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Livingston 0 - 0 Aberdeen

HT Score: Livingston 0 - 0 Aberdeen

Scottish Premiership
Rearranged from 13th January

30/01/2021 | KO: 15:00

Stalemate in the Macaroni

A game that was very much a carbon copy of the stalemate in Perth on Wednesday, Aberdeen carved out the afternoon's best chances but couldn't make them count as the 90 minutes ended in frustration against the division's form team.

As the game at Livi finally got underway at the third time of asking, Derek McInnes made two changes to the Aberdeen side that drew 0-0 at St Johnstone in midweek. In came Connor McLennan, off the back of signing a new two year contract with the club and Greg Leigh, replacing Scott Wright, who started from the bench, and Sam Cosgrove. Dylan McGeouch returned to the subs' bench after injury.

There were four changes for Livingston, unbeaten in 12, after their Wednesday win over Kilmarnock. In came Efe Ambrose, Julien Serrano, Craig Sibbald and Scott Robinson. Josh Mullin, Alan Forrest and Gavin Reilly all dropped to the bench, Jack Fitzwater missing out completely.

Ambrose gave the game. An acrobatic start, an overhead kick from 25 yards that flew well wide in the second minute the first bit of action as Aberdeen settled into a back four, Tommie Hoban, looking like Rambo with a protective headband over his cut forehead, and Leigh at full-back.

The Dons were sharply off on the counter-attack four minutes later, Ryan Hedges on the run. Perhaps he picked the wrong ball, feeding McLennan on the right when there were more central options. His early ball in found Kennedy but the referee gave a free-kick against him as he challenged. Aberdeen were looking bright, having the lion's share of the attacking play in the first ten minutes before the game settled into a scrappy period on a very awkward looking surface.

The Dons were inches away from the lead in the 18th minute, a good move down the right ending with Ross McCrorie finding Jonny Hayes, whose cross picked out McLennan around the penalty spot. His glancing header flashed past the goalkeeper but struck the underside of the bar and bounced away to safety.

Hayes had a great chance to put his team in front three minutes later, McLennan feeding Kennedy down the left. He crossed low for Hayes, in space a dozen yards out, but he fell away from his shot and ballooned it over the bar.

More pressure from Aberdeen in the 23rd minute, Lewis Ferguson sending Hayes away down the right but his dangerous cross through the box just eluded McLennan.

Livi were on the break from there, Serrano bursting down their left, bobbling a cross through the six yard area. Robinson missed it but Pittman was onto it at the back post, Joe Lewis hurling himself across goal to somehow scoop the ball to safety, off the line at the foot of the post.

A real scramble followed a Hedges corner in the 28th minute, Stryjek flapping at his clearance and the ball dropping for Hoban, but there were too many yellow shirted bodies around the ball for him to be able to force the ball in.

The game became a bit more cagey thereafter but even so, the Dons were very much the better team as we edged towards the break and parity as the teams went back into the dressing rooms.


No changes from either side at the break, and it was Livi who opened best, a 48th minute corner causing chaos in the Aberdeen box, Bartley steering a header back across goal to Robinson who nodded over the bar. Livi got in behind after 54 minutes after what looked like a foul on Hedges on halfway, Devlin hammering a cross through the six-yard, nobody able to get a touch on it. Hedges required treatment before carrying on.

Aberdeen took a while to get going after the interval, but they had another sight of the home goal on the hour, Hedges breaking forward before feeding a pass into McCrorie inside the box. Ambrose was favourite to win the ball but McCrorie took it off his toe and drilled in a low shot, Stryjek saving with his legs, McCrorie clearly frustrated that he hadn't deposited the ball in the net. There were claims for a penalty six minutes later, Ferguson's miskick bouncing up and striking Holt on the hand, but it would have been harsh on the hosts.

The hosts made the game's first substitution after 67 minutes, the giant frame of Emmanuel-Thomas on for Sibbald. Two minutes later, Devlin threw himself into a challenge on Kennedy as Aberdeen tried to break. He got the ball and then followed through on Kennedy who needed liberal use of the magic sponge before he carried on.

Livingston won a free-kick on the right edge of the box in the 74th minute, Emmanuel-Thomas planting his shot into the wall, the Dons clearing their lines thereafter. Wright became Aberdeen's first change in the 79th minute, replacing McLennan. Wright and Hedges combined beautifully in the 82nd minute, getting the ball to Kennedy with a clean sight at goal from the edge of the box, but he lifted the ball over the bar, another good chance gone begging for the visiting team.

With six minutes on the clock, Bruce Anderson came on for the Dons instead of Kennedy, Longridge replacing Serrano at the same time. Holt went into the book a minute later, chopping down McCrorie, before Robinson then made way for Lawson in Livi's last change.

Ash Taylor came close with two minutes left, coming in at the back post to meet a long free-kick into the box from Hayes, Taylor clipping it at the back post on the half volley but it was a comfortable save. Lewis had to work a bit harder at the other end a moment later, quickly off his line to close down and block Lawson who was on the run into the area.

Anderson had a great change to win it in the first minute of added time, Hoban wriggling his way to the byline, standing up a cross to Anderson around the penalty spot. Going back across goal, his header drifted wide of goal, another golden opportunity for the Dons.

Play quickly swung to the other end, Pittman driving in a shot at goal from 20 yards, Lewis pushing it behind at the near post, the last meaningful action in the Dons' second stalemate of the week.

This match was originally scheduled to be played on 30th December 2020 but was postponed due to a frozen pitch. It was rearranged to the 13th January 2021 but was again postponed because of very heavy rain.
Livingston Teamsheet
Stryjek, Ambrose, Guthrie, Brown, Devlin, Bartley, Holt, Serrano, Sibbald (Emmanuel-Thomson 67), Pittman, Robinson (Lawson 87)

Unused Substitutes: McCrorie, McMillan, Longridge, , Mulin, Forrest, Kabia, Reilly

Bookings:  Holt 85
Venue: Almondvale, Livingston
Referee: Steven McLean
Next Match
East Kilbride
20 Jul 2024 / 15:00 / K-Park Training Academy, East Kilbride