This was a Christmas cracker tor Dons' fans, as 21,000 watched Aberdeen dismantling Rangers in an exhilarating display of football. This result kept the Premier League race open, with the Dons 3 points behind the 'Gers. Jaunty Joe Harper was at his scintillating best in this game.
The Dons almost got the perfect start when a quick one-two between John McMaster and Joe Harper ended with a flashing shot by the former going inches past the post. Then Stuart Kennedy, up helping his forwards, had a shot blocked and then hammered the rebound over the bar. McMaster was eager to move forward and he unleashed a 20 yard shot which Kennedy pushed round the post. Rangers retaliated and, following good play by McLean and MacDonald, Russell had a shot palmed down by Bobby Clark. The supporters were enjoying some entertaining fare although the referee upset the home fans with some of his decisions. Rangers stepped up the pressure and Clark had to be nimble to save twice from Jardine crosses. It was a wide open game at this stage and Drew Jarvie and McMaster both went close with long-range efforts. On one occasion Greig sent the ball back to his keeper from the halfway line. Cooper, who had been little in evidence, smashed a left foot shot inches wide. There was pandemonium in the home ranks when the Dons broke the deadlock on the half-hour mark. A three man move involving Jarvie, Harper and Ian Gibson culminated in the last named driving the ball past Kennedy. The temperature on the pitch began to rise and fouls were becoming too prevalent. More joy came to the Dons and their fans in 41 minutes. A long clearance found Harper and, with the Light Blues' defence in disarray, Joe slipped the ball to Davie Robb and he closed in on Kennedy to drive the ball into the net at the far post. The Dons' swashbuckling display was enthralling the fans.
Knowing Rangers, they were bound to attack but there was no question of the Dons resting on their laurels. Willie Miller showed his usual masterly anticipation and made two vital interceptions. Brilliant play by Gibson and McMaster made an opening for Harper but he shot past. Eventually Greig was cautioned and then Parlane replaced the ineffective Smith. Within minutes Parlane almost scored and it took the combined efforts of Miller, Willie Garner and Chic McLelland to thwart him A third Aberdeen goal arrived in 75 minutes when Gibson split the defence with a great pass, enabling Harper to score easily. The referee spoke to Greig, MacDonald and Harper as the game became somewhat abrasive and a section of Rangers' fans in the Paddock invaded the pitch. Quick police action resolved the situation although there were calls for first-aid men Jarvie's elevation was just too high as he tried to lob the keeper after a Dom Sullivan cross, but, a minute later and 5 minutes from the end, Jarvie scored with one r his specials from the edge of the box when Harper rolled the ball into his path. Thus Harper had scored a goal and assisted in the scoring of the other three. It might have been 5-0 but Kennedy brilliantly saved a Harper shot from a Gibson lob. In the last minute Clark had an outstanding save from a McLean free kick. It had been a rollicking performance by the Dons.