Dundee fall apart

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The Independent Football

Forget every other over-hyped show that will appear in Edinburgh this month. This had everything that you could want. A goal festival laced with style and two red cards had Easter Road's audience demanding a curtain call.

Forget every other over-hyped show that will appear in Edinburgh this month. This had everything that you could want. A goal festival laced with style and two red cards had Easter Road's audience demanding a curtain call.

Everyone came to see Ivano Bonetti's Dundee, but Tayside's dark Azzurri were upstaged by Hibernian as poor discipline, in the shape of two red cards, shredded the Italian player-manager's ambitions.

The former Sampdoria midfielder has promised flair, but even his breath must have been taken away by Fabian Caballero's opening goal after just eight minutes. Bonetti and his compatriot, Marcello Marrocco, combined in a fast fluent move before Georgi Nemsadze pierced Hibs' defence with a wonderful pass which Caballero whipped past the goalkeeper Nick Colgan from 16 yards with his right foot.

However, even that goal was eclipsed seven minutes later when Didier Agathé restored parity in quite bewildering fashion. Hibs were under threat from another Caballero run until Franck Sauzée stepped in and released his fellow Frenchman. Agathé simply took it on his own from there.

The striker's pace carried him past scything tackles from Nemsadze, Steven Tweed and Barry Smith before he stabbed a shot past the Dundee goalkeeper Robert Douglas.

The quality never dropped. John O'Neil, another of Hibs' summer signings, panicked Marrocco into a foolish trip in the 31st minute to earn a penalty, but Russell Latapy's kick was superbly beaten out by Douglas.

However, Dundee imploded inside four minutes before the interval when Agathé scored again and Caballero's folly left his side with 10 men. Great vision from O'Neil and then Latapy released Agathé and the striker took the measured pass in his stride before curling an arrogant shot over the stranded Douglas. That punishment was compounded when Caballero was sent off for elbowing Matthias Jack in the face.

Dundee's search for an equaliser saw them picked off in the last nine minutes as Hibs struck three times, with Dirk Lehmann adding the final flourish. The striker had only been on the field six minutes when, in the 81st minute, he met Latapy's cross with a downward header which thumped past Douglas.

Two minutes later, the German struck again as Agathé's pace and Ulrik Laursen's power combined on the left before the latter's cross was swept in by Lehmann.

Another substitute, Stuart Lovell, then compounded Dundee's misery by showing persistence to finish off O'Neil's cutback, before Patricio Billio's ill-disciplined saw him collect his second caution for a lunge on Lovell in the final minute.

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