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Aberdeen 1 - 0 Raith Rovers

Div 1 (Old)
Aberdeen scorers: Miller.

26/08/1922 | KO: 15:00


Raith Rovers' plucky defensive play at Pittodrie Park against Aberdeen saved them from greater defeat than by the only goal of the match, obtained by Miller, the centre forward, who came into prominence as a goal-getter last season. Not only Brown, as custodian, who did some wonderful feats of saving, but also the backs, Barton and Moyes, were stalwarts, against whom repeated hard shots by Smith, Miller, Rankine, and Thomson were delivered in vain, except on the solitary occasion when Miller's forceful drive gave Brown no chance of averting disaster. How the Raith Rovers' goal remained intact during the persistent bombardment in the latter stages of the match was the best evidence of the brilliant defence. While the Fifeshire forwards were never very prominent in attack, the Pittodrie front line were evidently out to show their paces. Smith, the left winger, with his smart runs and skilful centring, early attracted attention, and Middleton on the left wing was also a trier, though not placing the ball so well. Attendance, 16,000.

Source: The Scotsman, 28th August 1922


Although victory was by the narrow margin of the only goal, Aberdeen richly deserved their success over Raith Rovers at Pittodrie. This was the Aberdeen team's first home game in the Scottish League competition for the season, and the form shown will go a long way towards strengthening confidence in its ability to achieve further successes. There were 16.000 spectators, and these saw a game in which Aberdeen, who attacked for three-quarters of the time, generally held the upper hand. That the scoring was delayed until the game was one hour old was due not to lack of shooting by the Aberdeen forwards but rather to misdirected effort and inability at close quarters to apply that deft touch which makes all the difference between failure and success. The goal was the outcome of a clever move initiated and developed by Smith, the Aberdeen outside-left. He got the ball near midfield and carrying it well up the field, sent a long oblique ground pass behind the Rovers backs, and Miller, racing ahead, adroitly placed it out the reach of Brown, who had left his goal to intercept the forward. The ball had been netted in the first half by Miller, but the whistle had previously sounded for offside, and later Thomson headed past Brown, for the point to be disallowed for a similar reason.

Raith Rovers Outplayed.

While there had been periods in the first half when the teams were well matched. Aberdeen took the game in hand before the interval, and after resuming they never relaxed their grip. The narrowness of the victory far from reflected the superiority of the winners, who for sustained periods laid siege to the Rovers' goal without reply from the visitors' attack. Barton and Moyes defended stubbornly at back for the Rovers, but towards the finish both were in distress, and Brown, who played brilliantly in goal, was badly supported. His charge experienced many narrow escapes. On one occasion a shot from Rankine hit the upright, and near the finish the goalkeeper was fortunate to deflect a terrific drive from Miller against the crossbar, for Rankine to head over from the rebound.

Brilliance of Smith.

A feature of the second period was the effective play of the Aberdeen left wing. Smith, the ex-Rangers player, appeared to be able to do as he liked with the opposition and his great speed, fine ball control, and centring and shooting abilities aroused the admiration of the spectators. Miller gave a capital display of hard shooting at centre forward, and his goal was fitting reward for repeated effort. The other forwards on the home side played skilfully, but hesitancy to shoot and inability to get correct aim contributed largely to the narrowness of what should have been a much more decisive victory. Dr Milne was a great destructive power at centre-half, his mastery over the visitors' inside forwards being largely responsible for the small part taken in the game by the Kirkcaldy attack. MacLachlan was very judicious at left half, his constructive and forcing play contributing to the success of the home left, and A. B. Grosert showed much individual cleverness at right half. After the first half-hour Hutton and Forsyth had an easy time at back, and except for a brilliant full-length save from Jennings following a corner kick in the second half Blackwell was not seriously tested.

Weakness of Rovers.

Raith Rovers, who won the corresponding game last season, played disappointingly. Their forwards never really shook off the Aberdeen half-backs, and, unable keep the ball when they got it, threw too much work on their rear divisions, upon whom the strain of defence was plainly visible before the end. Brown repeatedly saved well, and kept down the scoring. Moyes was the better back, Barton being overwhelmed by the cleverness of Smith, but neither was accurate in his returns. Morris was best of a moderate half-back line that lacked constructive ability, Collier failing to touch the form which gained him international honours last season. The play of the forwards fell short of expectations, the tendency on the part of all five to over-indulgence in individual tactics proving disastrous against the tackling of the home half-backs. Miller occasionally was conspicuous, but Borland, outside left, who was badly supported, appeared the only one capable of making ground. Archibald, an ex-Aberdeen player, did not impress against his old clubmates.

Source: Aberdeen Daily Journal 28th August 1922

Raith Rovers Teamsheet
Brown; Barton, Moyes; Raeburn, Morris, Collier; Archibald, Miller, Jennings, Bauld, Borland
Attendance: 16,000
Venue: Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen
Referee: J. Bell, Dundee
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