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AFC - Match Report
match report 2021-22 fixture list
Scottish Premiership 
01/12/2021
 
Aberdeen 2 - 0 Livingston
Kick Off:  7:45 PM   Hedges 23, Bates 75.        
Attendance: 6,295 (Visitors: 49)
Venue: Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen
Dons back to winning ways
A solid, professional display from back to front put the Dons back on track as they completed a comprehensive and well deserved victory over Livingston.

Aberdeen made two changes from the side beaten at Celtic Park on Sunday, with Dylan McGeouch out through injury and Jack Gurr dropping to the bench. Funso Ojo returned from injury and Jay Emmanuel-Thomas returned to the starting XI against his former club. Gary Woods and Connor McLennan were also back on the bench, Tom Ritchie and Matty Longstaff missing out.

There were also two changes for Livingston with Jack McMillan and Cristian Montano dropping out in favour of Ayo Obileye and Jackson Longridge.

Winter had certainly arrived at Pittodrie on a bracing night under the lights, the sleet and snow swirling in a blustery wind as the players took to the field. The game took time to warm up in the conditions before Scott Brown fired a swerving shot just wide of goal from the edge of the box after good possession from the Dons in the eighth minute.

David Bates and Anderson were having a ding dong in the early minutes and the former Aberdeen striker was lucky not to get booked after shoving Bates to the ground in the 14th minute.

There were huge appeals for an Aberdeen penalty on the break in the 17th minute. Joe Lewis hurled the ball out to get Lewis Ferguson on the run. He found Ryan Hedges and as he looked to square the ball for Emmanuel-Thomas, the ball clearly struck Omeonga on the arm, well away from his side.

As the first half reached halfway, Aberdeen were really turning up the wick and they took a fully deserved lead on 23 minutes. Emmanuel-Thomas fed Christian Ramirez in the centre circle and he slid a neat pass into the path of Hedges. Driving forward, cutting in from the right, the Livingston defence kept backing off, inviting him to club a low left foot shot from 15 yards just inside the post.

The Welsh international almost made it two from a lovely move down the right on 35 minutes, exchanging passes with Ramirez before bursting into the box and firing off another shot from a dozen yards, Stryjek just able to turn this one around the post with is leg.

A great run from Marley Watkins, dancing past several challenges, ended with him crossing just beyond Ramirez on 40 minutes as Aberdeen went looking for that all important second goal. A deflected Jonny Hayes cross then fell kindly for Watkins a couple of minutes later, but his snapshot on the turn was fielded by the goalkeeper.

HALF-TIME: ABERDEEN 1 LIVINGSTON 0

Two changes for Livi at the break, Shinnie and Hamilton replacing Obileye and Anderson. Immediately upon the restart, there was a heavy challenge between Ojo and Longridge, Longridge booked after both had received treatment.

Aberdeen should have made it two with a well crafted move on 53 minutes. Emmanuel-Thomas won the ball on halfway and found Ramirez. He slid the ball into the run of Hedges but he couldn't quite get the ball out of his feet and the chance went begging. Livingston were more attack minded in the second half but it meant the Dons were looking a threat on the break.

Longridge took a chunk out of Hedges as he tried to clear on the edge of the box on the hour and, after taking a moment to think about it, the referee produced a second yellow and Livi were down to ten men. They quickly withdrew Forrest who was replaced by Penrice.

Livi continued to press when they could though, and Bailey speared in an effort that wasn't too far away on 66 minutes, the angle too tight for him to get it on target.

The lead was doubled on 75 minutes. Hayes curled in a free-kick from wide on the left touchline and Bates swooped down upon it six yards out to sweep in a striker's finish, first time with the left foot, registering his first goal in a red shirt.

Watkins was in behind three minutes later, following a lopping Hayes all forward, but his finish was weak as he stretched for the ball and the score remained 2-0. The Dons made their first change on 80 minutes, Watkins replaced by Niall McGinn.

McGinn was quickly in the action, hooking the ball into Ramirez after receiving a good ball from Emmanuel-Thomas, but the American couldn't quite get enough on the ball at the near post. McGinn was in again on 83 minutes but he put this effort over the bar. Ramirez then made way for the return of McLennan and, seconds later, Hedges limped off, Austin Samuels on in his place.

Emmanuel-Thomas tested Stryjek on 92 minutes, receiving the ball with his back to goal on the edge of the box, holding off the defender to turn and get a shot away that the 'keeper handled comfortably as the game came to a close.

Aberdeen Teamsheet:  Lewis, McCrorie, Watkins (McGinn 80), Brown, Ramirez (McLennan 84), Hedges (Samuels 85), Emmanuel-Thomas, Ojo, Hayes, Ferguson, Bates.

Unused Subs: Woods, Jenks, Gurr, Campbell.

Bookings:

Livingston Teamsheet:  Stryjek, Devlin, Fitzwater, Obileye (v 46), Parkes, Holt, Omeonga, Longridge, Bailey, Forrest (Penrice 64), Anderson (Hamilton 46)

Unused substitutes: Maley, McMillan, Sibbald, Panayiotou

Bookings:  Longridge 47,   Longridge 61  Longridge 61

Referee: Craig Napier

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