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Morton 2 - 2 Aberdeen

HT Score: Morton 0 - 1 Aberdeen

Scottish Premier Reserve League
Morton scorers: Brophy 82, Lyon 92
Aberdeen scorers: Virtanen 45, Robertson 73.

23/04/2019 | KO: 14:00

The young Dons travelled to Greenock for the third time this season, this time to face Morton in their penultimate game of the Reserve League campaign.

They lined up with Archie Mair in goal behind a back four of Ryan Harrington, Lloyd Robertson, Sam Roscoe and skipper Jack MacKenzie. Miko Virtanen and Connor Barron anchored the midfield with Lewis Duncan and Ethan Ross in the wide berths while Seb Ross played just off striker Kieran Shanks.

Overhead conditions were good on a pleasant mild, spring afternoon as the teams took to the field, the Cappielow pitch just starting to show signs of a heavy season hosting Morton's first and second teams as well as Celtic's Reserve League side.

An early Duncan cross created danger in the Morton box, but Virtanen's cute back-heel couldn't pick out a team-mate. The home side forced a corner on 5 minutes, MacKenzie being in the right place to clear the danger.

Ethan Ross spurned a chance on 9 minutes after brother Seb had been bowled over by keeper Brendan Pearson just outside the area, his free-kick sailing over the bar. The Ton threatened when former Dons youth player Darren Hynes fired in a cross from the right, but Dykes couldn't quite get on to the end of it.

Hynes picked up a booking on 16 minutes after a poor challenge on Ethan Ross who was attracting some rough treatment from the home defenders.

McGrattan had a great chance for Morton on 22 minutes when he was picked out by a nice ball from Dykes, but his weak header was easy for Mair. Moments later Virtanen made a great run from midfield, his right-footed effort forcing a diving save from Pearson

Seb Ross tested the keeper after taking a fine Barron pass in his stride, Pearson's handling faultless as he dealt with the strike. Both sides were playing some tidy football and Roscoe did well to clear another Hynes cross from the right as the homesters tried to grab the opening goal.

A minute from the break Aberdeen took the lead.

Seb Ross made a good break down the left and his accurate cutback was knocked into the net by Virtanen who had made an excellent supporting run from midfield. The Finn is in a rich vein of goal-scoring form in recent weeks, the goal his fifth of the campaign.

In a first half of few clear chances, Pearson had been the busier of the two keepers and the Dons deserved their narrow interval advantage.

Half time - Morton Reserves 0 Aberdeen Reserves 1

Lyon replaced McKeown for Morton as the second half kicked off in bright sunshine. Mair was the first keeper to make a save after the break, holding Easdale's shot at the second attempt. The Dons goalie made an even better save on 53 minutes, knocking away a near post header. McGrattan then came close with a twenty-five yarder as the home side enjoyed their best spell in the match.

Aberdeen won a free-kick wide right and MacKenzie's flighted delivery just evaded Roscoe at the back post. The visitors made a triple change on 63 minutes, Conor Power, Luke Turner and Tyler Mykyta replacing Harrington, Roscoe and Duncan.

The Dons nearly made it two on 67, Mykyta and Seb Ross combining to create the opening for Ethan Ross, but Pearson produced a fantastic save to deny the Dons striker.
Morton made a second change on 70 minutes as Easdale was withdrawn, Purdue replacing him.

John Sutton's Morton side were having the better of the second half without seriously testing Mair but Paul Sheerin was asking for more from the Dons and they responded with a second goal on 73 minutes, Robertson perfectly positioned to knock the ball home after Ethan Ross' corner had been headed back into the middle of the six-yard box.

A big moment for young Lloyd as he netted his first Reserve League goal.

Max Barry replaced Seb Ross for the final 12 minutes of normal time as the Dons looked to put the game to bed, but it was Morton who grabbed the goal on 82 minutes through Brophy which rekindled their efforts to get something to show for their efforts, the striker nicking the ball past Mair from close range.

A couple of dangerous balls flashed across the face of the Aberdeen goal as Morton pressed and the home side showed the value of battling right to the end as they grabbed an equaliser two minutes into stoppage time, sub Lyon curling a fine shot past Mair into the top corner.

Over the piece, a draw just about the right result, Morton dominating the second half and showing great spirit to come back from two down.

Morton Teamsheet
Pearson, Hynes (C), Strapp, McKeown (Lyon 45), Watt, McGrattan, Eardley, Dykes, Brophy, Easdale (Purdue 70), O'Connell (Rodgers 74)

Unused substitutes: Docherty, Garrity

Bookings:  Hynes 16
Aberdeen Teamsheet
Mair, Harrington (Power 63), MacKenzie, Virtanen, Robertson, Roscoe (Turner 63), Duncan (Mykyta 63), Ross (Barry 78), Shanks, Ross, Barron.

Unused Subs: Craddock.
Venue: Cappielow Park, Greenock
Referee: Andy Taylor