Baird, who Scored Second Goal, Played 74 Minutes with Injured Nose
By NORMAN MACDONALD
SALUTE the Dons. Eleven red devils, they outfought and outshot Rangers at Pittodrie last night. It was a magnificent triumph of teamwork and courage.
And for sheer courage the palm goes to Archie Baird, the Dons' inside left. Sixteen minutes after the start he sustained a facial injury. It is suspected that he has fractured his nose, and he will undergo an X-ray examination to-day.
In spite of this handicap, Baird played tremendously hard throughout, and capped his best display of the season with the vital second goal. It was this goal that took the "ping" out of the Light Blues' challenge. Two victories over Rangers in a fortnight is football with the de luxe touch. It points to two things - signs of an Aberdeen revival and hopes that Rangers' monopoly of the major honours will be broken this season.
The Dons are on top of the world and on top of their section of the League Cup. If they can guarantee to play with the same determination and musketeer spirit in every match they will make football news this season.
With Morton at Pittodrie on Saturday in the final qualifying match, Aberdeen should coast home to the last eieht. It looks as if they will make Rangers accept the unusual role of runners-up.
They were a better team than the champions last night. They were right on top of the job from first to final whistle. They were more reliable than Rangers in defence and smarter and more virile in attack.
Every Aberdeen player tried 100 per cent, for ninety minutes. It was a triumph of teamwork but, even so, there were outstanding individuals.
High on the list comes Alec Young, the Dons' centre-half find from Blantyre Vics. He went rampaging into the Ibrox attack like a miniature whirlwind.
Greased lightning in the tackle, he stopped the clever Thornton and later clamped the brakes on Paton when the inside left took over the leadership in the closing twenty minutes.
It was his first appearance at Pittodrie in a competitive game and the crowd could not but be impressed bv this up-and-coming young man who a few short months ago was playing junior football.
For cool and intelligent full-back play Shaw gets full marks. He had Waddell on a tight rein. The left back played a real captain's part.
And a pat on the back, too, for Martin in goal. He had none too happy an experience at Shawfield last Saturday, but the big fellow did not allow that to upset him last night. He was safe.
Harris got through a power of useful work at half back and gave the men in front good service.
The attack found the missing punch. After they got the second goal they produced some neat and attractive combined football. They had the famous Ibrox "iron curtain" a trifle threadbare.
Hamilton was an enthusiastic leader, but unfortunately he received the ball too often in the air. This aerial football gave the lanky George Young a big advantage over the centre.
There was considerably more enterprise on the wings than against Clyde. Hather was always a potential source danger on the left. His speed troubled Lindsay and it was his penchant for doing the unexpected that produced the opening goal.
Boyd showed definite signs last night of filling the bill at outside right. He is clever on the ball and had a lively second half. Yorston was not so prominent, but he was generally in the thick of the fight. The Dons always looked more like winners than Rangers even in the first half, although it ended in a goal-less draw.
The Ibrox attack will require pepping up if the Light Blues mean to stay in the forefront this season. Twice they made positional changes and in the last twenty minutes Paton went to centre forward and Thornton to inside left. The changes failed to bring success.
The first goal that set the 42,000 crowd rocking arrived nine minutes after the start of the second half.
Anderson came out of a tackle with Cox with the ball. Hather had raced into the middle. He gained possession, lost the ball, recovered and sent in a surprise packet from twenty-five yards range.
It was a surprise for Brown, the Rangers 'keeper. He seemed to have the ball covered, but unaccountably he failed to stop it.
A display of tenacious spirit on the part of Baird produced the second goal in fifteen minutes. Brown and Young went for a header from the inside left. The big centre half nodded the ball out, but Baird had followed up. He lunged forward and headed into the net.
That goal made Aberdeen and finished Rangers.
Source: Press & Journal, 31st August 1950