DUNDEE chalked up their most convincing win of the new season as they moved into third place in the Scottish Championship by sweeping past lacklustre Livingston at Dens Park last night.
The title favourites narrowed the gap on early-season league leaders Hamilton to two points thanks to goals by Carlo Monti, Declan Gallagher and Peter MacDonald in a one-sided affair on Tayside.
It was more like it by John Brown’s Dark Blues who are being widely tipped for a top-flight return, but for second-bottom Livingston it looks like being a long season battling to beat the drop.
Dundee, who were trying to do a loan deal before kick-off to land Lee Mair from St Mirren, created the first chance in five minutes when MacDonald flicked on Gary Irvine’s throw-in for Monti to fire in a shot which was well held by visiting goalkeeper Kevin Walker.
However, in 32 minutes, Dundee took the lead from the penalty spot after Simon Mensing sent Irvine flying inside the box and referee Brian Colvin pointed for a stonewall penalty.
Monti stepped up and his effort found the back of the net but only after it had squirmed under Walker who got a hand to it.
Dundee got off the hook in 50 minutes when the visitors had a goal chopped off for offside. Kyle Wilkie’s pass found team-mate Martin Scott who turned and shot past Kyle Letheren from eight yards, only for the linesman to have his flag up.
But Dundee went 2-0 ahead in 56 minutes. Jim McAlister’s corner was inch-perfect for Gallagher who rose unchallenged to power a header past the helpless Walker.
The hosts were now hungry for more goals in front of the home fans and at last you sensed some of the pressure had been lifted from their shoulders.
It was one-way traffic by this stage with the Dark Blues threatening the visitors goal again in 70 minutes.
This time Mensing was almost short with a headed passback and just as MacDonald was about to pounce, Walker raced off his line to smother the danger.
Then, two minutes later, McBride let fly from 30-yeards and his effort flew just inches over the bar. Livingston tried to give themselves a lifeline towards the end but found Dundee ’keeper Kyle Letheren in fine form.
And MacDonald sealed matters in the 83rd minute with a close-range finish from Riley’s jinking run and pass which left the away defence in tatters.
Dundee: Letheren, Irvine, Lockwood, Dyer, McBride (Benedictus) MacDonald, Rae, Conroy (Reid 86) Monti (Riley 60) Gallagher, McAlister.
Livingston: Walker, Mampuya, Talbot, Mensing, Fordyce, Scott, Denholm (Lauder 88) Wilkie, Donaldson, McDonald (Mullen 62) Barrowman.
Referee: B Colvin. Att: 3,955