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Heart of Midlothian 0 - 0 Aberdeen

HT Score: Heart of Midlothian 0 - 0 Aberdeen

Div 1 (Old)

13/11/1920 | KO:

Aberdeen's Clever Draw

Aberdeen took away a point from Tynecastle which was unwarranted on play. For most of the ninety minutes they were a defensive company, and have to thank their defence, and in particular their custodian, for the sharing of the points. No praise, indeed, is too high for George Anderson, who simply defied the Hearts' team.
On the first half's display Aberdeen were almost as good as their opponents, and if Wilson, Smillie, and Sinclair occasionally bothered Anderson, Kane was also the object of attention from Flanaghan, Connon, and Middleton. The latter pair, indeed, were the bright spots of the Aberdeen forward line, and Porter, the ex Raith Rovers player, was not at all happy in his exchanges with them, while John Wilson had often to come to his assistance.
After the turn-over, however, it was a case of Hearts' forwards versus Aberdeen's defence, and how the Pittodrie men kept the Hearts out is almost a mystery. From all positions Anderson was assailed, but he offered a bold front, and full credit is due to him. In front of him Hutton and Forsyth were harassed, the former doing exceedingly well in trying circumstances. Centre half Milne's height and reach stood him in good stead. Of the others in the Aberdeen side, only Connon, and, in a lesser degree, Flanaghan, are worthy of mention. Hearts were playing below expectations, Birrell, Preston, Nellies, and W. Wilson being the pick of a somewhat disappointing side. The attendance reached 15,000.

Sunday Post, 14th November 1920

Aberdeen have earned a reputation for doing well at Tynecastle, and tradition held good there on Saturday, when they shared in a goalless draw with the Hearts. Unlike the majority of blank games, this was quite an interesting encounter, and to sum up the run of play, it can be said that Aberdeen were superior in the first half and Hearts were on top in the concluding period, but Aberdeen's ascendancy in the earlier stages was scarcely so marked as that of Hearts later. The result did credit to Aberdeen, and especially to the defenders, who, when the Hearts rallied in the second period, successfully withstood a tremendous gruelling. Following upon heavy rains, the ground was in a treacherous state, yet, despite the sodden nature of the pitch, the play was very fast, and considering the conditions, inaccuracies were not so frequent as might have been expected. Hearts were at the disadvantage of having to play against a strong sun in the first half. A cross from Middleton was missed by Birrell early in the game, and Kane just managed to recover before Fisher got in. Porter tested Anderson from long range, and then, after fine work by Smillie and Wilson, Hutton miskicked, the ball landing on the top the net. Aberdeen showed improvement, and forcing work by Connon enabled Middleton to get over several crosses. A foul on Wilson by Hutton just outside the penalty area had the Aberdeen goal in danger, but Forsyth's head popped up opportunely, and Aberdeen were back to the attack, clever tackling and placing by Grosert supplying the basis for good work by the right wing. For a time the Pittodrie players steadily attacked, and Kane's charge had several narrow escapes from crosses by Middleton and Flanaghan the custodian showing great skill in fielding.
Hutton was called upon to take a free kick just outside the penalty line, but Birrell, close to the upright, stopped a terrific drive with his head. Later Rankine just missed with a good first-time drive. In a period of end-to-end play both goals were visited, and corners fell to each side. With the sun in their faces, the Hearts backs often wavered, and had the Aberdeen forwards been able to take advantage of their weakness at this stage there is no saying what effect the goal might 'have had the result.

Fine Defensive Play.

In the second period Aberdeen started as they left off, and shaped like winners, Middleton and Flanaghan getting over some nice balls, but the only shot of note was a good try by Connon from long range. Gradually the Hearts wore down the pressure, and after the opening ten minutes the Pittodrie forwards were never again much in evidence. From that time onwards the Hearts set up such a pressure that it seemed a score was bound to come. It was not so, however, for the Aberdeen defence played a wonderful game. There was period when the Aberdeen goal was bombarded, but Anderson defied all efforts, and repeatedly saved in great style from Wilson, Smillie, and others. He was once beaten by a great shot from Smillie which hit the upright, but the men in front never gave the Tynecastle forwards a second chance, and many shots were charged down. An awkward grounder from Sinclair nearly had the goalkeeper beaten, but he recovered smartly. Birrell, the Hearts' back, joined the attack but the forwards could make no impression upon a defence that was simply here, there, and everywhere, and refused to be beaten. Wilson had some good tries, but everything came alike to Anderson, who received great assistance from his backs. Just on the close, Aberdeen had a difficult chance. The right wing got off, and Connon squaring hard Flanaghan was left in possession, but harassed by a defender his shot went wide.
All the honours on the Aberdeen side went to the defence, and Anderson, Hutton, Forsyth, and W. R. Groserft in particular. Forward the best were Flanaghan, who made a creditable first appearance; Connon, and Middleton.
On the Hearts' side the outstanding players were Kane, Birrell, Preston, Wilson, and Smillie. Attendance, 15,000.

Source: Aberdeen Daily Journal 15th November 1920

Heart of Midlothian Teamsheet
Kane; Birrell, J. Wilson; Nellies, Preston, Porter; Sinclair, Murphy, Forbes, Smillie, W. Wilson
Attendance: 15,000
Venue: Tynecastle, Edinburgh
Referee: T. Dougray, Bellshill
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