The 3-0 scoreline from Peterhead’s visit to East End Park on Saturday told far less than half the story from what was a bad-blooded affair.
The teams had met only once before in August 2008 when they were foiled 2-0 by the Pars, but the weekend encounter was certainly one the Blue Toon won’t forget.
It was three first half red cards rather than three second half goals which proved to be the talking points.
Peterhead FC bore the brunt of referee Greg Aitken’s wrath during Saturday’s game, with all three of Jamie Redman, Steven Noble and Jordon Brown sent off.
This was the first time the two sides have ever met in league football and it is unlikely to be a game that is ever matched for its vitriol in the coming encounters.
Jamie Redman saw red after only 15 minutes for a challenge on Josh Falkingham deemed by the man in black as dangerous.
Captain, and usually level-headed left back Steven Noble was sent for an early bath moments before the break for a tackle on Falkingham, later described by the Pars player as one he would ‘be proud of’.
Jordon Brown was given his marching orders for a push in the ensuing brawl.
After the break the eight men of Peterhead stood tall for a quarter of an hour before Falkingham - again at the heart of the action - found the top corner.
Gozie Ugwu and James Thomas added to Blue Toon boss Jim McInally’s misery before the end but it should be said that those who remained on the park did an admirable job of limiting the talents of arguably this league’s top team.
McInally opted not to give his views on the performance of the referee to the waiting Press pack after Saturday’s game.
However, assistant Davie Nicholls said: “That’s football for you these days.
“You’re not allowed to tackle anyone. The first red card wasn’t even a foul.
“It was the perfect tackle, he got the full ball,” he said.
Peterhead will take on Ayr at Balmoor on Saturday when it is hoped McInally’s team will fair better.They will then make the long trip south to Stranraer the following week.