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Aberdeen 1 - 0 Rangers

HT Score: Aberdeen 1 - 0 Rangers

Premier Division
Aberdeen scorers: Dodds 19.

22/11/1986 | KO: 15:00


Aberdeen supporters in the 23,500 crowd gave new manager, Ian Porterfield, a standing ovation as he headed for the dug-out. The game was boisterous as is usually the case in Aberdeen v. Rangers confrontations and the visitors had to play the whole of the second half with ten men after McPherson was sent off. In an atmosphere of high tension the eager Dons swept forward and John Hewitt and Davie Dodds tested the visitors' defence. The Light Blues - and their fans - claimed a penalty when Cooper fell in a tussle with Stewart McKimmie. Young Ferguson was recalled to the team but the Aberdeen midfielders were in no mood to play second fiddle. With two international goalkeepers, something special or unusual would be needed to produce a goal. Rangers almost scored when Munro's cutback just eluded Cooper and McCoist. With both teams still testing out each other, the opening goal suddenly arrived in 18 minutes. Fraser attempted a passback to Woods but razor sharp Hewitt anticipated the move and intercepted the pass to hit the ball off the advancing keeper. The ball spun high into the air to give Dodds an easy task of heading the ball into the net.
Typically Rangers reacted by surging upfield but the home defence was not troubled. The lively Joe Miller was by now beating Munro almost at will and, from one of his crosses, Bobby Connor's header beat Woods only for Butcher to knock the ball away. Butcher and Willie Miller were reading the game well and were marshalling their defences expertly. The first half ended dramatically, Aberdeen claimed a penalty when Stark was barged off the ball and, in injury time, McPherson elbowed Dodds in the face. The referee missed the incident but a linesman had seen it and after a short discussion between the two officials, McPherson was shown the red card.

Rangers resumed with Fraser alongside Butcher at the heart of their defence. Naturally the Dons pressed forward hoping to make their numerical advantage pay, but Butcher in particular was standing firm with numerous headed clearances. Joe Miller was still causing havoc on the right but the visiting rearguard would not buckle. In a breakaway McCoist missed a glorious chance to equalise when he could only tamely tap the ball to Jim Leighton from two yards out, from a Butcher head-flick. Rangers' revival seemed to be over when Nicholl lunged recklessly at Hewitt in the penalty box after a clever through ball from the on-form Jim Bett. The referee astonshed the home support and players by indicating that he believed Hewitt had "taken a dive". Next danger man Hewitt picked out Connor lurking menacingly in the visitors' box. The midfielder swept the ball past Nicholl and Woods but, unforunately, past the post as well. Rangers sent on Fleck for former Don Doug Bell, in the last quarter of an hour, but it could not stop the flow of traffic towards Woods.
With Aberdeen having the territorial advantage and Rangers defending tenaciously, it looked increasingly obvious that no more goals would be scored - and so it proved.

Source: Match Programme, 7th October 1995

Aberdeen Teamsheet
Leighton, McKimmie, Robertson, Stark, McLeish, Miller, Miller, Bett, Dodds, Connor, Hewitt.

Unused Subs: Weir, Wright.

Bookings:  McLeish (53).
Rangers Teamsheet
Woods, Nicholl, Munro, Ferguson D, McPherson!, Butcher, Fraser, Bell (Fleck 73), McCoist, Durrant, Cooper

Bookings:  McPherson 21,   Bell 34,   McPherson 45  McPherson 45
Attendance: 21,733
Venue: Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen
Referee: T. Muirhead, Renton
Next Match
27 Jul 2024 / 15:00 / Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen