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3 Dundee United talking points as Ross Graham helps Tannadice side claim crucial point against Rangers

Dundee United claimed a deserved draw from the visit of Rangers to Tannadice
Dundee United claimed a deserved draw from the visit of Rangers to Tannadice

Dundee United showed incredible fight and determination to dig out yet another important result against Rangers.

Ross Graham’s first half header put United ahead before a Joe Aribo strike squared things up for Rangers in the second period.

But United defended bravely to claim a crucial point against the Ibrox side as they continue to push for a European spot.

Courier Sport was at Tannadice to watch the 1-1 draw and here are three talking points from the game:

Dundee United have the measure of Rangers and Celtic

Ross Graham gave Dundee United the lead over Rangers

Dundee United went into this game on the back of a decent run of form.

They were unbeaten in four and hadn’t lost a goal in 360 minutes before Gers visited Tannadice.

There’s no doubt boss Tam Courts also has the measure of the Glasgow giants this term.

They’ve played the Old Firm six times this season and only lost by more than one goal once – 3-0 to Celtic in December.

A win and a draw at home to Rangers and a 1-1 stalemate with Celtic have come either side of narrow 1-0 losses in Glasgow to the Old Firm.

Rangers claimed a momentous 4-2 away win at Borussia Dortmund ahead of this one.

 

But Courts confidently predicted in his pre-match media briefing that ‘Sunday would be diffferent.’

And so it transpired.

United’s fluid 3-5-2 formation served them so well again.

Ross Graham, partnered fit-again Charlie Mulgrew and skipper Ryan Edwards in defence and all three were immense.

Ilmari Niskanen and Liam Smith gave United width and Tony Watt is forging a strong strike partnership with Marc McNulty.

United attacked at the right times and defended manfully to merit a point.

Reliable Ross Graham

Ross Graham applauding the Dundee United fans after the draw with Rangers

It hasn’t taken Ross Graham long to become a hero to the Dundee United fans.

The fact that he grew up as a Tannadice season ticket holder certainly helps.

But his composed and commanding defending is winning over more and more supporters with every game.

It took 436 minutes for Ross Graham to lose a goal in his first five starts for United.

That came as Joe Aribo breached the United net 76 minutes into Sunday’s draw,

And he looks the real deal.

Graham has real defensive presence. He’s athletic, has great positional sense and he can defend.

He can also be a threat in opposition boxes as his header proved but he was lucky not to concede a late penalty for a shirt pull on Fashion Sakala.

Can Dundee United shoot for Europe after Rangers result?

Dundee United in good form

United are right in the mix for a European spot.

So too, however, are Hibernian, Motherwell, Aberdeen, St Mirren and Livingston.

There is a six way battle with six games left until the split. It will be scrap until the end.

But United are currently one of the form teams in their mini-league and could be peaking at the right time.

Tam Courts salutes ‘big moment’ for Dundee United goal hero Ross Graham after 21st birthday mix-up

 

 

 

 

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