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Airdrie 2 - 1 Aberdeen

HT Score: Airdrie 1 - 1 Aberdeen

Div 1 (Old)
Airdrie scorers: Russell, McQueen (pen)
Aberdeen scorers: Miller.

22/12/1923 | KO:


Though there was only a goal difference at the finish of the game between the Airdrieonians and Aberdeen at Airdrie, the local team won well - far more easily than the result would seem to suggest. Thrice in the first fifteen minutes the Aberdeen goal had remarkably narrow escapes, and then at their first and only call on Dempster in the first half Miller scored as the result of a misunderstanding between McQueen and Dempster. Russell equalised, and Blackwell continued to be the outstanding man for Aberdeen. Ten minutes of the second half had gone when Rankine gave away a "penalty" and McQueen scored. Near the end Aberdeen played together effectively for the first time, and the Airdrieonian backs had enough to do to keep them out. The game was a hard one from start to finish, and was largely a contest between the home forwards and the stone-wall defence of the visitors. Blackwell was a great goalkeeper, and it was due chiefly to his efforts that Aberdeen were not beaten by several goals. The attendance would be about 6000.

Source: The Scotsman, 24th December 1923

A penalty goal proved the undoing of Aberdeen at Broomfield Park, where Airdrieonians gained a 2-1 victory. In a mild afternoon, the pitch was soft after rain, and in the deep going and with the heavy and greasy ball accurate movement was difficult. It was always a dour, ding-dong struggle, with both teams showing a tendency resort to over-vigorous tactics. Frequently the referee had to caution players, and more than once he had to act as arbiter between pugilistically inclined parties. The better team won on the day's play, but the victory was indecisive the margin indicates, and, from the Aberdeen point of view, it was unsatisfactory that a penalty goal should have meant the difference between victory and defeat. Blackwell in the Aberdeen goal gave a brilliant display, and but for his keeping Airdrieonians must have won by a more comfortable margin. Hutton and Forsyth, too, offered a stubborn resistance, and the rear trio were the Aberdeen players who look most credit from the game. Airdrieonians were by far the stronger in attack. Frequently their clever forwards, ably supported by the half-backs, threatened to over-run the Aberdeen defence, and had they encountered less resolute resistance they must have won much more easily. At the same time Aberdeen came very near saving a point, and the penalty award which decided the issue in favour of the winners was a decision about the justification for which there could be considerable doubt.


After Forsyth had repelled a raid by the Airdrie right, Grant got away to test Dempster with a lobbed centre. Reid again put the home side attacking, and off his cross Gallacher just failed to reach the ball. It, however, went to Somerville, who shot from close range, and Hutton brought off a spectacular clearance. Aberdeen were kept on the defensive, and after Gallacher had shot inches wide, Blackwell had twice to clear from Howieson. A run by the Aberdeen left resulted in Miller shooting into the net, but the goal was disallowed for offside. Blackwell was again called into action, shooting hard from a few yards out. The home forwards moved with wonderful precision, and Hutton saved what must have been a certain goal by Somerville. After twenty minutes' play, and following a virtual bombardment of their goal, Aberdeen actually took the lead. Paton led Smith away on a long run, and the winger beat two opponents to cross almost on the goal line. McQueen evidently thought the ball would go behind, and failed to observe Miller, who had followed up and neatly got his foot round the back to turn the ball into the net. For a brief period after this the Aberdeen attack showed up well, Miller, Rankin, and Smith having the home defence in difficulties on several occasions, without Dempster, however, being seriously tested. After this the Airdrie attack again got going, and there were several exciting scrimmages in front of Blackwell. At the end of half-an-hour Airdrie got level. Gallacher dashed through the centre to be dispossessed by Hutton. The ball, however, went to Russell, who had been following up, and shot on the run, to give Blackwell no chance. Following this success the home attack was rampant, but when Gallacher was injured and had to retire for a few minutes, some relief was afforded the hardworked Aberdeen defence. Blackwell, at full length, stopped a terrific shot by Somerville, and Jackson completed the clearance. Close on the interval a terrific free kick by Miller was saved by Dempster at the expense of a fruitless corner. On the whole Aberdeen had credit in being level at the interval.


On resuming, Blackwell was early called upon to clear from Howieson, and Miller brought relief with a dash down the centre. He slipped the ball out to Smith, who returned it, and Dempster fisted away. Miller fastened on, but his terrific shot struck the goalkeeper on the arm and rebounded into play. Airdrie were quickly back on the attack, and Blackwell brought off another full length save from Howieson. Aberdeen again made headway, and after McQueen had missed. Miller got past the backs to deliver a tremendous shot, the ball striking Dempster. Another spell of Airdrie pressure followed, and Russell shot against the upright. A free kick taken by McDougall nearly led to the downfall of the Aberdeen goal. Blackwell fell on the ball, and surrounded by players there were tense moments until he emerged successfully with the ball in his hands. Blackwell at this stage was kept busy and did well to clear shots by Gallagher and Sommerville. He had a wonderful one-handed save off the home left winger's head. After eighteen minutes' play. Airdrie obtained the winning goal from penalty. A handle by Rankin, who had fallen back to defend, was held intentional by the referee and although Blackwell got the tips of his fingers on McQueen's spot kick, he was unable stay the ball's progress. For five minutes after this the Airdrie forwards ran riot, but the defence gave nothing more away.


Then came an Aberdeen revival, in which they were unfortunate not to draw level. Miller let Smith away, and the latter centred into Dempster's hands. Later the left winger had a lightning shot, and it seemed the ball would find the net until it was accidentally deflected against the upright by a defender's foot. The Aberdeen improvement was maintained, and Miller had another fine shot which did not appear to be more than an inch wide of Dempster's charge. To the end, Aberdeen pressed, and just failed to draw Level, but on the run of the game in the earlier stages they would have been fortunate have done so.

Source: Press & Journal, 24th December 1923

Airdrie Teamsheet
Dempster; Dick, McQueen; Preston, McDougal, Bennie; Reid, Russell, Gallacher, Howieson, Somerville
Attendance: 5,000
Venue: Broomfield Park, Airdrie
Referee: J. McMahon, Motherwell
Next Match
27 Jul 2024 / 15:00 / Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen