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Football: United defeat Dundee in Cup derby

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Dundee United defeated Dundee 2-1 in a hard-fought Scottish Cup quarter-final derby match at Dens Park on Sunday, with all the goals coming in the first half.

Dundee had not beaten their city rivals in the Scottish Cup since February 1956, but they were given a boost shortly before kick-off when United's top-scorer Johnny Russell was ruled out through a leg injury he picked up in midweek.

United started the stronger and they went ahead after just 11 minutes when Brian McLean was gifted what amounted to a free header from a Barry Douglas inswinging free-kick to nod past Rab Douglas.

Eight minutes later Dundee were level following a well-worked move from out right which ended in John Baird setting up Jim McAlister to thump in a low strike from 15 yards.

That set up a period of dominance for the home side that almost brought a second goal from Baird, but against the run of play it was United who moved back ahead after 35 minutes.

Moving quickly out of defence, Willo Flood found Stuart Armstrong, who angled a pass through for Gary Mackay-Steven and the midfielder, cutting in from the right, found the back of the net with a low drive from the edge of the penalty area.

Dundee forced a succession of corners early in the second half, but failed to really threaten the United goal and it was United who came closest after 70 minutes when Armstrong's cross was just inches beyond the reach of striker Jon Daly with Douglas beaten.

The former Celtic keeper then had to look lively to palm away an ill-advised back-header from Davide Grassi as the Italian centre-back tried to deal with a dangerous inswinging free-kick from Flood.

Dundee remained penned into their own half in the last 10 minutes as United ran down the clock down for a win that keeps them on track for a second Scottish Cup win in three years after their triumph in 2010.

In the last of the quarter-finals, Hibs took another step towards a return to Hampden Park after their harrowing 5-1 loss to Hearts in last year's final by defeating Kilmarnock 4-2 in a thriller at Rugby Park.

In-form striker Leigh Griffiths opened the scoring for Hibs after 15 minutes when he latched on to a long header forward from David Wotherspoon to lash a low shot under Cammy Bell.

Dayton then equalised for Killie 10 minutes later, hammering the ball home after keeper Ben Williams had dived to his right to parry a long-range effort from William Gros.

Hibs were back ahead by half-time thanks to a comedy of errors from the home defence which allowed Matt Done to score his first goal since his loan move from Barnsley.

But Killie hit back again and were level after 70 minutes when Lewis Stevenson obstructed Paul Heffernan in the box and the striker picked himself up, composed himself and smashed the ensuing penalty kick down the middle.

But it was man of the match Griffths who had the final say, scoring twice in the last 10 minutes, the fourth goal coming from the penalty spot after his 20-yard free-kick had hit the arm of Gros.

On Saturday, Celtic beat St Mirren 2-1 with all the goals coming in the first half, while Falkirk won away at Hamilton 2-1.

The draw for the semi-finals will take place on Monday.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130303/football-united-defeat-dundee-cup-derby