Dunfermline 2, St Mirren 0
December 16, 2000
Season 1999/2000 saw Dunfermline return to the Premier League after a 1 season absence, promoted after finishing runners-up to St Mirren in the First Division. A rivalry between the clubs developed at that time as a result of this, with the Pars determined to prove that they were the better side.
Dunfermline went into this Premier League game in December 2000 on a disappointing run of only 1 win in 6 games. The team were adapting to life back in the top division with a much changed squad under manager Jimmy Calderwood.
The BBC report from the game noted that although both teams had chances, "Dunfermline showed far greater composure and converted the chances that mattered."
Scott Thomson put the Pars ahead in the 37th minute. Stevie Crawford's shot was saved by Saints keeper Ian McCaldon but the rebound fell to Nipper whose firm shot gave the keeper no chance.
In 73 minutes, Chris McGroarty doubled Dunfermline's lead after his mazy run through the visitors' defence ended with him placing the ball past McCaldon.
Thomson almost got a third Pars goal in the final minute but his well struck shot hit the post.
The win kept Dunfermline in 9th position, with 23 points, and began an 8 game sequence where only 1 defeat was suffered. Saints fell to 11th, on 12 points.
I am pleased to have input from Scott "Nipper" Thomson about this game. Scott kindly replied to a message I sent him asking for any memories he had of the game and of that period. Many thanks to him for taking the time to give his input. Here's what he had to say:
"I can't remember much about my goal but I remember wee Chris' goal as he danced around a good few men and tucked it away nicely...he was as surprised as us when he finished it....we were comfortable the whole time and knew we were a better team and squad than them and we were still disappointed that we had lost the league to them and went up as runners up to them."
Ruitenbeek, Skinner, Skerla, Rossi, Nicholson, Ferguson, Thomson, Moss, McGroarty, Crawford, Hampshire.