The big day out for 13,000 Aberdeen fans turned into a damp squib as the Dons crashed out of the League Cup. The Dons were 3-0 down after twenty minutes and find themselves 4-0 down at the break. Aberdeen appeared to freeze as they failed to get to grips with the match and with only six minutes on the clock a Commons cross drifted over Langfield and nestled in the net. Poor defending at a corner gifted ex-Don Charlie Mulgrew a second and in the 20th minute before a Rogne header beat Langfield. Stokes added a fourth from the spot, but in the second half Aberdeen showed a huge improvement. They were rewarded with a goal from Vernon and were unlucky mot to add to that. However the damage was done in the first half and Aberdeen must be rueing the start they made.
Aberdeen kicked off, but it was Celtic who threatened first before Langfield claimed the ball. In the 4th minute Hartley tried to release Vernon, but the striker was in an offside position. A minute later Celtic were back on the attack and won the first corner of the match. The ball was half-cleared and from 20 yards Commons swung in a cross, which floated over the head of Langfield and into the net with only six minutes on the clock.
Aberdeen looked overawed at this stage, but they tried to get back into the match. A forward pass from Diamond just failed to find Vernon then Maguire broke, but was outnumbered. Matters took a turn for the worse in the 10th minute when Celtic won another corner and made it 2-0. The ball was whipped across and nodded on before Mulgrew headed in from 3 yards. Aberdeen almost instantly hit back as Vernon was released, but he was denied by the woodwork with Forster beaten.
Aberdeen forced their way forward again in the 15th minute, but Maguire was flagged offside. The Dons appeared to have tightened up a bit, but possibly too late. They certainly needed a goal before the break without conceding. They worked their way forward and won a corner in the 20th minute through Maguire. Unfortunately Forster was able to claim the ball and Celtic moved forward again. Langfield then made a great save from Stokes, but a minute later Aberdeen were 3-0 down when a Rogne header beat the keeper.
A mix up in the 24th minute almost cost Aberdeen another goal when Vujadinovic and Diamond got in a tangle and Langfield had to save the day. A minute later Wilson fired over as the Dons were getting over run. In the 25th minute Milsom had a glimpse of goal, but his shot was charged down. Three minutes later Ryan Jack replaced Vujadinovic just as the Dons were awarded a free kick. Vernon managed to flick the ball on, but there was no one to collect.
On the half hour mark Maguire had a half chance when he got on the end of a Jack cross, but again the effort was blocked. A minute later Langfield fumbled a low shot, but gathered at the second attempt. At the other end Maguire slipped as he tried to cut inside to the Celtic box and there were more problems in the 34th minute when Stokes netted from the spot. This followed the award of a soft free kick on the edge of the box. As the ball was fired in by Stokes it hit Young's raised arm and the same player sent Langfield the wrong way.
Aberdeen won another corner two minutes later, but again Forster easily gathered. McNamee was cautioned in the 38th minute as the Dons cup dream evaporated inside a cold Hampden. A fine move in the 39th minute almost produced a goal as Maguire and Young combined before the keeper blocked Young's effort. The assistant awarded a corner, but referee Thomson over ruled. Aberdeen did force a corner two minutes later and Forster had to punch clear.
Another controversial free kick almost produced a fifth goal as Aberdeen looked to break though Maguire. The youngster took the ball down with his chest and Thomson blew for hand ball. As Maguire argued Celtic took a quick free kick, but the Dons were able to block. Another offside decision denied Aberdeen in the last minute as a miserable first half stuttered to a finish. The big day out for the 13.000 fans had turned into a damp squib as the players trudged off to a chorus of boos.
Celtic started the second half the way they ended the first as Aberdeen were immediately on the back foot. Aberdeen were finally awarded a free kick in the 50th minute and Hartley played the ball short to Milsom, but his effort went tamely wide. A corner two minutes later was wasted, but the Dons were still trying to create. In the 57th minute a great ball from Hartley released Maguire who clearly beat offside, but was flagged as he raced in on goal.
Aberdeen were getting no breaks and this was highlighted just before the hour mark when Maguire went one-on-one with Forster, rounded him and watched in agony as the ball floated inches over. The Dons did finally pull one back two minutes later when Vernon headed home a Milsom free kick. At the other end Celtic won a corner and fired an effort tamely wide before Jack won the Dons another corner that came close to producing a second. The ball was played short, whipped in by Jack and just missed Vernon as Forster punched clear.
Seconds later a quite ridiculous offside call again denied Maguire who was clearly a yard on side when the pass was played. This was a far better display and the fans must be wishing they had started the game like this. Vernon was so close to breaking through in the 70th minute when he had the ball taken off his toe as he latched on to a Young flick. The red army were getting frustrated with the amount of decisions going against their favourites. Two minutes later Vernon broke on the right, cut inside but had his shot blocked.
A minute later Maguire won a corner, but the delivery was poor and the chance wasted. Brown then made a double substitution in the 77th minute as Pawlett and Magennis replaced McNamee and Young. Magennis was in action immediately before being crowded out at the edge of the box. The match had become stale now, but Aberdeen were forced to scramble the ball clear in the 82nd minute as Celtic headed for a cup final appearance. Magennis did well again two minutes later when he forced his way to the bye line before producing a poor cut back.
The Dons finished strongly and another good piece of play in the 85th minute saw Pawlett reach the bye line, but again the cross failed to match the build up play. Vernon should have added a second in the 87th minute when he screwed an effort over the bar from six yards after being set up by good play from Magennis. Then in the final minute Vernon was one-on-one again. He rounded the keeper and his shot was net bound when it was cleared off the line. Two corners quickly followed, but they couldn't force a second consolation.