DONS BREAK RUN OF "HOME" FAILURES AT ARBROATH'S EXPENSE
THOMSON, THE HERO OF MATCH, TRIES HARD TO INSPIRE INEFFECTIVE FORWARDSIt was a welcome change for Aberdeen supporters to leave Pittodrie yesterday with the knowledge that their favourites had finished their run of " home " failures. It was a fine incentive to gaining that " happy holiday " spirit to have seen Arbroath lose by three goals to nil. There was no doubting Aberdeen's superiority, but they were in poor company. Much of the credit for the home team's success was due to Thomson, the left half, who scored two of the three goals. Thomson gave a fine display of forcing half-back play, and even when he had to go to right back as the result of an injury to McGill, his play was impressive. The forward play on both sides was poor. Strauss and Armstrong were well held by Becci and Gavin respectively, and the inside forwards, W. and G. Scott, were slow and lacked penetrative power. Arbroath were best served in defence, Becci and Gavin being outstanding. The Gayfield attack, like that of Aberdeen, did not impress at close quarters. The forward movements were disjointed, and only Christie and Mclnally caused any trouble. It seems that the Dons cannot complete a match without some player being injured. McGill was the victim yesterday. In the second half he received a leg injury and had to go outside right. This necessitated reorganisation of the home team. Thomson took the right back berth, Devine went to left half, George Scott to right half and Strauss to inside right.
NOT BRILLIANTThe Aberdeen defence was not brilliant, but proved equal to the task of holding the Arbroath attack. Johnstone's handling was confident, and although McGill was troubled at times by Christie he gave a serviceable display until he was injured. Newton was not a polished left back, but he was generally steady. Thomson took the honours of the day. He set the forwards a good example in the matter of shooting, and was a grand attacking half-back. When he went to right back his tackling and kicking were first-rate. Falloon never gave his old clubmate Adam a chance. He was a splendid defensive pivot. Devine worked hard, but lacked initiative. Not one of the Aberdeen forwards impressed. There was too much close passing and too little shooting. It was reflection on their play that a half back had to score two of their three goals. Arbroath had grand little back in Becci. He kept a tight grip of Strauss, and always had a smile whether he was giving or receiving shoulder charge. Gavin, the former Pittodrie player, who has been earning high praise since he went to Gayfield, was a smart defensive centre-half, and gave Armstrong no rope. Adams, at right half, was strong in the tackle, and tried hard to get the attack going. Christie and Mclnally were best in a poor forward line.
OFF-SIDE WELCOMEThe first thrill came after five minutes, when Adam, the former Aberdeen player, outwitted the Dons' defence to slip to Lowe. The winger, however, was off-side and a threatening movement was foiled. There was little in it, and when the Dons got going Strauss showed his paces on the right, beating Becci and Adam, before the half-back dispossessed him. A long, cross-field pass by Lowe saw Christie send in well-judged shot which Johnstone tipped over the bar for a corner. Aberdeen's first real attack came when from a Thomson clearance G. Scott let Armstrong away. Beset by defenders, the centre gave to Lang, but the winger's shot found the side net. There had been little liveliness so far, but something brighter came when G. Scott sent the ball inches over from an Armstrong slip. Johnstone raised a cheer when, with Lowe rushing on him in an attempt to catch a long Mclnally punt, he left his charge and kicked clear.
ARMSTRONG MAKES SUREAberdeen gained the lead in the twenty-seventh minute. From a G. Scott pass Lang was given a clear view of the goal, but his shot was pushed out by Robertson. Armstrong fastened on to find the net. Matters were becoming more lively, and two minutes later Aberdeen went further ahead. Thomson took a free Kick just outside the penalty box. His shot was blocked by a defender, but he caught the rebound, and sent the ball crashing into the corner of net. A splendid effort! Play again deteriorated and while each side attacked in turn there was little to quicken the pulses of the spectators. Close the interval a pass back by Newton brought a corner for Arbroath, but the flag kick was cleared. Arbroath started off the second half strongly, and forced the attack although Johnstone was not in action. Then W. Scott weaved his way through, but Robertson was on the mark and cleared. Aberdeen again attacked, and G. Scott was in good position when Becci nipped in to send behind for a corner, which was cleared.
IN DEADLY FORMThomson was in deadly shooting form, and it was he who was responsible for the Dons going further ahead. From twenty yards range he whipped the ball through a crowd of players past Robertson. Lang had the ball in the net but the point was disallowed as Armstrong had previously handled. McGill had to leave the field when he collided with an Arbroath forward. He resumed after attention and went to the outside-right position. Gavin was a sprightly centre-half for the Red Lichties, and he was cheered when, after dispossessing W. Scott, he eluded Lang to clear smartly. Arbroath were plucky and never gave up trying, and Christie grazed the bar with a fine effort from the left. The Dons, despite the changes that had been necessary in their formation, continued to have the better of matters. Thomson had a great run upfield. beating three opponents and getting in a lovely shot which Robertson did well to stop.
Source: Press & Journal, 28th September 1937