Rory McKenzie set Kilmarnock on their way to victory with a debut goal as Dundee United were knocked off the top of the Scottish Premier League.

Jon Daly squandered two good chances as United edged a first-half stalemate.

McKenzie pounced on a defensive error to open the scoring a minute after the break and Borja extended the lead from the penalty spot four minutes later.

Jude Winchester forced home a third after 56 minutes before Daly rolled in a reply with 11 minutes remaining.

This was a stunning result given the early season form of the two teams, but the home side deserved the win after a devastating 10-minute spell at the start of the second half and some schoolboy defending by the visitors.

Managers Kenny Shiels and Peter Houston had a difference of opinion ahead of kick-off, with the former suggesting the visitors' football was "direct and effective" but not the "most attractive" in the division.

Houston cited two 3-0 wins at Tannadice as reasons to believe the visitors might just be a force to be reckoned with in the race for second.

However, neither man could have foreseen what would happen in a compelling 90 minutes.

The first half was largely forgettable, with the clash of heads involving Gavin Gunning and Gary Harkins on 12 minutes a real concern for the 4,516 inside Rugby Park - Harkins was carried off.

Winchester celebrates after scoring Kilmarnock's third goal

Winchester celebrates after scoring Kilmarnock's third goal

Even then, the smart money would have been on United stepping up a gear to try to stay top of the table, but the visitors' defence was about to self-destruct.

Who knows what was going on inside Barry Douglas's head less than two minutes after the interval when he set off on a mazy dribble across his own six-yard box, only for Killie debutant Rory McKenzie to nick the ball off him and despatch it past Rado Cierzniak from two yards for probably the easiest goal he will ever score.

Two minutes later and the lead was doubled when Gary Mackay-Steven tripped Danny Racchi in the box.

Referee Crawford Allan pointed to the spot, and the Spaniard Borja Perez beat Cierzniak with ease.

Killie's third came from a 55th minute corner which was not cleared and substitute Jude Winchester wheeled to thrash the ball past the keeper from six yards.

Jon Daly's 50th SPL goal with 12 minutes left - his second of the season - gave United some hope, but with Harkins now stitched and watching from the directors' box, it proved to be Kilmarnock's day.

It means Killie have defeated all SPL clubs except St Johnstone since Kenny Shiels took over at Rugby Park.

Houston's players will face some very uncomfortable moments when they watch a replay of this match in the coming days.

The manager certainly felt it would "clarify the thinking" of anybody who thought United would simply have to turn up to win.

Lineup, Bookings (3) & Substitutions (6)

Kilmarnock

  • 17 Letheren
  • 02 Tesselaar
  • 04 Fowler
  • 05 O'Leary
  • 06 Nelson
  • 07 Racchi
  • 08 Kelly
  • 11 Harkins (Winchester - 15' Booked )
  • 15 Perez (Johnson - 73' )
  • 29 Pascali Booked
  • 24 McKenzie (Gross - 81' )

Substitutes

  • 53 Jaakkola
  • 26 Pursehouse
  • 10 Dayton
  • 18 Johnson
  • 28 Winchester
  • 09 Gross
  • 16 Boulding

Dundee United

  • 01 Cierzniak
  • 02 Dillon
  • 03 Douglas
  • 05 Gunning
  • 12 Watson
  • 06 Flood (Dow - 80' )
  • 08 Rankin
  • 10 Ryan (Gardyne - 53' )
  • 11 Mackay-Steven Booked (Armstrong - 53' )
  • 07 Russell
  • 09 Daly

Substitutes

  • 13 Banks
  • 04 McLean
  • 14 Millar
  • 16 Armstrong
  • 28 Robertson
  • 15 Gardyne
  • 18 Dow
Ref: Crawford
Att: 4,516

Match Stats

Shots

8 7

On target

6 2

Corners

10 2

Fouls

14 12

Live Text Commentary

90:00 +3:05 Full time

Full Time The match has reached full-time.

90:00 +2:35

Barry Douglas produces a cross, clearance made by James Fowler.

90:00 +1:25

The referee blows for offside against Jon Daly. Free kick taken by Kyle Letheren.

90:00 +0:52

Jon Daly challenges James Fowler unfairly and gives away a free kick. James Fowler restarts play with the free kick.

89:09

Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Lee Johnson from the left by-line.

87:55

The ball is swung over by Danny Racchi.

87:11

Headed effort on goal by Jon Daly from inside the penalty box misses to the right of the goal.

84:21

Unfair challenge on James Fowler by Stuart Armstrong results in a free kick. Indirect free kick taken by Ryan O'Leary.

83:35

Ryan Dow fouled by James Fowler, the ref awards a free kick. Barry Douglas restarts play with the free kick.

83:00

Keith Watson produces a cross, Michael Nelson manages to make a clearance.

82:41

Michael Gardyne delivers the ball, Michael Nelson manages to make a clearance.

80:40 Substitution

Substitution (Kilmarnock) makes a substitution, with William Gros coming on for Rory McKenzie.

79:35

Liam Kelly gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Stuart Armstrong. Barry Douglas restarts play with the free kick.

79:12 Substitution

Substitution Willo Flood leaves the field to be replaced by Ryan Dow.

78:18

Assist on the goal came from Barry Douglas.

78:18 Goal scored

Goal! - Jon Daly - Kilmarnock 3 - 1 Dundee U Jon Daly scores a goal from inside the penalty box to the bottom right corner of the goal. Kilmarnock 3-1 Dundee Utd.

76:37

Stuart Armstrong gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Rory McKenzie. Indirect free kick taken by Kyle Letheren.

75:43

Barry Douglas restarts play with the free kick.

75:43 Booking

Booking Manuel Pascali goes into the book.

75:37

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Stuart Armstrong by Manuel Pascali.

72:25

Indirect free kick taken by Barry Douglas.

72:25 Substitution

Substitution Lee Johnson replaces Borja Perez.

72:25

Unfair challenge on Johnny Russell by Rory McKenzie results in a free kick.

71:58

Corner taken by Danny Racchi from the right by-line, clearance made by Keith Watson.

71:38

Rory McKenzie takes a shot. Save made by Radoslaw Cierzniak.

71:15

A cross is delivered by Michael Gardyne.

70:29

Handball by Willo Flood. Manuel Pascali restarts play with the free kick.

68:21

The assistant referee signals for offside against Johnny Russell. Kyle Letheren restarts play with the free kick.

66:13

A cross is delivered by Danny Racchi, save by Radoslaw Cierzniak.

65:38

Corner from the right by-line taken by Danny Racchi, Johnny Russell manages to make a clearance.

64:54

Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Danny Racchi, clearance by Barry Douglas.

62:27

Keith Watson takes a shot. Blocked by Jeroen Tesselaar.

60:51

Foul by Stuart Armstrong on Liam Kelly, free kick awarded. Manuel Pascali restarts play with the free kick.

59:59

Jude Winchester takes a shot. Radoslaw Cierzniak makes a save.

56:53

Borja Perez fouled by John Rankin, the ref awards a free kick. James Fowler takes the free kick.

55:04

Assist by Ryan O'Leary.

55:04 Goal scored

Goal! - Jude Winchester - Kilmarnock 3 - 0 Dundee U Jude Winchester grabs a goal from inside the six-yard box to the top right corner of the goal. Kilmarnock 3-0 Dundee Utd.

54:30

Inswinging corner taken by Danny Racchi,

54:14

The ball is swung over by Rory McKenzie, Gavin Gunning gets a block in.

52:34 Substitution

Substitution Richie Ryan goes off and Michael Gardyne comes on.

52:34 Substitution

Substitution Stuart Armstrong replaces Gary Mackay-Steven.

51:21

Corner from right by-line taken by Danny Racchi.

50:57

Jude Winchester takes a shot. Save by Radoslaw Cierzniak.

49:02 Goal scored

Goal! - Borja Perez - Kilmarnock 2 - 0 Dundee U Borja Perez scores a power penalty. Kilmarnock 2-0 Dundee Utd.

48:02 Booking

Booking Gary Mackay-Steven goes into the book.

47:50

Penalty awarded for a foul by Gary Mackay-Steven on Danny Racchi.

46:38 Goal scored

Goal! - Rory McKenzie - Kilmarnock 1 - 0 Dundee U Rory McKenzie scores a goal from close in to the bottom left corner of the goal. Kilmarnock 1-0 Dundee Utd.

46:00

Danny Racchi sends in a cross, Gavin Gunning makes a clearance.

45:01

The second half begins.

45:00 +4:10 Half time

Half Time It is the end of the first-half.

45:00 +3:04

Unfair challenge on Gary Mackay-Steven by Liam Kelly results in a free kick. Barry Douglas restarts play with the free kick.

45:00 +1:22

The ball is swung over by Johnny Russell, clearance made by Liam Kelly.

44:02

The offside flag is raised against Jon Daly. Free kick taken by Kyle Letheren.

43:15

Danny Racchi takes the inswinging corner, Radoslaw Cierzniak makes a save.

42:48

Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Danny Racchi, clearance made by Gavin Gunning.

42:29

Unfair challenge on Borja Perez by Richie Ryan results in a free kick. Manuel Pascali takes the indirect free kick.

41:57

Unfair challenge on Gary Mackay-Steven by Ryan O'Leary results in a free kick. Free kick taken by Radoslaw Cierzniak.

41:45

The ball is swung over by Danny Racchi, Gavin Gunning makes a clearance.

41:03

Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Gary Mackay-Steven from the right by-line.

40:50

The ball is delivered by Gary Mackay-Steven, Michael Nelson gets a block in.

38:16

Gary Mackay-Steven produces a cross, clearance made by Michael Nelson.

37:37

Corner taken by Gary Mackay-Steven from the left by-line to the near post, Danny Racchi manages to make a clearance.

36:34

Barry Douglas shoots direct from the free kick, save made by Kyle Letheren.

36:34 Booking

Booking Caution for Jude Winchester.

36:21

Foul by Jude Winchester on Johnny Russell, free kick awarded.

35:18

Unfair challenge on Liam Kelly by Johnny Russell results in a free kick. Indirect free kick taken by Manuel Pascali.

35:04

Gary Mackay-Steven gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on James Fowler. James Fowler restarts play with the free kick.

32:58

The ball is crossed by John Rankin, volleyed shot by Jon Daly.

31:54

Foul by Jeroen Tesselaar on Jon Daly, free kick awarded. Barry Douglas takes the indirect free kick.

31:03

Borja Perez concedes a free kick for a foul on Gary Mackay-Steven. Gavin Gunning takes the indirect free kick.

30:22

Foul by Richie Ryan on Danny Racchi, free kick awarded. Indirect free kick taken by Michael Nelson.

28:42

The ball is sent over by Liam Kelly, clearance made by Gavin Gunning.

27:19

The referee blows for offside. Indirect free kick taken by Kyle Letheren.

25:57

Centre by Liam Kelly, Shot from close in by Borja Perez misses to the left of the goal.

20:29

Jon Daly produces a right-footed shot from close range that goes over the bar.

19:53

Unfair challenge on Keith Watson by Jude Winchester results in a free kick. Willo Flood takes the indirect free kick.

19:37

The ball is swung over by Jon Daly, Ryan O'Leary manages to make a clearance.

16:36

Johnny Russell fouled by Ryan O'Leary, the ref awards a free kick. Indirect free kick taken by Willo Flood, Johnny Russell takes a shot.

16:00

Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Danny Racchi from the right by-line, clearance made by Sean Dillon.

15:40

Liam Kelly takes a shot. John Rankin gets a block in.

14:02

Inswinging corner taken by Danny Racchi from the left by-line.

14:02 Substitution

Substitution Gary Harkins leaves the field to be replaced by Jude Winchester.

11:24

Borja Perez takes a shot. Sean Dillon gets a block in.

7:29

Richie Ryan fouled by Manuel Pascali, the ref awards a free kick. Willo Flood takes the free kick.

7:09

Barry Douglas crosses the ball.

6:25

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on John Rankin by Liam Kelly. Richie Ryan restarts play with the free kick.

5:36

The referee blows for offside. Kyle Letheren takes the indirect free kick.

4:50

Foul by Borja Perez on Sean Dillon, free kick awarded. Indirect free kick taken by Sean Dillon.

4:11

The ball is swung over by Keith Watson.

3:27

Unfair challenge on Borja Perez by Keith Watson results in a free kick. Indirect free kick taken by Manuel Pascali.

1:05

Unfair challenge on Liam Kelly by Gary Mackay-Steven results in a free kick. Ryan O'Leary restarts play with the free kick.

0:00

The referee starts the match.

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