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AFC - Match Report
match report 1916-17 fixture list
Div 1 (Old) 
06/01/1917
 
Aberdeen 1 - 0 Ayr United
Kick Off:  2:45 PM   Cruickshank.        
Attendance: 250
Venue: Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen
Ayr United moving much more freely during the first half-hour on the hard ground at Aberdeen, looked like winning, but they seemed to lose heart when Aberdeen popped on a goal, which on play was certainly not deserved. The point had exactly the opposite effect on the local side, who took the upper hand, and held it to the end. The forwards improved beyond recognition. Cruickshank scored Aberdeen's goal. The United were well served by White in goal, Hay and Bell at back, and Waddell at right half. Their forwards finished poorly. The crowd numbered about 3500.

Source: The Scotsman, 8th January 1917

Ayr United opened in most promising style at Pittodrie, but in the end Aberdeen were well woth their one goal win and something more. Up to the time Cruickshank scored - Ambler headed in a cross from Wylie and the inside man got the rebound, Ayr were going rather better than the home lot on the hard, slippery ground, but the goal seemed to take all the heart out of the visitors, and they were well mastered. The change was most evident in the respective attacks, Ayr, fast and clever, becoming erratic, and finishing miserably, and Aberdeen's spasmodic rushes giving place to fast, keen play, which greatly worried the Ayr defence. White, if rather daring and somewhat lucky, saved well; and Bell and Yule, were the other outstanding Ayr men. Anderson and Colman shone in the home defence, and after the "revival" there was not a weak link on the whole side. In the attack, Paton, Ambler, and Wylie were the pick.

Source: Aberdeen Journal, 8th Jauary 1917

 
A possible explanation for the evidently very low turnout at Pittodrie for this game comes from the "Aberdeen Journal" published on 4th January, although the Scotsman's report above disagrees with the number recorded by Jim Rickaby in his book:

AYR UNABLE TO TRAVEL

The Ayr United officials have intimated to the Scottish League that they are unable to get an eleven to travel to Aberdeen at the week-end, and they have accordingly cancelled the match. Even in ordinary circumstances there would have been difficulty in getting leave for the players but this week, after three days' holidays, the employers decline to grant any permission. The majority of the team would require to get off on Friday afternoon, and owing to the altered train conditions, Ayr would not be reached again until Monday. The step would not be taken without serious consideration, but if the League rules regarding employment were to be observed Ayr had no other choice than the one they have taken.

We have yet to track down any newspaper that comments on the size of the crowd, or vene reproted a number, but it is also worth noting that the playing conditions were not good and the weather may have kept people away even if they thought that the game was on.
Aberdeen Teamsheet:  Anderson, Colman, Calder, Perry, Brewster, Robertson, Paton, Cruickshank, Ambler, Cail, Wylie.

Unused Subs:

Bookings:

Ayr United Teamsheet:  White; Bell, Hay; G. R. Waddell, W. Cringan, McLaughlan; R. Cringan, Crosbie, Marshall, Shankly, Yule

Bookings:

Referee: Mr J. Dryburgh, Fife

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