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Third Lanark 1 - 1 Aberdeen

Scottish Cup Quarter Final
Third Lanark scorers: McWaters 84
Aberdeen scorers: Smith 87.

06/03/1926 | KO:


It was a very fast and exciting tussle between Third Lanark and Aberdeen at Cathkin Park. On the whole a draw was a fair result, although Third Lanark held an advantage on play, but the Aberdeen defence was very good and the Cathkin forwards could find few opportunities for shooting. Aberdeen were more methodical in attack, but they too were up against a strong defence. In the first half Third Lanark were playing against a stiff breeze, but for a long time they had the better of the exchanges, and several times came very near to opening the score, but Blackwell was well covered up, and he had surprisingly few shots to save considering the pressure, although on one occasion he appeared to be beaten by a shot from Williamson, which struck the post. Aberdeen improved as the game went on, and the play continued to be fought out at a fast pace with a goal always possible at either end, but the defences held the upper hand. Four minutes from the end, however, the Third Lanark forwards came away strongly, and McWaters scored. Third Lanark seemed certain for the semi-final, but a slip by their defence let Smith through to equalise two minutes later. The attendance was 17,000, and the drawing £600 (exclusive of stand tax.) The replay will take place at Pittodrie Park on Wednesday.

Source: The Scotsman, 8th March 1926

Aberdeen had a desperate struggle to survive their visit to Third Lanark at Cathkin, where each team scored once in the closing minutes of a thrilling game. It was a fierce struggle throughout, with the Aberdeen defence often in desperate straits to stave off disaster. Generally Third Lanark were the aggressors, and were the more cohesive force, particularly in attack, their fast-moving forwards often dominating the situation, and repeatedly the Aberdeen forwards had to go to the assistance of an overworked set of defenders. On the run of the game, and although both goals had narrow escapes, Aberdeen are fortunate to still be in the competition, but it is to their credit that after losing a goal at such a critical stage as six minutes from the end, they succeeded in pulling the game out the fire. In the first half Aberdeen had the assistance of a strong wind, and Third Lanark were at the additional disadvantage of having to face a glaring sun. So well did Third Lanark defend, and so persistent were their attackers, that they came as near to scoring as Aberdeen, and thoroughly deserved to be level at the interval. In the second half there were prolonged bombardments o fthe Aberdeen defence, but while Blackwell's goal had numerous narrow escapes, the Third Lanark goal was often endangered, and their goalkeeper also experienced his share of good fortune. Sixteen thousand four hundred persons paid for admission, and the divisible gate amounted to £602.


Against the wind, Third Lanark attacked in the right, and from McWaters' centre Hilley shot over. Another raid followed by the Cathkin forwards, and Blair burst through to shoot over while on the run. Aberdeen found it difficult to gauge the wind, and returns by defenders repeatedly carried beyond the reach of the forwards, in fact several balls that were meant for forward passes actually went for byes. J. Brown had to field a long return by D. Bruce, and from near midfield Pirie shot over the home goal. Callighan set Third Lanark on attack, Hutton clearing, and MacLachlan blocked a hard drive by Hilley. A shot by Jackson at the other end was saved by J. Brown. Following this, McWaters broke away, and Blackwell had to fist away from his cross. For a time after this Aberdeen pressed, but the strong wind played havoc with their passing, the result being that many times the ball rolled harmlessly over the line for bye kicks. Blair was an alert leader for Third Lanark, and after the centre forward had burst through, Edward effected a fine recovery by scraping the ball away as Blair was about to shoot, Blackwell running out and completing the clearance. The Aberdeen goal had another narrow escape shortly afterwards, when Williamson worked ahead to let go a terrific shot from fully thirty yards' range. The ball swerved as it neared goal, but with Blackwell powerless to save, it hit his right-hand post and rebounded out of play. This escape stirred Aberdeen to the danger of defeat, and Reid got away only to flash the ball across Brown's charge, and it swerved behind. Following this Aberdeen maintained a period of stiff pressure. J. Brown fisted away from a free kick by MacLachlan. Then he fisted away from Pirie, and with the goalkeeper out of his charge, Aimer, almost below the bar, headed clear from R. Bruce. Aberdeen continued to apply relentless pressure. J. Brown in his knees saved a terrific low shot from Smith, and shortly afterwards effected a grand clearance from a splendid try by R. Bruce. While Aberdeen were concentrating on attack, McWaters broke away and centred, and Stevenson's first-time shot flashed only inches over Blackwell's goal. Following this Smith put Aberdeen on attack, and from his cross there was a series of exciting scrimmages until the ball was cleared. Aberdeen again attacked on the right, and Brown at the foot of the post saved from Reid. Following this, Smith, when close in, had a chance to shoot, but hesitated and S. Brown shouldered him over the goal line. Towards the interval play was confined to midfield, but at half-time neither had scored.


Aberdeen almost took the lead at the start of the second half. A slip by S. Brown let Smith past, and the winger lobbed the ball across the goal for Jackson to head it against the crossbar with. J. Brown in a hopeless position for saving. In the subsequent scrimmage Aberdeen forced a corner, and the Cathkin goalkeeper did well to clear. At the other end Blackwell saved at close range from Stevenson, after Callaghan had centred. Following this the Aberdeen defence was subjected to a tremendous gruelling. The Third Lanark forwards and half-backs threw all their energies into attack, and there was a series of desperate scrimmages in front of the Aberdeen goal. Several shots were blocked or charged down, and Low just missed with a terrific drive. Blackwell with difficulty got rid of a header from Blair, and Hilley was only inches wide with another drive. This fierce duel between the Aberdeen defence and the Cathkin attack continued for nearly fifteen minutes, and neither side could claim advantage. During a lull in the storm R. Bruce broke away and gave Reid a chance for Aberdeen but the home goalkeeper ran out and forestalled him. Following a kick for a foul on Reid, the home goal was in danger, but Aimer relieved, and at the other end the free kick taken just outside the Aberdeen penalty area was blocked by a defensive wall. Reid gave Aberdeen relief with a clever run, and Jackson slipped the ball along In front of the home goal, but R. Brace just failed to reach it when a touch would have meant a goal. For a time the Aberdeen attack filled the eye, but they were seldom allowed to develop danger. McWaters gave Third Lanark relief, and off his centre Callaghan headed just wide of the Aberdeen goal.


Reid followed with a great effort to win the game for Aberdeen. In the centre of the field he beat two opponents and was in the act of shooting when R. Bruce nipped in and shot just wide of Brown's goal. This did not matter, however, as the referee penalised Bruce for being offside. A high centre by Smith was cleverly fielded by the Cathkin goalkeeper, and following this, the custodian effected a wonderful left-handed save off a hard shot by R. Bruce. At the other end Stevenson just missed from a difficult angle.
It was following this that the sensations of the game occurred. The Third Lanark left broke away, and D. Bruce almost on his knees headed out a cross shot by Stevenson. The ball went to McWaters, and although he did not gather it right first time, he got a second chance and lobbed it into the net out of Blackwell's reach. With less than six minutes left for play the tie looked to be won and lost, but another sensation followed. Aberdeen, temporarily shaken, repelled another raid by the Cathkin right wing, and MacLachlan let Smith away. The Aberdeen left winger carried on for some distance, and then lobbed a high ball into the Cathkin goal right under the bar. Brown in a desperate attempt to save just managed to touch the ball, but could only deflect it into the side net, and Aberdeen were on level terms. This happened three minutes from the close. Both teams wound up in lively style, but defence prevailed. In the last minute McDermid was stunned and had to be assisted to the pavilion, Aberdeen finishing with ten men.

Source: Press & Journal, 8th March 1926

Third Lanark Teamsheet
Brown (J.); Brown (S.), Aimer; Low, Williamson, Hilley; McWaters, Reid, Blair, Stevenson, Callaghan
Attendance: 16,400
Venue: Cathkin Park, Glasgow
Referee: W. Bell, Motherwell
Next Match
10 Jul 2024 / 19:00 / Balmoor Stadium, Peterhead