stewart and James McPake net to grab a point.

Aug 15: Hamilton 4 United 0. United were destroyed by Accies. An error-strewn performance allowed the home side three up by the interval. Chants for gaffer McNamara to be sacked.

Aug 22: United 1 Celtic 3. The Hoops were comfortable winners .

Aug 29: Ross County 2 United 1. It had been a bad week with the news Sneijder had been released on medical grounds. United were bolstered by the arrival of Billy Mckay but still lost.

Sept 12: United 1 Kilmarnock 2. United trailed but the fightback looked on when Mckay struck but a Kevin McHattie strike meant defeat.

Sept 19: United 1 Inverness CT 1. At least the losing streak ended, but having taken the lead when Mckay netted early, United failed to capitalise. More alls for McNamara to go.

Sept 26: St Johnstone 2 United 1. The end for McNamara. Despite taking the lead it was another abject performance and came as surprise time was called on the manager’s reign.

October 3: Partick 3 United 0. Dave Bowman was put in charge. United slumped to the bottom of the table. Bowman said there was a perception that United were soft touch.

October 18: United 0 Hearts 1. An international break gave United time to find a manager in Mixu Paatelain just in time for the visit of Hearts.

Oct 25: Celtic 5 United 0. He didn’t need telling, but Mixu got an indication of the size of the job facing him his team thrashed. Mixu blasted them.

Oct 31: United 1 Ross County 0. The game was decided by a Mckay penalty nine minutes from the end. Japanese goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima watched on and the plan was to sign him. Permit problems delayed that for two months.

Nov 7: Aberdeen 0 United 2. The high of Ross County wouldn’t last and midweek saw United exit the League Cup at Hibs. Pittodrie saw the Dons canter to a comfortable win.

Nov 21: United 1 St Johnstone 2. Another bad afternoon. Mckay scored, but United were behind by half-time. The manager moved to strengthen his team by signing former-fans favourite Gavin Gunning.

Nov 28: United 1 Hamilton 2. United took the lead but lost. Experienced Guy Demel and Florent Sinama Pongolle were added to the squad. Neither were fit to play.

Dec 5: Kilmarnock 1 United 1. Sinama Pongolle made his debut. A run of three defeats ended, but this was a missed opportunity.

Dec 12: United 0 Partick 1. Demel was fit to play, but Sinama Pongolle lasted just 11 minutes.

Dec 19: Inverness CT 2 United 2. A mistake by Michal Szromnik cost points. It wasn’t the first time the lack of an experienced replacement for Rado Cierzniak proved costly.

Dec 30: Hearts 3 United 2. The last game of the year. United led through Mckay, but by the time Mark Durnan struck they’d conceded three.

Jan 2: Dundee 2 United 1. Kawashima finally made his debut but his blunder cost the points. Just to compound the misery Demel was red carded.

Jan 15: Utd 1 Celtic 4. Celtic ran out comfortable winners. Finn Riku Riski was brought in on loan from Rosenburg but this was his only start.

Jan 23: United 5 Kilmarnock 1. United’s best performance of the season. They blew away one of their rivals in the battle to avoid the drop.

Feb 13: Hamilton 0 United 0. At New Douglas Park late penalty save from Kawashima secured a point.

Feb 16: United 0 Motherwell 3. United were humbled 3-0 by fellow strugglers ‘Well on one of the darkest nights of the season. It was a big blow.

Feb 20: United 2 Hearts 1. With all looking lost, chairman Stephen Thompson issued an apology and scathing condemnation of the team. The players held a crisis meeting and the result was a spirited performance and a late Paul Paton goal secure the points.

Feb 27: Ross County 0 United 3. A rare good day and a fine victory. County were no match for United.

March 2: United 0 Aberdeen 1. A goal from Simon Church gave the Dons victory. It was a blow but not entirely unexpected

March 12: Motherwell 2 United 1. Henri Anier grabbed a deserved lead, but the home side were level by half time and went on to win.

March 20: United 2 Dundee 2. Another dramatic derby and another fightback from a team two down at one stage. This time it was at least United who finished strongly to take a point via a Mckay double. The game hinged on a red card for Dundee goalie and, in all truth, until that point the Tangerines were well beaten.

April 2: St Johnstone 0 United 1. More hope came after Dow secured the points at McDiarmid Park.

April 5: Partick 1 United 0. The Tangerines headed for Firhill and should have had the game won in the first half. Kris Doolan struck a late winner.

April 9: United 0 Inverness CT 2. A second defeat in three days. Gavin Gunning picked up the ball in open play and walked off because of an injury. It would be his last act as a Tangerine.

April 24: United 1 Hamilton 3. There were protests outside and it now was a matter of time before relegation.

May 3: Dundee 2 United 1. Nightmare becomes reality as the drop is confirmed. It had to be at Dens Park, scene of so many previous triumphs.

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This article originally appeared on the Evening Telegraph website. For more information, read about our new combined website.