Dundee United blanked out Dundee-derby mind-games as Ian Harkes reflects on winner

Dundee United matchwinner Ian Harkes says Dundee’s pre-match mind games were ignored by all within Tannadice after the Tangerines inflicted a 1-0 defeat on their city rivals.

Ian Harkes celebrates his goal that won the derby for Dundee United at Tannadice.

Harkes’ strike nine minutes from time settled a close encounter, with his effort beating Dundee keeper Adam Legzdins despite him getting two hands to it.

In the build-up to the first Dundee derby of the season, Dees manager James McPake tried to crank the pressure up on his opposite number Tam Courts when suggesting that he had a big decision to make on whether to reinstate now-fit No 1 keeper Benjamin Siegrist or stick with deputy Trevor Carson.

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In the end Courts chose Siegrist, with the Swiss put in a strong performance, and Harkes insisted that the United squad just blanked out the pre-match talk.

"No. There were a few things floating around here and there but we didn’t really (pay any attention to it),” the American responded.

“We have two amazing goalies. Trevor is an excellent keeper in his own right and he came in and did very well for us.

“It was always going to be a tough decision for the manager because we all know Benji’s quality and how often he saves us. He did well today.

Harkes enjoyed scoring the winner in front of a packed Tannadice. “It felt good,” he added. “It was massive to help the team win a big game. It was everything I expected, scoring the winner in the derby in front of a full house. It was a tough game from the very start.

“It’s definitely not the best goal I’ve ever scored but it’s one of the biggest.”