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Raith Rovers 0 - 2 Aberdeen

HT Score: Raith Rovers 0 - 0 Aberdeen

Aberdeen scorers: Goodwillie 64, Taylor 74.

12/07/2015 | KO: 13:00

A Good Workout in the Sun

Aberdeen warmed for Thursday night's Europa league tie against Rijeka with a competitive friendly against Raith Rovers in Kirkcaldy. Ray McKinnon's young side were very well organised throughout and had a number of chances to score in the first half. However Aberdeen controlled the game in the second period, especially when some of the more experienced players came off the bench, and the Dons ran out comfortable winners in the end with the goals coming from Goodwillie and Taylor. It was certainly a very useful 90 minutes for the Dons players.

For the third official pre-season game Derek McInnes fielded a number of youngsters. Scott Brown was in goal with Rose and Quinn in central defence, Storie was at right back with Shinnie at left back. The midfield four were Smith, Robson, Pawlett and Wright with Shankland and Goodwillie partnered up front. Raith Rovers, managed now by ex Don Ray McKinnon, had a side littered with young players who had been with clubs in the SPFL Premiership. The starting XI also included former Aberdeen youngster Mitch Megginson. It is good to see Mitch now back playing full-time football. Paul Quinn led the side out on a warm but slightly breezy day. In the second minute the acting skipper had to come over and cover Megginson after a swift break down the left. The ball then landed at the feet of Craig Wighton and his snap shot was well held by Brown. A minute later Raith forced the first corner and the ball over caused problems.
With the Dons first attack Cammy Smith almost created an opening for Goodwillie on 5 minutes before the Dons then won their first corner. Smith played for the Dons U20s at this ground last season when they beat Dundee United 2-0, the last time the first team played at Stark's Park was back in the Mark McGhee era in February 2010. A late Gary McDonald goal gave Aberdeen a replay in the Scottish Cup but the Dons lost the tie at Pittodrie. How things have changed in five years. On 10 minutes Rovers produced a good move that saw Craigen chip a ball to the back post and Craig Storie did very well to head it behind despite being put under considerable pressure. From the resulting corner Megginson put over a low ball which Kyle Benedictus hit off the post. On 14 minutes Brown had to look very lively to deal with a back pass from Storie, the ever alert Megginson very nearly intercepted. The hurried clearance was played straight back into the box and Craigan put a shot inches past. He probably should have scored and Raith should have been ahead at this point in the contest. On 16 minutes Aberdeen finally created an opening from a brilliant long ball by Robson. Goodwillie managed to get a shot away but Kevin Cuthbert in the Rovers goal made a good block. On 20 minutes Shinnie played the ball down the line for Goodwillie to chase. David showed really good strength to hold off his marker. He then curled a shot to the far corner which had Cuthbert beaten but came back off the cross bar. Then on 22 minutes Pawlett broke at pace. The ball was picked up by Smith in a good area but he blasted his shot over.
On 26 minutes the home side came very close to getting the opener. Good play initially by Megginson and then Craigan saw the ball crossed for Ross Callachan and his first time volley was very well saved by Brown. Then on the half hour mark fine play by Smith saw Cammy put over a good ball. Wright laid it back to Robson who hammered in a shot which was also well saved by Cuthbert. The last fifteen minutes of the first half saw both teams enjoy some good possession without creating anything of note.

The only change at the break saw Hayes swap with Shinnie. At the start of the second half, in now cold conditions, both teams continued to play some nice passing football but there was little in the way of goalmouth action. On 55 minutes Wright, who was now far more involved and playing with confidence, got in behind the defence and he put over a good looking ball but it had just gone out of play. On 57 minutes Hayes put over a ball from the left which Goodwillie flicked up for Shankland, his shot on the turn just went over. On the hour mark Wright, Storie, Shankland, and Rose made way for McLean, Taylor, Flood and Considine. Immediately the Dons stepped it up a level. Flood crossed for Goodwillie who directed a header on target but he could not get enough power on it to beat the keeper. However on 65 minutes Goodwilie did get a goal. Robson battled bravely for the ball on the edge area. Although he was impeded in the act of shooting the ball fell for David in the six yard box and he poked it home.
Aberdeen were now well in control but on 70 minutes a slack ball by McLean allowed Wighton a run in on goal but the on loan Dundee striker was snuffed out by a combination of Quinn and Considine. Hayes, who was looking very good coming forward from the left back spot, was causing real problems every time he drove forward. On 75 minutes he won another corner which Robson played in and Taylor met it perfectly to head home the Dons second. Two minutes later a long throw in was headed goalwards by Goodwillie but again he could not get enough power on it. On 78 minutes Frank Ross replaced Pawlett. With five minutes to go Frank had a chance to score but the extremely talented midfielder got a bit carried away and fluffed his shot.

Raith Rovers Teamsheet
Cuthbert, Thomson, Petrie, Toshney, Benedictus, Callachan, Anderson, McCord, Wigton, Megginson, Craigen. Subs: McKeowan, Vaughan, Matthews, Robertson, Bates, Ford, McGurn, Court, Campbell.
Aberdeen Teamsheet
Brown, Storie (Considine 60), Quinn, Rose (Taylor 60), Shinnie (Hayes 46), Wright (Flood 60), Robson, Pawlett (Ross 77), Smith, Goodwillie, Shankland (McLean 60).

Unused Subs: Ward.
Attendance: 1,359
Venue: Stark's Park, Kirkcaldy
Next Match
27 Apr 2024 / 15:00 / Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen