Dundee United’s pre-season gathered momentum with an emphatic victory against Brechin City.
The Tangerines totally dominated the Glebe Park contest, with Sam Stanton, Osman Sow, Logan Chalmers, Louis Appere, Liam Smith and Paul Watson scoring the goals.
The tempo of United’s play and the clinical finishing will have pleased boss Robbie Neilson, as will the fact that new signing Lawrence Shankland got over half-an-hour of action.
Neilson’s starting line-up included trialist central midfielder Pablo Ganet, an Equatorial Guinea international who has been training with the squad this week.
He saw plenty of the ball in the early stages but for all the Tangerines’ possession they struggled to create an opening.
It was a case of first chance, first goal when they went ahead on 13 minutes.
Sow cushioned a header into the feet of Stanton on the right side of the box. He wasn’t closed down and from a narrow angle the former Hibs man gave keeper Paddy O’Neil no chance when he curled a left foot shot into the top corner.
Five minutes later it was 2-0.
Adrian Sporle, making his debut, sent a cross in from the left and Sow finished at the near post.
United were threatening to run up a big score when they went three in front on 27 minutes.
Paul McMullan played a quick free-kick from midfield through to Chalmers and, with the Brechin defenders not nearly as quick to react, he had time and space to pick his spot.
As half-time approached Sow did very well to hold the ball up and wait for support to arrive when a long pass was sent in his direction. But his cross for McMullan wasn’t of the same quality and it flashed across the six yard box.
By this point Smith was getting treatment off the pitch for a blow to the face when a Brechin free-kick came into the box but he was able to play on again after the break.
United were back on the attack at the start of the second half and after Rachid Bouhenna found himself in space for a shot at the edge of the box he then fired it over the bar.
Ganet at least made the keeper work a few minutes later but his effort was comfortably saved by O’Neil.
Brechin earned a free-kick 25 yards from goal and the trialist who took it couldn’t have struck it sweeter. Benjamin Siegrist was beaten but the ball struck the cross bar.
On 55 minutes Lawrence Shankland was introduced, replacing Sow.
Ganet had another chance four minutes later when the ball dropped nicely for him on the edge of the box but his dipping volley was just too high.
Just after the hour mark a Stanton cross was headed on to the post by Mark Connolly and Appere, who had come on at half-time for Chalmers, smashed home rebound.
United made it 5-0 on 69 minutes when Smith let fly from over 20 yards out and beat O’Neil low to his right.
Shankland did his best to get on the scoresheet but a left foot shot from 18 yards didn’t trouble the keeper.
With 75 minutes on the clock, eight subs came on for United.
One of them, Scott Banks, came close to scoring when he cut in from the left and narrowly missed the target with his shot.
It was six when Watson scored on 85 minutes and seconds later O’Neil produced a fantastic header to keep out a powerful Shankland back post header.
Brechin starting XI – O’Neil, trialist, McLaughlin, trialist, Hill, trialist, Hamilton, McIntosh, trialist, McManus, trialist. Subs – trialist, trialist, trialist, trialist and McMinn.
Dundee United starting XI – Siegrist, Liam Smith, Sporle, Connolly, Reynolds, McMullan, Sow, Stanton, Bouhenna, Chalmers, Ganet. Subs – Mehmet, Frans, Cammy Smith, Robson, Butcher, Glass, King, Harkes, Shankland, Appere, Graham, Banks, Mochrie and Watson.
Referee – Mike Roncone.
Attendance – 838.