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Falkirk 1 - 1 Aberdeen

HT Score: Falkirk 1 - 0 Aberdeen

Div 1 (Old)
Falkirk scorers: Bruce (o.g.) 6
Aberdeen scorers: Smith 65.

11/09/1926 | KO:


The game at Brockville Park, Falkirk, was strenuously contested, and Aberdeen were just a shade lucky to take away one of the points. Keenness was a feature of the play, and not scientific football. The services of the trainers on both sides were far too frequently in demand, and the referee on more than one occasion found it necessary to caution players. Falkirk made a promising start, and the visitors were kept in their own territory for fully ten minutes. The opening goal came after six minutes, John Hunter driving in a ball that cannoned off Bruce's foot into the net. Aberdeen were weak in attack, the forwards, with the exception of Reid, finding it a difficult matter to get beyond the home half-backs, who were first rate spoilers, but not so prominent in constructive work. Towards the interval, Aberdeen put in a spell of pressure, Reid repeatedly making openings which were not taken advantage of by his colleagues. In the second half, however, Falkirk were seen almost wholly on the offensive, but the defensive barrier put up by Hutton and his colleagues was more than the home forwards could cope with. It came as a surprise when Smith broke away on the left and, outpacing all opposition, scored the equalising goal very cleverly. The play thereafter was not pretty to watch, stoppages for free kicks, and injuries to players, marring what would otherwise have been quite a good game. All Falkirk's efforts to regain their lost lead proved unavailing. The estimated attendance was 8000.

Source: The Scotsman, 13th September 1926

Aberdeen effected a highly creditable performance by dividing two goals and sharing the points with Falkirk at Brockville. The result was all the more meritorious when it is considered that previous to the interval they lost R, Bruce through injury, and although he resumed at outside right in the second half, his crippled condition handicapped his team, while Smith and McDermid also played at a disadvantage as the result of minor hurts. A draw was a fair result, for while Falkirk attacked most in the first half, Aberdeen were often dangerous, and in the second half there was really nothing between the teams, so well matched were they. Blackwell kept goal in brilliant fashion for Aberdeen, and brought off many excellent saves, while Hutton and D. Bruce were resolute and sure kicking backs. MacLachlan was the pick of the half-back line that did not altogether distinguish itself, and forward the honours went to Reid and McDermid. Smith was often dangerous, and his equalising goal was brilliantly taken. Falkirk were a well-balanced side. In defence they were splendidly served by Ferguson, Scott, and McIlwane, and in Hunter they had the best forward on the field. Martin and Cox also did well in this division. Seven thousand spectators enjoyed a rousing tussle, in which excitement ran high, and often the exchanges were too robust to be healthy.


Captain Alan Graham, the Unionist candidate for Stirling Burghs, kicked off, and a great pace was set from the start. Falkirk were quick to settle down, and first Spencer and then MacLachlan conceded corners when hard pressed. The Aberdeen defence had to battle desperately to keep out the fast home forwards, who swung the ball from side to side of the field, and it was no surprise when Falkirk took the lead after six minutes play. Hunter sent in shot, and it struck D. Bruce and was deflected wide of Blackwell, who, however, would probably not have avoided a score in any case. Smith gave Aberdeen relief after this, and forced a corner, following which Spencer centred and McDermid just missed the goal with a headed effort. At Blackwell's end Mason sent narrowly past, and Hunter repeated the performance. Although kept largely on the defensive, Aberdeen made sharp raids, and Miller and R. Bruce in quick succession were baulked in the act of shooting. Following this, Blackwell had to save in quick succession from Martin and from a free kick by Gowdy. At the other end Ferguson just managed to save from R. Bruce by deflecting the ball round the post. For a time Aberdeen kept up the offensive, and Reid twice got over dangerous centres that might been improved upon. From one of these Miller turned the ball against the goalkeeper, and it rebounded to Smith, whose pass to Miller was again intercepted by Ferguson. The game took another turn in favour of Falkirk, and from a breakaway by Paterson Blackwell threw himself on the top of a great shot by the homo left-winger. For a time raid was countered by raid. Reid on the Aberdeen right was particularly lively, and twice sent over tempting centres that eluded his colleagues. In another attack by the Falkirk forwards Hunter crashed the ball against the Aberdeen crossbar. Later the Aberdeen goalkeeper fisted clear from Paterson and Gowdy interrupted R. Bruce as the latter was about to shoot. In another Aberdeen raid R. Bruce, in attempting to locate the side net, sent the ball wide. Ferguson stopped a free kick by Edwards, and following this McIlwane blocked a fierce drive by Miller, and the Aberdeen inside forwards were again found wanting when Reid switched over two accurate centres. Near the interval Aberdeen lost R. Bruce, who injured a knee and had to be assisted off. At half-time Falkirk led by a goal to nil.


Resuming without R. Bruce, Aberdeen were forced to defend, and twice in quick succession Blackwell's goal had narrow escapes from shots by Cox. After five minutes Bruce again took the field, but was crippled, and went to outside right. Reid and Smith did their best to rally the Aberdeen attack, but Falkirk were soon again hammering at the Pittodrie defence. Cox and Hunter swept the ball over Blackwell's goal when they might have done better, and the Aberdeen custodian did well to deflect a fine shot by Martin. At this stage the Aberdeen defence were experiencing a gruelling time, but they never faltered. Blackwell stopped a terrific shot by Cox, but gradually the Pittodrie attack again came into view. Ferguson had to save from R. Bruce and Reid, and a free kick by Hutton was blocked by a row of defenders. At the other end Paterson shot against the outside of the net. Subsequently Aberdeen forced a corner, and Ferguson saved from Spencer. For a time the Aberdeen rally was maintained, and they were rewarded after twenty minutes' play when, following clever individual play by Reid, and an accurate pass by Miller, Smith rushed ahead, and although harassed by Scott finished by crashing the ball into the roof of the net. Subsequently McDermid, Reid, and Smith all sustained minor injuries, but they were able to continue. The closing stages were fiercely contested, and excitement among the players led to numerous petty infringements, none of them, however, of a serious nature. Each goal was visited in turn. On one occasion Reid was brought down on the fringe of the penalty area, but Hutton's pass to MacLachlan went astray. A surprise back-heel effort by Ritchie was splendidly saved by Blackwell. The game had a rousing flnish, and in the last minute Falkirk made an unsuccessful appeal for penalty for "hands" against a defender.

Source: Press & Journal, 13th September 1926

Falkirk Teamsheet
Ferguson; Scott, Gowdy: Kennedy, McIlwane, Ritchie; Martin, Mason, Cox, Hunter, Paterson
Attendance: 8,000
Venue: Brockville Park, Falkirk
Referee: T. Small, Dundee
Next Match
10 Jul 2024 / 19:00 / Balmoor Stadium, Peterhead