The Verdict: Dundee United cruise through to the next round of Scottish Cup with 4-0 win over Montrose

© SNSDundee United's Pavol Safranko heads in from close range to open the scoring
Dundee United's Pavol Safranko heads in from close range to open the scoring

Dundee United cruised through to the fifth round of the William Hill Scottish Cup with a comfortable 4-0 win over Montrose at Links Park.

The League 1 part-timers struggled to impose themselves throughout and were undone by two goals in the first half with the Tangerines adding another two to their tally in the second 45.

Montrose boss Stewart Petrie made two changes from the team that lost to East Fife last week with Graham Webster and Paddy Cregg replacing Liam Callaghan and Euan Henderson in the starting line-up.

United manager Robbie Neilson made three changes following last weekend’s win over Dunfermline at Tannadice with Scottish Cup-winning hero Morgaro Gomis – back for his third spell at the club –

Aidan Nesbitt and Paul Watson coming in for Fraser Fyvie, Matty Smith and Stewart Murdoch.

The Tangerines got off to a perfect start, opening the scoring in just the eighth minute when a Nesbitt cross from the left was only half cleared with Pavol Safranko pouncing to head home from close range.

Nesbitt was posing a lot of problems for the home defence and he tried his luck again from the edge of the home penalty area but his shot flew straight to Montrose keeper Allan Fleming.

Petrie’s men had another big scare in the 35th minute when Iain Campbell had to clear a Paul Watson header off his own line.

However, just eight minutes later, the Tangerines did double their lead with a cracker from Callum Booth as the full-back cut in from the left and hit a shot from 25 yards that flew into the back of the net off the post.

United started the second half in similar fashion to the first, enjoying plenty of possession and zipping the ball about well while the home side continued to struggle to create anything of note.

Montrose sub, the other Paul Watson, did have a half chance in the 59th minute but his long-range effort was comfortably saved by United keeper Benjamin Siegrist.

Booth tried his luck once more from distance in the 73rd minute with Fleming having to produce a fine diving save to keep out his well-struck effort.

However, the game was well and truly put to bed in the 81st minute when Billy King calmly steered home a cross from the right from fellow sub Nicky Clark past Fleming to make it 3-0.

The Tangerines added another in the 92nd minute when recent signing, Ian Harkes, who had come off the bench to make his debut, had an easy finish from close range.