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AFC - Match Report
match report 2012-13 fixture list
Aberdeen 0 - 0 Ross County
Kick Off:  3:00 PM          
Attendance: 14,010 (Visitors: 747)
Venue: Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen
Stalemate as Dons and County Draw a Blank

Neither team could find the back of the net in this tight encounter and despite the Dons having the better of possession they couldn't make the breakthrough against a stubborn Ross County side. Early in the second half it looked like the Dons might make their superiority count but the game gradually fizzled out and both sides had to settle for a point.

Boss Craig Brown kept faith with the team that were defeated by a single goal to nil the previous weekend at Parkhead. That included keeper Langfield who was at fault for that lone goal that gifted Celtic all three points. Mark Reynolds started on the bench on his return to Pittodrie on a season long loan deal from Sheffield Wednesday.

Both teams started brightly and exchanged periods of decent possession but it was the home side who created the first opportunity when Vernon found Stephen Hughes but he lashed his shot into the side netting. A short while later the Dons won their first corner but it was wasted and launched straight into the arms of Michael Fraser.

abe_rcounty_120811_03Ross County brought a large travelling support with them and they were appealing for a penalty on 7 minutes when their first corner was launched into the Dons box. Referee Euan Norris waived away the appeals- much to the annoyance of the County support.

Jonny Hayes should have capitalised on 10 minutes but his final ball, when he had players in red shirts in the box, was disappointing and Fraser grasped firmly.

County then created a great chance when they cut open the Dons defence but Sam Morrow couldn't take advantage and slammed the ball into the side netting when he should have scored.

The Dons were at times finding themselves in potentially decent positions but all too often the final ball was wasted, Gary Naysmith and Jonny Hayes being particularly guilty of this on a couple of occasions. Moments later though a cross into the box was nearly converted but Vernon couldn't quite make up enough ground and then Ross Tokley put in a great challenge to deny Gavin Rae a chance to put the Dons ahead.

Ryan Jack was one of the standout players in the previous game, and started well in this one but found himself yellow carded on 21 minutes by referee Norris for a foul on Paul Lawson.

Stephen Hughes was also hugely influential in the previous game and he was once again imposing himself on this one.On 25 minutes, Hayes found Hughes who cut inside in the box but his shot was straight at Michael Fraser.

Fraser was again called into action on 27 minutes when Jonny Hayes played a superb cross into the box and the Staggies goalkeeper had to look sharp to punch away the danger. On the half hour mark, Hughes released Gary Naysmith down the left but the former Scotland International could only blast the ball behind for a goal kick then there were options in the box.

Gavin Rae then shot wildly over the bar as the Dons continued to apply the pressure on the County goal. Soon after, great play from Isaac Osbourne was nearly rewarded but his ball into the box wouldn't fall for anyone with Michael Fraser looking nervous. McGinn then had an ambitious shot from long range saved comfortably by the County goalkeeper.abe_rcounty_120811_01

The visitors didn't create too many chances in the first period but Richard Brittan did give Aberdeen a scare- fortunately he shot wide from inside the box when he should have scored.

The final chance of the half fell to the Dons and again it was the influential Hughes who set up Hayes- but his shot went inches wide of the post.

HT 0-0

Aberdeen started the half brightly with plenty of attacking intent but with little end product. Jack did have a shot at goal in the opening few minutes but it went wide of the right hand post.

abe_rcounty_120811_02Gavin Rae should have scored on 51 minutes after a sublime cross by Gary Naysmith but the midfielder headed the ball down into the ground and it bounced wide of the post.

On 54 minutes the ball was loose in the County box and no one was there to capitalise for the Dons yet again while up the other end Russell Anderson had to make a great tackle to stop the advancing Sam Morrow from causing the Dons any problems.

Good play from Hayes and Naysmith down the left then caused problems when the latter swung a dangerous cross into the box that was headed away for a corner.

abe_rcounty_120811_04On 67 minutes there was a setback for the Dons when Niall McGinn went down in the County box and had to be stretchered off. Craig Brown sent on Ryan Fraser in his place.

Soon after referee Norris waived away please for a penalty from the Aberdeen fans but the ref did then award the Dons a free kick in a dangerous position moments later. Gavin Rae left it to Hayes but the shot took a deflection and went out for a corner which the County goalkeeper collected from Ryan Fraser's effort.

There were further cries for a penalty from the Red Army when Isaac Osbourne crossed into the box towards Scott Vernon. The crowds appealed for handball but in the end referee Norris adjudged that Vernon had been the one who handled and booked the striker.

Ryan Jack was then replaced by Josh Magennis on 74 minutes as the Dons tried to find an equaliser. Hayes soon cut in towards the box but fired wide under pressure and moments later the Dons wasted yet another opportunity when Hayes' free kick was hit straight at a Ross County player- much to the frustration of the majority of the 14,010 fans around Pittodrie.

Craig Brown made another change on 78 minutes when Peter Pawlett replaced Johnny Hayes.

Ross Tokley was lucky to remain on the park on 83 minutes when he got caught out by the pace of Ryan Fraser and lunged into a dreadful challenge on the youngster. From the resultant free kick Scott Vernon had the chance to claim all three points for the Dons but somehow managed only to find Michael Fraser in the County goal.

The Highlanders could have won it themselves however when, for the only time in the game, they caught the Dons defence sleeping but luckily their attackers couldn't make up enough ground and Naysmith cleared for Aberdeen.

The Dons finished the game on the front foot but various crosses into the box continued to evade the strikers and the game finished goalless.

Aberdeen Teamsheet:  Langfield, Jack (Magennis 74), Anderson, Considine, Naysmith, Hayes (Pawlett 79), Osbourne, Rae, Hughes, Vernon, McGinn (Fraser 66).

Unused Subs: Brown, Reynolds, Clark, Milsom.

Bookings:  Jack (22),  Vernon (74).

Ross County Teamsheet:  Michael Fraser, Marc Fitzpatrick, Grant Munro, Scott Boyd, Ross Tokely, Paul Lawson (Russell Duncan 52), Colin McMenamin, Richard Brittain, Iain Vigurs, Martin Scott, Sam Morrow (Mark Corcoran 64).

Unused Subs: 52 Mihael Kovacevic, Archie MacPhee, Steven Ross, Sean McCarthy, Adam Porritt.

Bookings:  Ross Tokely (81),   Colin McMenamin (90).

Referee: Euan Norris

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