Dundee United made it an excellent week at home with a second consecutive single-goal victory – this time at the expense of Falkirk.
Striker Thomas Mikkelsen scored their seventh-minute winner to open up a clear five-point lead over fifth-placed Greenock Morton, with still a game in hand.
The decisive moment arrived as Willo Flood stole goalkeeper Robbie Thomson’s clearance and set-up the Dutchman to slot into the net.
Grant Gillespie next struck just wide for the hosts, although Stewart Murdoch blocked from Louis Longridge before Paul McMullan called Bairns keeper Thomson into action.
There were shouts for a penalty upon the restart when Mikkelsen appeared to be shoved inside the area following good approach work from McMullan.
Alex Jakubiak then sliced wide at the opposite end before keeper Deniz Mehmet denied Longridge after substitute Matty Smith’s header back had dropped short.
McMullan later screwed another opportunity wide – but it didn’t stop his colleagues from taking vital maximum points.
Dundee United: Mehmet, Ralston, Murdoch, Mohsni, Robson (Scobbie 88), Gillespie, Flood, McMullan (Fraser 90), McDonald, King (Smith 77), Mikkelsen
subs (unused): Edjenguele, Briels, Lewis, Glass
Goals: Mikkelsen (7)
Falkirk: Thomson, Muirhead, Watson, McGhee, Tumilty (Kidd 67), Welsh (McKee 67), Sibbald, Taiwo, Robson (Grant 36), Longridge, Jakubiak
subs (unused): Harris, Hazard, O’Hara, Blair
Ref: C. Thomson