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Preview: Forfar Athletic vs. Dundee - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's friendly clash between Forfar Athletic and Dundee, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Scottish League Two side Forfar Athletic host Premiership outfit Dundee in a friendly encounter at Station Park on Saturday afternoon.

This will be the first of three warm-up matches before they both face their first competitive games of the 2021-22 season in the Scottish League Cup this July.

Match preview

Both Forfar and Dundee experienced contrasting campaigns last season, with the Loons relegated to League Two after losing 3-2 in the relegation playoff final against East Fife.

Forfar finished bottom of the league after winning just four matches in a shortened 22-game season – due to the coronavirus pandemic – and will now be preparing for life in the fourth tier of Scottish football for the first time in five years.

A change of head coach at Station Park has seen Stuart Malcolm replaced by player-manager Gary Irvine, who was in caretaker charge for the final three weeks of last season and he impressed the club's hierarchy enough for them to hand the 36-year-old the job permanently.

Irvine is hoping to guide the Loons back to League One at the first attempt and will be looking to use Saturday's fixture as well as friendlies against Brechin City and Cove Rangers to assess his players and tactics before their campaign kicks off against Ross County in the League Cup on July 10.

Dundee, meanwhile, were promoted from the Scottish Championship after beating Premiership side Kilmarnock 4-2 in the relegation playoff final.

The Dark Blues return to the top-flight after just two years away and will be looking forward to exciting encounters against the Old Firm as well as the Dundee derby against their rivals United.

Manager James McPake is upbeat ahead of the new campaign and is hoping his side can use their positivity and momentum to get off to a good start in the League Cup and Premiership.

The Dark Blues will face Forfar, Leyton Orient and West Ham United in warm-up fixtures before their season begins on July 13 against Brora Rangers in the League Cup.

Dundee have won each of their last five meetings against Forfar by a combined scoreline of 19-4, while the Loons last beat the Dark Blues back in August 2006, winning 2-1 in the League Cup.

Forfar Athletic form (all competitions):
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • L

Dundee form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • W

Team News

Forfar's summer signings Stefan McCluskey, Matty Aitken, Paul Crossan and Craig Slater will all be in contention to make their first appearances for the club this weekend.

Irvine could pick himself to start at centre-back alongside Andy Munro, while one of Scott Shepherd or Steven Doris is likely to lead the line in attack.

As for Dundee, new recruits Luke McCowan, Ryan Sweeney and Paul McMullan will be hoping they can feature for the first time on Saturday.

Teenage midfielder Fin Robertson, who has recently recovered from a long-term ankle injury, is also in contention to play.

Championship Player of the Season Charlie Adam may start in central midfield, while Danny Mullen, who scored eight goals last season, is set to start up front.

Forfar Athletic possible starting lineup:
McCallum; Meechan, Irvine, Munro, Whyte; Slater, Moore, Anderson; Aitken, Shepherd, McCluskey

Dundee possible starting lineup:
Legzdins; Kerr, Ashcroft, Sweeney, Marshall; Byrne, Adam, McGowan; McCowan, Mullen, McDaid

SM words green background

We say: Forfar Athletic 0-3 Dundee

There are now three divisions separating the two sides and if Dundee are to field a relatively strong team on Saturday, then Forfar could be in for a difficult afternoon.

We feel that the Dark Blues will have too much quality for the hosts and should win comfortably at Station Park.

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