David Martindale proving the pundits wrong as he enjoys biggest victory as Livingston manager
David Martindale is taking great satisfaction from proving the pundits wrong after his team moved into the top six with his biggest league victory as Livingston manager.
Scott Pittman also scored in the first half to make it 3-0 at the break and Livi made it four in the second half through Jack Fitzwater to seal a richly-deserved three points.
It was Livingston’s biggest Premiership win since beating Ross County 4-0 in December 2019, and Martindale’s biggest league victory since taking charge in 2020.
He said: “The most pleasing aspect has got to be the clean sheet and that’s what I spoke about at half time. That was the challenge I set the the players before the game and another challenge ai set them at half time.”
Martindale was critical os his forwards last week, but was pleased to see his work on the training ground pay off in the first half.
He explained: “We work on a few patterns of play. Every other day we do that, attacking wide areas and getting in behind. It came to fruition. In other games we could have been a bit more clinical.
“I felt that this was coming.
“I think it is well deserved. We were written off at the start of the year by nearly everybody. Every single pundit. I was quite vocal saying I knew this group of players I had … I think it is remarkable and I think the boys deserve massive, massive credit.”
The game was Mark McGhee's home debut as Dundee manager and it was one to forget for the 64-year-old with the Dark Blues remaining rooted to the foot of the table.
Livingston stormed into an early lead in the sixth minute.
Alan Forrest advanced down the left into the home box before cutting the ball back and although Dundee keeper Ian Lawlor palmed the cross away, Anderson was on hand to stab home from close range.
The Dark Blues had an immediate chance to equalise but Danny Mullen hit a 25-yard free-kick over Livi keeper Max Stryjek's crossbar.
Instead, it was Livi who extended their advantage with a quickfire double.
In the 18th minute, Joel Nouble sent a ball in from the right to Pittman for an easy finish and, just two minutes later, Forrest took a quick free-kick to Nicky Devlin and his low cross was turned home once more by Anderson.
A barrage of boos rang out from home supporters with some Dundee fans heading for the exits.
Not surprisingly, McGhee's men looked shell-shocked and struggled to make any impression on a Livingston side who were in complete command.
However, they did finally test Stryjek again in the 42nd minute with Ryan Sweeney powering a header towards goal but the keeper made a comfortable save.
Livingston came close to making it four at the start of the second half as James Penrice put a low ball in from the left but this time Anderson sent his shot just wide.
The Lions had another opportunity shortly after as Pittman hit a long-range effort that flew just inches past Lawlor's right-hand post.
Dundee huffed and puffed as they tried to get back into the game but they struggled to create clear-cut opportunities with Stryjek a virtual spectator.
And it was Livi who made it four in the 65th minute when Forrest teed up Fitzwater to calmly pass the ball into the back of the net past Lawlor.
Livi were in cruise control with more boos ringing out from the remaining home supporters at the final whistle.