Aberdeen 1-1 Saints

Saturday 14th September

Saints continued their good run of form at Pittodrie this afternoon as they fought back to earn a well deserved point against Aberdeen. In their previous nine league games in the Granite City Saints had only suffered two defeats.

The hosts took the lead just before the half an hour mark as Ryan Hedges broke the deadlock with a low strike.

However, Saints responded and found themselves level 2 minutes before half time as Michael O’Halloran’s deflected shot squirmed past Joe Lewis and into the bottom corner of the net.

Saints created the better chances during the second half and thought they had been awarded a penalty on 63 minutes as Matty Kennedy and Andrew Considine clashed in the box and referee Steven McLean pointed to the spot. However, following a discussion with the Main Stand assistant the referee reversed his decision.

Then deep into added on time the hosts almost snatched all 3 points as they were awarded a free kick but Zander Clark made a terrific save as Lewis Ferguson’s free kick took a wicked deflection off the wall.

Next up for Saints is a home game against Rangers next Sunday, kick off 12:15pm

MATCH REPORT

Following last weekend’s international break Saints returned to action this afternoon as they made the trip to the north-east to take on Aberdeen at Pittodrie. There were three changes to the Saints starting eleven from the side that lost 1-0 Kilmarnock a fortnight ago as new signings Anthony Ralston and Jason Holt made their debuts whilst Stevie May made his first start for the club since returning from Aberdeen last month. They replaced Wallace Duffy, Liam Craig and Chris Kane. After comfortably seeing off Ross County 3-0 at Pittodrie before the international break Derek McInnes chose to go with the same starting eleven this afternoon.

Ali McCann got the match underway for Saints on a blustery afternoon and it was Tommy Wright’s side who created the first chance of the match after 4 minutes. It was a good move forward by Saints as McCann did well to switch the play. The ball eventually fell to Scott Tanser who was wide on the left and he delivered a good ball into the box which picked out Murray Davidson however, the Saints midfielder couldn’t get his header on target.

The next chance of the match fell again to Davidson after some good play by Matty Kennedy, who did well to get the ball into the danger area, however, the Saints midfielder again put his effort the wrong side of the post.

Despite the promising start for Saints the Dons were still a threat and they were within inches of taking of taking the lead on 17 minutes. Some good passing by the hosts saw the ball fall to Greg Leigh out wide on the left and he delivered a right-footed cross which picked out Sam Cosgrove and the Aberdeen striker saw his header loop over Zander Clark before crashing off the post. A big left off for Saints.

It was proving to be an even contest with both sides creating chances but it was the hosts who would take the lead on 28 minutes. A clearance header by Anthony Ralston was picked up by Leigh and he powered his way forward before seeing his pass take a deflection off Lewis Ferguson and the ball broke to Ryan Hedges who coolly slotted low past Clark.

That goal gave Aberdeen confidence and they went in search of a second as on 34 minutes the ball broke to Niall McGinn but he sent his wild shot well over Clark’s goal.

However, Saints looked to bounce back and on 37 minutes some good passing saw the ball eventually fall at the feet of Matty Kennedy and he cut inside from the left before having a shot that didn’t trouble Joe Lewis as it went high into the Richard Donald Stand.

Tommy Wright’s side continued to press and they found themselves level on 43 minutes as following a good period of ball retention McCann made a great pass to Scott Tanser. The left back then cut the ball back to Michael O’Halloran whose low shot took a deflection off Andrew Considine before squirming past Joe Lewis and into the bottom left-hand corner of the net.

Then as the match entered 1 minute of additional time the hosts were claiming for a penalty as Cosgrove and Saints captain Jason Kerr clashed in the box but referee Steven McLean waved play on.

3 minutes into the second half Saints were awarded a free kick in a promising position following a foul on Kennedy by Funso Ojo. It was taken by Stevie May however, his delivery into the Dons box was well held by Lewis.

Then a couple of minutes later Saints won a corner after a shot from Jason Holt was deflected over. The corner was taken by Holt and his delivery was picked out Davidson whose header were narrowly wide of Lewis’ goal.

It was a positive start to the second half for Saints and another good move on 54 minutes saw them drive forward through Kennedy who then slipped the ball into the path of Holt. The on-loan Rangers midfielder then setup the advancing Davidson who shot at goal was turned behind for a corner from which Liam Gordon headed wide.

Saints were looking dangerous going forward and just after the hour mark Kennedy picked up a slack pass by McGinn and passed to O’Halloran who advanced forward at speed before slipping the ball back to the Saints winger. Kennedy then delivered an inviting ball into the box which was turned behind for a corner by Leigh.

On 63 minutes Steven McLean awarded Saints a penalty after Kennedy and Considine clashed in the box. However, after McLean had consulted the Main Stand assistant he reversed his decision.

Then 10 minutes later Saints were appealing for another penalty as Jason Holt sent a free kick deep into the Aberdeen box and Davidson went down after clashing with Cosgrove however, Steven McLean was not interested as he waved play on.

Saints were creating the better chances during the second half and on 84 minutes McCann went on a dangerous run into the box but Lewis Ferguson got back to see the ball out for goal kick.

Then deep into the 3 minutes of additional time Derek McInnes’ men almost snatch all three points. The Dons had been awarded a free kick 30 yards from goal following a foul by McCann on Ferguson. The midfielder took the free kick himself and his effort took a wicked deflection off the Saints wall but Clark made an excellent save as he clawed the ball away to ensure that Saints went back down the road to Perth with a point.

Aberdeen: Lewis, Vyner, Devlin, Considine, Leigh, Ojo (Wilson 80), Ferguson, Bryson (Gallagher 56), McGinn (McLennan 66), Hedges, Cosgrove

Unused Substitutes: Cerny (GK), Logan, Anderson, Main

Booked: None

Scorer: Hedges (28)

Saints: Clark, Ralston, Kerr, Gordon, Tanser, O’Halloran (Wright 77), McCann, Davidson, Holt, Kennedy (Wotherspoon 90), May (Hendry 83)

Unused Substitutes: Parish (GK), Vihmann, Duffy, Swanson

Booked: Gordon, Ralston

Scorer: O’Halloran (43)

Referee: Steven McLean

Attendance: 13,272 (373 Saints fans)

Match Report by Daryl Scott

Picture: Matty Kennedy and Ryan Hedges challenge for the ball