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Aberdeen 1 - 0 St. Johnstone

HT Score: Aberdeen 0 - 0 St. Johnstone

Scottish Cup Third Round Second Replay
Aberdeen scorers: Bruce 78.

01/03/1926 | KO: 15:15

Aberdeen's Third Cup-Tie Victory. St Johnstone beaten at last.

It was only after a very hardly-contested match that, at the third time of asking, Aberdeen yesterday, at Pittodrie Park, succeeded in defeating St Johnstone by the only goal scored. While Aberdeen did the bulk of the pressing in the first half, there were times when St Johnstone were extremely dangerous, and anything might have happened. As it was, Aberdeen were lucky to get their goal some ten minutes before the finish through R. Bruce accepting a pass from his partner Jackson and sending in a swift shot from close quarters. The Perth defence, as in previous encounters, proved magnificent, the play of Page being especially outstanding. He received excellent support from both Penman and Jamieson at back, and A. Kirkwood showed up well among the halves. Hart and Toner in the front line were unremitting in their efforts to force play in Perth's favour. Aberdeen, from start to finish, never allowed the pace to slacken, though they did not always make the most of their chances. The attendance was officially stated to be 13,750, exclusive of season ticket-holders. The divisible gate money amounted to £670 13s 1d.

Source: The Scotsman, 2nd March 1926

Five hours' battling in the third round of the Scottish Cup competition terminated at Pittodrie Park yesterday afternoon, when in the third meeting between the teams Aberdeen knocked out St Johnstone by the only goal. There could be no denying Aberdeen's superiority, and yet victory was far from being easily attained. For a long time it looked as if Aberdeen's attacking efforts would be defied by a resolute defence, in which Page, the Perth team's giant goalkeeper, once again excelled, and it was fitting that the all-important goal which enabled Aberdeen to go forward and meet Third Lanark in the fourth round on Saturday should have come from the most skilfully-executed movement in the game. It came 12 minutes form the close. Hutton had cleared to Pirie, and the latter slipped the ball along the ground to Jackson, who had gone to inside right, vice R. Bruce, after the interval. Jackson cleverly rounded Black, and running on with the ball at his foot, stalled off a challenge by Kirkwood, and when he might have risked a shot from just beyond the penalty area on the right, he slipped the ball accurately past two defenders to R. Bruce, who was about 12 yards out, and in front of, and slightly to the left of St Johnston's goal. Bruce steadied the ball, and taking deliberate aim, sent it along the ground just out of the reach of Page, who went to full length and made a desperate but futile effort to save. From the start of the movement the ball was never off the ground until it was picked out of the net.

Game of Many Thrills

In the game there were many thrills and many finely conceived movements, but nothing was so perfectly executed as this, and it roused the spectators to a high pitch of enthusiasm. Owing to players suffering from injuries both clubs were in a quandary as to the composition of their teams, and the men on duty were only decided upon at practically the last moment. As it was, there men on both sides wo were 'patched up, ' and not as fit as could have been wished for such a strenuous encounter. Hutton, McDermid, Reid, Pirie, and MacLachlan on the Aberdeen side all played under handicap, and on the St Johnstone side, Jamieson, Swallow, and Munro were suffering effects of mishaps. The game says much for the loyalty of the players that they overcame their handicaps.
The attendance provided striking testimony to the popularity of the game and to the interest the tie had aroused. On an afternoon that for business reasons was not favourable, 13,750 persons paid for admission, and the receipts which the clubs shared equally amounted to £670 13s 1d.

Victory for Better Team

By general consent the better team won but they took a long time to do it, and so quick-changing were the phases of the game, that the issue was in doubt up to the very last kick. On the run of the play in the first period, Aberdeen might have been several goals ahead, yet in the period St Johnstone might easily have 'stolen' the advantage. Page, the St Johnstone goalkeeper, was, as in the previous encounters, a great factor in his team's defence. There was no high ball that could break down his guard, and the game suited him in respect that practically all the balls that came his way provided him with opportunity to demonstrate his fisting abilities. In the period practically all the Aberdeen forwards shot at the Perth goalkeeper, and there were many efforts that were either charged down, blocked or deflected. The frequency in which Page was in action would have justified Aberdeen in being well ahead at the interval, but while the goalkeeper and his colleagues were grand defenders, it should not be overlooked that many of the attempts made did not rebound to the credit of the Aberdeen attackers, who were brilliant in their outfield and wing play, but often weak in finishing.
St Johnstone, on the other hand attacked much less frequently, but were dangerous almost every time they made ground. This was accounted for by the fact that Aberdeen, concentrating on attack, were often called upon to meet a sudden reversal of the situation. The nearest St Johnstone came to scoring, was when the referee having failed to notice when Toner had run the ball over the goal line before he centred, Munro shot in with great force and D. Bruce blocked the shot. The ball rebounded to Hart, who sent in a fierce drive and Blackwell was lucky to be in line to stop it. Black and Hart had other good efforts which passed behind, dangerously close to the Aberdeen goal.

Thill Upon Thrill

The pace in the second half, when Jackson and Bruce changed places in the Aberdeen forward line, was as hot as that of the earlier period, In it both teams redoubled their efforts to snatch the lead. If anything, St Johnstone showed up better than earlier in the game, but the balance was always with Aberdeen. R. Bruce, Reid, McDermid, and Smith all had shots that either just missed or were brilliantly countered by Page and his colleagues. On the other hand, St Johnstone came as near to scoring, and it would have been the limit of irony if D. Bruce, the Aberdeen left back, had spoilt a good afternoon's work by sending through his own goal. As it was his impetuosity in intervening when Blackwell was waiting to receive a bouncing ball, provided one of the sensations of the game. Off Bruce's miskick, the ball missed the Aberdeen goal by only about a yard. It was to his credit that the mistake did not affect his subsequent play. Thrills were more numerous at the other end, however. After R. Bruce had obtained the all-important goal, Aberdeen looked like going further ahead, and several times came within an ace of doing so. On one occasion Page, at full length, pushed away a ground pass by Smith, and while lying on the ground, shot up his hand to deflect over the bar a ball sent in by R. Bruce from about three yards' range. In the last two minutes of the game St Johnstone nearly pulled the brand from the burning. A rebound off a defender's clearance landed at Toner's feet, and the Pert left-winger, when favourably placed for scoring, swept the ball inches high of Blackwell's crossbar. Thus was interest in the game maintained right up to the finish.

Source: Press & Journal, 2nd March 1926

St. Johnstone Teamsheet
Page; Penman, Jamieson; White, Swallow, Kirkwood (A); Dick, Hart, Munro, Black, Toner
Attendance: 13,750
Venue: Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen
Referee: C. Bilney, Glasgow
Next Match
10 Jul 2024 / 19:00 / Balmoor Stadium, Peterhead