In a blustery evening at Pittodrie, Aberdeen and Hearts drew a blank with neither side creating many chances. The Dons deserved the win as they were the better side throughout and they could have won it late on when Rob Milsom found himself unchallenged at the back post but in the end both sides settled for a draw after a game devoid of flowing football due to the atrocious conditions.
Aberdeen made two changes to the starting XI that were defeated in Inverness on Christmas Eve. Darren Mackie and Rory Fallon came in for Chris Clark and Josh Magennis, both of who dropped to the bench.
With both sides weighing up the conditions in the opening spell the first real action took place when Youl Mawene fouled Hearts captain Marius Zaliukas just outside the box and referee Brian Winter booked the Frenchmen for the challenge. Hearts failed to take any advantage from the free kick.
Aberdeen's first chance of the match fell to Rory Fallon in 15 minutes. The ball was swung across towards the New Zealander but he couldn't connect with the ball properly and it was a brilliant chance missed. The Don's next chance came courtesy of a good run by Richard Foster down the left side of midfield but the ball was cleared easily by the Hearts defence.
The high winds continued to neglect the game of any real quality play and this was highlighted when Jason Brown's high kick out caught the swirling wind and bounced right back at him.
The Dons were holding the ball far better when playing it along the surface and in 28 minutes Rob Milsom set Richard Foster away down the left and he cut the ball back to Ryan Jack who unleashed a shot towards the Hearts goal. Unfortunately for the home side, Marian Kello was able to make the save, leaping to his left.
Just after the half hour persistent play from Rory Fallon won the Dons a free kick 35 yards from goal. Ricky Foster's resultant kick was nearly met by three Aberdeen players but no one could connect properly and the ball bounced wide of goal.
All this time Hearts were creating very little and Aberdeen looked the likelier team to score. Scott Vernon beat the Hearts offside trap and ran into the box. Looking for options available in the box Vernon swivelled with the ball but couldn't get his shot away and crossed the ball back across the box but no one had arrived and Hearts cleared.Vernon was again in the heart of the action just before half time when his pass to Milsom was sent on to Rob Milsom who freed Darren Mackie down the left side but his cross was disappointing and again Hearts cleared.
The second half began with the Dons now having the advantage of the wind blowing towards the Beach End. And their first chance of the second half was a superb effort from Kari Arnason. Richard Foster rolled a free kick to Arnason but his powerful shot from 25 yards out hit the side netting to the despair of the Red Army, many of who thought the ball was in the net.
Moments later Mawene had to be careful when Andrew Driver broke through the defence but Mawene, on a yellow card, got the slightest of touches to see the ball back through to the grateful clutches of Jason Brown.
Craig Brown made his first change of the evening when Chris Clark was sent on to replace Darren Mackie.
Having tried to use the long throw several times as a weapon in the game, Arnason's latest attempt led to a stramash in the box and the ball eventually fell at the feet of Chris Clark who blazed his volley over the bar. A short while later Arnason's lashed shot went wide of the post, failing to trouble Kello.
Aberdeen still looked the more likely to score and Kello was forced into a save when Isaac Osborne's cross had to be plucked out of the air to stop the impending danger from the Dons attack.
As the disappointing match drew to a close, Rory Fallon was replaced by Josh Magennis but this did little to change the pattern of the game. The Dons, despite dominating the game, created few chances but in the final few moments they should have clinched the three points. Ryan Jack's outstanding cross to the back post was met by Rob Milsom but his header went over the crossbar.
So 2011 ends for the Dons with a goalless draw at home to Hearts in awful weather. A draw was probably a fair result with neither goalkeeper having much to do. The home side now move onto an away game with Dundee United on January 2nd.