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Match Preview | St Mirren v Aberdeen

January 24, 2020 3:30 pm Author: Aberdeen FC
Match Preview | St Mirren v Aberdeen


Competition: Ladbrokes Premiership
Match: St Mirren v Aberdeen
Venue: The Simple Digital Arena
Kick Off: 12.30pm
TV Coverage: RedTV International and Sky Sports Football

The manager sat down with the media this afternoon at Cormack Park to look ahead to Sunday’s match with St Mirren.

Motherwell Game

“Having watched the game back and having got the stats from the game it reinforced a lot of what I thought. We passed the ball well; we controlled the game. We lost such a poor goal defensively and it gave Motherwell something to hold onto.

“They held onto it admirably, they defended well but those attacking areas we had umpteen crosses, more than we have had in home game in recent times.

“We need to try and bring more creativity, more speed to our play at times and certainly carry more goal threat.

“We were the better team in the game, but we didn’t get the result.

“I listened to Liam Donnelly’s comments and he said that they didn’t play at their best and they had to defend well, and he is absolutely right.

“In the key moments in the game we had more chances to score goals than Motherwell did, but they punished us for a poor defensive set up and not taking responsibility.

“In the game there was a lot of what we did right and that is what I am concentrating on and reinforcing to my players that if we keep working like that and doing the right things and if we can add a bit in the final third then hopefully we can make a game the other night a three point game.

“I am hoping that we can add someone else before Sunday’s game and hopefully that can help us.

“When you become Aberdeen manager and players, if you lose home games then boos from the supporters is what happens. The performance wasn’t as poor as people were saying.

“The result is everything and for me and it was a big game, but we still have enough big games ahead of us to achieve what we want to achieve and that is to get into Europe and into that third spot.

“It was a disappointing night. If you don’t get the result that is what happens. It is like at any big club but when you lose a home game playing and managing Aberdeen that is what happens.

“We had a total contrast in atmosphere the other night from the Dumbarton game and that is not a criticism of the supporters, I think there was about 12,500 there the other night. They realised it was an important game. There was no doubt it was quieter than it was against Dumbarton.

“The supporters know that they are there to try and help the team and they look to get behind the team as often as they can.

“If there not happy with what they see on the pitch and they are not happy with the result on the pitch then that is what comes.

“We need players who deal with that side of it and take responsibility. I have always tried to bring in players who can deal with that expectation, deal with that demand and deal with that situation when you are losing at home that you still have the confidence and the responsibility to get on the ball. I thought we had that.

“The most important stat is the goals. No one can question my players effort. They tried everything to try and get a result. We tried to make the necessary changes to try and be more attacking and it helped matters in the game.

“Ultimately, we should have one or two penalties, I thought we should have done far more with our attacking possession. When you lose a home game you have to deal with the fallout from it.

“We don’t like where we are in the league. We want to be higher. Third for us is where we want to try and be. There is no guarantee for that.

“Ourselves and Motherwell have been consistent enough, despite our injuries to get ourselves up there but we want to try and push for more.

“In this second half of the season, hopefully with the additions that we make can hopefully push us for third place and to progress in the Scottish Cup.”

Transfer Update

“I am hopeful that we can have someone in who can help us in place for Sunday.

“There are lots of players that we are looking at.

“There have been enquires and conversations about one or two of our players but there have been no bids as far as I am aware. There is nothing that is going to scare us about losing any of our players.

Dylan McGeouch

“We weren’t quite sure if Dylan had 90 minutes in him but the competitor in him and taking the responsibility that we just spoke about, no one did it more than Dylan.

“His passing was a bit loose at times when he gets into fatigue and a bit tired. He showed how neat, tidy and how cute he is in possession and how he can nudge that ball about.

“I have got a high regard for Motherwell’s midfield, but I thought we did very well in the middle of the park. Liam Donnelly was very good for them, but I thought we had control in the game for large parts of the game.

“McGeough’s performance was very good on top of his performance against Dumbarton.


“We have not had our problems this season due to injuries. I have had to play wingers in midfield, have had to play defenders in there. I actually take a lot of comfort and confidence that we have proper midfielders in there competing.

“Bryson is maybe only three weeks away from full training, he is progressing well.

“Dean Campbell because of the injuries we have had has had a lot of game time.

“All of a sudden from only having Dean as our recognised midfielder at times and Ferguson has taken a lot of responsibility as well. Hopefully in a few weeks’ time we can have five recognised centre midfield players.

“What it does do it allows you to get a bit more control in games and that was in evidence the other night.

“In terms of having a strong midfield in there and good options it is what it should be for an Aberdeen team.

“I expect criticism. My boys are honest boys. We don’t do what we have done for the last seven years without having an honesty and a good work ethic. We know how we work, and it normally gets us to a level of performance. The level of performance was good the other night for the majority of the game.

“It needs to be better in that final third.

“My motivation is for my team and players to do well and it always has been.

“Nobody is more motivated to see Aberdeen succeed than myself.

Team News

“The same four longer term injuries are still out: Scott Wright, Craig Bryson, Zak Vyner and Greg Leigh. James Wilson is still out, we thought he would’ve made it.

Ethan Ross

“It has been a bit mixed for him if I am being honest. They are playing tonight against Dundee and it is a good chance for him to impress in front of the TV cameras.

“He has no divine right to go down there and get game time. That is the challenge for any of our young players who go out on loan. The Championship is a good level to test himself. He is good enough and has enough personality about him to go and show his capabilities.”

So Far This Season

The Dons have faced the Paisley outfit twice this season with both teams winning a game apiece. In the first meeting in a rain-soaked Paisley it was the home side who came out on top thanks to a first half strike form Ilkay Durmus. The two sides met at Pittodrie at the end of November with the Dons winning 2-1. Sam Cosgrove opened the scoring early in the first half before Jonathan Obika equalised for the away side. Niall McGinn scored what turned out to be the eventual winner not long after the restart, but Aberdeen had Joe Lewis to thank who saved a late penalty from Tony Andreu to keep the three points in the North East.

The Game That Was

29/12/2007: Scottish Premier League: St Mirren 0-1 Aberdeen: Love Street

Aberdeen saw out 2007 with victory over St Mirren at Love Street. In a largely forgettable game, it was substitute Steve Lovell who grabbed the only goal of the game when he seized on a mistake from Alan Reid and slotted the ball past St Mirren keeper Chris Smith. The win took the Dons above Hibs in the table and level on points with Dundee United.

Dons Line Up: Langfield, Smith (Lovell), Foster, Severin, Mair, Byrne, Young (Aluko), Nicholson, Miller, Smith, Clark.


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Line ups

Sunday stalemate in Paisley

January 26, 2020 2:59 pm Author: Chris Anderson
Sunday stalemate in Paisley


SPFL Premiership | Sunday 26th January 2020 | Simple Digital Arena | Referee- Don Robertson
Att – 5,302

The Dons again failed to turn plenty of possession – and 11 corners – into goals as they collected a point at St Mirren in a game that ended in a goalless stalemate. However, for the second time this season in Paisley, they were denied what looked a stonewall penalty.

After losing 1-0 to Motherwell in midweek, Aberdeen made just the one change to the starting team, new signing Matty Kennedy coming straight into the side in place of Jon Gallagher, who was on the bench. After Motherwell were held to a goalless draw by Hibs yesterday, the Dons would close to within two points of third place with victory at St Mirren.

Following their 1-0 defeat at Ibrox in midweek, St Mirren made two changes, Tony Andreu and Ilkay Durmus coming in for McGinn and Magennis. St Mirren are in 10th, five points clear of Hearts at the bottom and one above Hamilton in the play-off spot.

The game opened on a greasy surface in a cold, blustery wind and after the hosts won a first minute corner that came to nothing, from there it took time to settle as the players tried to get to grips with that breeze.

Heavy rain over night in the Paisley area had left heavy underfoot conditions and in the opening stages both sets of players were taking some time to adjust.

A long ball from Joe Lewis caused chaos at the other end in the ninth minute, Sam Cosgrove battling for the ball on the edge of the area before being bundled over, but no free-kick was given.

Matty Kennedy’s first involvement was a positive one as he helped win a first Aberdeen corner in the 11th minute following a bizarre clearance from Famewo from inside his own area. Niall McGinn fired it into the near post, Ash Taylor making a darting run to get on the end of it but mistiming his header and directing it wide from a tight angle. Taylor was being marked by Sam Foley who had been injured moments before and the Aberdeen centre half might feel he could have done better.

More errors at the back almost gifted Aberdeen a chance in the 13th minute, a poor ball from Hladky to Famewo giving McGinn a shot at goal inside the box, the defender recovering well to block. Two corners followed, St Mirren riding their luck to clear both.

The Dons were dominating possession by now, knocking the ball around with ease as St Mirren had to retreat further and further, defending in numbers. Another terrible clearance from Hladky almost got the Dons in in the 23rd minute, McGinn spearing in a low cross from the left, Hladky atoning for his error by just getting to the ball ahead of Cosgrove.

MacPherson took the game’s first yellow card in the 24th minute after fouling Lewis Ferguson on halfway. The game began to open up and became more end to end and in the 28th minute, Cosgrove was hauled down in the box by a rugby tackle from McCarthy off the ball which, incomprehensibly was ignored by the officials, despite looking like a clear penalty.

Another corner was cleared away on the half hour but Aberdeen recycled it well, the ball dropping for Scott McKenna in the edge of the box, his drive at goal deflected just over the top for a sixth corner which St Mirren again dealt with.

The game by now had become very scrappy and a real physical battle. The lack of any structure was suiting the home side as they tried to hit on the break.

St Mirren should have been in front in the 41st minute, Dylan McGeouch playing a ball back to his goalkeeper from halfway, failing to notice Obika lurking in between them. Obika advanced and smacked the ball past Lewis from the edge of the box but it thumped against the far post and came back to McKenna to clear. That was the last meaningful action of a half which the Dons dominated but where the hosts had the best chance to break the deadlock.


The players were greeted with a quick shower of the rain that had been threatening all afternoon at the start of the second half, doing nothing to improve the conditions.

The hosts were first to have a look at goal, Durmus driving over from 30 yards after collecting a loose ball in midfield, never threatening Lewis. Andreu had a better sight in the 53rd minute as a Durmus cross broke to him off Taylor but in the end, it was an easy low take for Lewis.

Corner number nine for the Dons came in the 57th minute, McGinn out on the left, Cosgrove getting to it but the ball lobbed up for a simple save for Hladky. A dangerous cross in from the left from Kennedy caused Hladky more trouble two minutes later, saving well at the feet of Andrew Considine.

Just past the hour, Funso Ojo went down after being on the wrong end of a heavy collision with Famewo in the midfield, receiving treatment for a couple of minutes before resuming.

St Mirren hit on the break in the 69th minute, Obika picking out Durmus on the left, his vicious, dipping shot from the left edge of the box going just over the bar as the hosts began to threaten more.

Better followed from the Dons, neat passing play ending with Ferguson stubbing a shot just wide as he tried to get the ball out of his feet. The first change of the game followed immediately thereafter, Ryan Hedges replacing McGeouch in the 72nd minute.

A real scramble in the Buddies’ box followed an Aberdeen free-kick in the 74th minute, the hosts getting it clear by luck as much as judgement, MacPherson handling an overhead kick from McKenna in the midst, though it was purely accidental, the defender unable to get his hand out of the way from close range.

More decent pressure came from the Dons in the 79th minute involving Hedges, Cosgrove and Ferguson but nobody could apply a finishing touch and the chance petered out once more, the story of the second half of the season thus far. It was the same a minute later, Hedges’ drive from 25 yards slicing wide. Andreu was then replaced by Cooke for the hosts with ten minutes to go.

Bruce Anderson became Aberdeen’s second change in the 85th minute, McGinn making way for the striker. Ojo came close for the Dons two minutes later, his 25 yarder pushed away by Hladky, nobody able to get onto the loose ball ahead of the goalkeeper.

Into injury time and St Mirren introduced Paul McGinn for Durmus to run down the clock, the game ending seconds later in another disappointing stalemate.



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