Sunday, 27 March 2011

Dundee FC - Dens Park

5th November 2000

Dundee 1-2 Hibernian

The New Millenium Dundee F.C. Revolution, begun in the Summer of 2000 with the appointment of Player/Manager Ivano Bonetti and host of other foreigners, mostly from Italy (see article on Fir Park, Motherwell), had stalled somewhat by the start of October.  After two impressive wins, the wheels had come off the bogey big style at Easter road, and Dundee had managed only two further victories in 13 matches.

Then up popped, almost surreally, Argentine International Claudio Cannigia.  To do justice to the player’s colourful career up to this point would take more space than I have available, but here was a man who had knocked Brazil out of the 1990 World Cup, had played for both of Argentinian football’s bitterest rivals, Boca Juniors and River Plate, and still found time to serve a year-long ban for cocaine use.

Cannigia had made his debut for Dundee at Aberdeen on October 14th, coming on as a sub to score the second in a 2-0 win, but had been on the losing side in both of his matches since.  

So it is perhaps natural I thought I may drop in to Dens Park to see the great man in action.  Hibs, who had brought Bonetti & Co down to earth with a bump back in August were the midweek visitors to Dens Park.    

The understated "Officials and Players" entrance to Dens Park.
...and again in 2018 - now designated as "Main Entrance and Reception".

And whilst Cannigia certainly showed some fine touches and caused the Hibs’ defence a few anxious moments, he was outshone throughout the evening by another foreign import: Hibernian’s David ZITELLI.  The Frenchman gave an almost faultless display in how to lead the front-line, culminating in an outrageous overhead kick to win the match just after the hour.  

Earlier the sides had traded goals, with John O’NEILL able to tap in after the Dundee defence managed to get into an almighty fankle following a silly back-pass by Patrizio Billio, on 17 minutes.  A quarter of an hour later, Dundee’s former Hibernian defender Steven TWEED had equalised, heading in a free-kick from Georgi Nemsadze.

The great man himself.
Dundee v Hibernian - November 2000

Cannigia played out the season with Dundee, scoring 7 in 21 appearances, before offering up evidence that all clubs in Scotland are just feeder clubs for the Old Firm, by switching to Rangers.  He travelled to the 2002 World Cup but, despite failing to play, still contrived to get himself red-carded whilst on the bench.  Which really takes some doing when you think about it.    

Panorama of Dens Park, Dundee.

... same view in 2018.

10th March 2018

Dundee 0-4 St Johnstone

Approaching Dens Park down Mains Road.

Dens Park - the day truly was as grey as the pic suggests.

The rear of The Bobby Cox Stand - Dens Park, Dundee.

Dens Park Club Shop.

A pic showing the proximity of Dundee United's Tannadice Park to Dens Park.

Dens Park - Dundee F.C.

Currently unused stairway which would have been utlised when the whole of the South Enclosure was in use.  

I like the look of optimism in the stride of a number of the Dundee fans 
ascending the South Enclosure steps before kick off. 

Dundee v St Johnstone  - March 2018

The Bob Shankly Stand at Dens Park is used to house away fans.
Bob (Bill's elder brother) Shankly led Dundee to their sole Scottish League title in 1962,

and to the semi-finals of the European Cup the following year.

The Mains Stand at Dens Park is just under 100 years old.
The two wings sit at an angle to each other, which my pic fails to show.

You can see the point where the roofs of the two wings meet here.
And, yes, that is the ball at the top of the pic. 
Quite why Saints' Jason Herr is not interested in it, I have no idea.

Panorama of Dens Park, Dundee.

Catering facilities for the South Enclosure are best described as "basic".
In the wet, "grim" is a better word.

Milk, sugar and condiments self-served from a table swimming in rainwater. 

Dens Park's Bobby Cox Stand.
Cox, who died in 2010, was captain of that 1962 title winning side.

Dundee v St Johnstone - March 2018

View from the rear of the South Enclosure

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