James McPake dedicated Dundee’s convincing cinch Premiership win over Motherwell to club great Doug Cowie.
Cowie, who has died aged 95, was the club’s record appearance holder in a glittering career at Dens Park.
Manager McPake admitted he spoke of Cowie before the game with his players responding in the right manner, scoring two goals in the first half through Luke McCowan and Danny Mullen with Ryan Sweeney sealing the victory with a third after the break.
McPake said: “I think it was a fitting tribute to the club’s record appearance holder.
“You could feel the atmosphere in the stands before the game. We used it in our team talk for Doug and the result was a fitting tribute to a real legend at this football club.
“First and foremost that’s at the top of our minds and that’s what the win was for.”
McPake had been absent from Dens earlier this week after suffering from illness and he thanked the rest of his staff for preparing the team without him.
He said: “There has to be a special mention to my coaching staff because I haven’t been here for the last two days.
“So maybe I should just stay away and turn up on a Saturday! But credit to them as I have been off ill.”
McPake was understandably pleased with the result and performance but was still irked that the officials had chalked off a goal for offside against Mullen before his strike that counted.
McPake said: “I am annoyed because Danny deserved more than what he got.”
Motherwell boss Graham Alexander was bitterly disappointed, especially as his side approached the game following back-to-back wins over Aberdeen and Hearts.
Alexander said: “Everything we were last week, we weren’t today in all the basics of football.
“I thought we were at 80 per cent and if we think that 80 per cent is good enough then hopefully today we will learn it is not.
“Every single challenge, action and thought process was clearly not good enough and that’s from the start, not just the first goal.
“We didn’t approach the game the way that we did in the previous two.
“The only thing I can look at is mindset. It is not the first time we have thrown in a performance like that against a team that is struggling at the bottom of the league.
“We have seen the heights that this team can reach, last week against Hearts and before that against Aberdeen but we have shown the ugly side of us today.”