Issue Decided Seven Minutes from End
ARMSTRONG GETS HAT-TRICKAberdeen had to fight hard for the points against Dunfermline at Pittodrie. Although they held the lead from the sixteenth minute, the issue was in doubt until Armstrong netted the third goal seven minutes from the end. An injury to Donald necessitated a reorganisation of the Dunfermline left flank in the second period, when Syme went to left back, Donald to outside left, Reid to left half, and Gourlay to inside left. These changes did not appear to upset the visitors, and with thirteen minutes gone they reduced the leeway to one goal. Aberdeen seemed to think they could win as they liked until they lost this goal. Then they found that goal-scoring was no easy matter against a Dunfermline team which was determined to make a bold bid to save a point. There was always the danger that the visitors would snatch the equalising goal, and it was only when Aberdeen notched their third counter that the points were safe.
Unimpressive FinishingThe Dunfermline goal was fortunate to fall only twice during the first half, but at the same time the finishing of the Aberdeen forwards was not particularly impressive. Armstrong was the homesters' match-winner. He gave a clever display, and scored all three goals. He was seen at his best in the first half, and his clever ball-control and neat passes made him one the outstanding players afield. If he reproduces the same form against Germany at Ibrox or, Wednesday he should prove one of Scotland's big successes. Dunfermline started off with great dash and enthusiasm. Aberdeen took some time to settle down, and sixteen minutes had gone before they took the lead. An exciting race between Beynon and Farquharson for a McKenzie pass ended in the ball bouncing off the 'keeper into the air, and Armstrong headed into an empty goal. The Aberdeen goal was only once in any real danger during this half, and that was when a Reid header struck the upright. On the other hand, the Dunfermline goal had two remarkable escapes. Strauss got clean through on one occasion to smash the ball against the crossbar, and later a sure counter struck Donald on the legs as he was standing on the goal-line. The Dons' second goal came three minutes from the interval. When Armstrong broke through to shoot, Farquharson could only push out the ball to Beynon who crossed for Armstrong to head into the net. Thirteen minutes after the start of the second half Dunfermline reduced the leeway. McGrogan and Chalmers broke through on the right, and the ball went across to Donald, who was lying unmarked. He crossed nicely and McGowan headed into the net. Aberdeen's third goal was the best of the match. Armstrong and Strauss switched places, and the South African made ground before parting for Armstrong to beat Farquharson with a fast drive.
Sound DefenceThe Aberdeen defence was caught napping when Dunfermline scored, but was generally fairly sound. Smith in goal was not over-worked, and Cooper and McGill were a hard-kicking pair of backs. McGill and Thomson, however, never succeeded in subduing the McGrogan-Chalmers combine. Thomson is not playing to his best form. Dunlop worked hard in defence, and Falloon, in his usual role of third back, was a strong defender. Armstrong was, of course, the outstanding forward, but McKenzie, too, was in sprightly mood. He was clever on the ball, and his shooting was not attended the best of luck. Mills was disappointing and did little of note. Although not so prominent as at Celtic Park the previous week, Beynon on the right was always a source of danger, and played a prominent part in two of the goals. Strauss, on the other wing, had a quiet afternoon, but was opposed to a good back in Warden.
Plucky DunfermlineDunfermline are due credit for a plucky display. Farquharson in goal, had one or two good saves, while Warden was outstanding in defence. Until was injured Donald played a serviceable game, and both at left half and left back Syme did much valuable work. Bolt was a useful right-half. In a whole-hearted attack Chalmers was outstanding and struck up a fine understanding with McGrogan, a tricky winger. McGowan was a dashing leader with a powerful shot, but he was lacking in craft.
Source: Press & Journal, 12th October 1936