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Aberdeen 1 - 2 Motherwell

HT Score: Aberdeen 0 - 2 Motherwell

Aberdeen scorers: Smith 65.
Motherwell scorers: P Quinn 34, C Porter 37.

15/09/2007 | KO: 15:00

Dons lose out ahead of euro challenge

Aberdeen are still looking for their first home win of the season as they stuttered to defeat at Pittodrie this afternoon. The home side looked to be taking control of the match when Motherwell struck twice in the space of four minutes in the opening half. In the 34th minute Quinn drilled a low shot past Soutar from the edge of the box then three minutes later the Dons defence was ripped open allowing Porter to net. Aberdeen came out with purpose after the interval and the impressive Graeme Smith denied Lovell early in the half. Jamie Smith then netted a wonderful free kick from 22 yards out and it looked like Aberdeen could turn it round. However Motherwell stood firm and the home side appeared to run out of ideas as they now face the prospect of a tough European battle with Dnipro on Thursday night.

After a minute's applause in memory of Ian Porterfield, Motherwell kicked off towards the Richard Donald Stand. Chris Clark was a surprise choice at left back with Hart and Diamond playing in the centre of the defence. Motherwell created the first chance in the 5th minute when a free kick was played into the Dons box, but Soutar had no problems dealing with a weak header from Porter. Two minutes later Motherwell won the first corner of the match but Porter was penalised as he rose to meet the ball.

Aberdeen threatened in the 9th minute resulting in a nasty head knock to Derek Young. Seconds later Aberdeen won their first corner of the match and Diamond went close when Hughes cleared his header off the line. A minute later Smith was forced into a fine save as he tipped a Miller chip over the bar. At the other end Severin closed Hughes down as the Motherwell player went for goal. McNamara then took a kick on the head from Porter in the 14th minute and after an unnecessary delay by the referee, the defender eventually received treatment.

McNamara failed to recover and was replaced by Foster in the 17th minute as Clark moved to right back. Seconds later Diamond went close again when he headed a free kick over the bar. Motherwell threatened in the 21st minute with a neat chip that had Soutar scrambling backwards to tip over the bar. Three minutes later the Dons defence dithered and Clarkson almost pounced before the situation was recovered. A good move in the 26th minute gave Lovell a goal chance. A neat flick from Miller found his strike partner who cut inside then curled his effort wide of the far post.

A Motherwell corner on the half hour mark had McCormack firing well wide before Hart made a penetrating run that was eventually snuffed out. Aberdeen should have scored in the 32nd minute when first Clark fired in a cross from the right that was missed by Miller then Young returned the ball from the other flank and Nicholson stabbed the ball wide. A minute later Smith tested his namesake in the Motherwell goal, but the keeper held the shot well. Just as Aberdeen looked to be taking control the visitor's then went up the other end and grabbed a sensational lead.

Full back Quinn didn't look a threat as he collected the ball wide right on the edge of the Dons area and fired a low shot into the far corner beating Soutar all ends up. Aberdeen tried to hit back immediately and Smith made another great save from a low Nicholson drive before disaster struck when Motherwell grabbed a second in the 37th minute. Neat passing play ripped the Dons apart and Porter fired past the helpless Soutar to leave the Dons with a mountain to climb. Miller had a great chance to pull one back in the 38th minute when Clark swung in a wicked cross and Craigan was forced to head over his own bar.

From the resultant corner Miller headed wide from six yards when it looked easier to score. Diamond had a third attempt at goal in the 45th minute when he latched on to a free kick and headed the ball into the side netting. Soutar was then forced into a save to keep the score at two then Lovell picked up a knock late in the half. Clark fired in another dangerous cross in the dying embers of the half but once again the strikers failed to connect.

Motherwell started full of confidence and Craigan made a penetrating run down the right before Foster thwarted him. Smith denied Aberdeen again in the 48th minute when Lovell looked certain to score 12 yards out before the keeper pulled off a magnificent stop. Hart was then forced to scramble the ball clear in the 53rd minute before Clark had a decent effort from 30 yards a minute later. Severin received a strong lecture from referee McDonald as he quite rightly complained about the time wasting antics of goalkeeper Smith. The skipper was then cautioned for an innocuous challenge in the 59th minute while Smith continued to flaunt the rules.

Maguire replaced Derek Young on the hour mark and five minutes later Jamie Smith hit a wonderful free kick high into the net. Patterson made a rash challenge to concede the free kick and Jamie Smith gave Graeme Smith no chance from 22 yards as the keeper was finally beaten. Five minutes later Smith was tripped in exactly the same spot but this time he sent his effort inches over the bar. Aberdeen continued to press as the Steelmen were forced deeper. Motherwell had a similar free kick opportunity in the 75th minute but McGarry failed to emulate Jamie Smith and sent his effort well over. Mackie then replaced Lee Miller ina final roll of the dice.

Clark created space for himself in the 80th minute but his shot was well off target as the Dons looked to have lost their impetus. Time began to drain away and Aberdeen were now creating very little as they looked to have run out of ideas with Motherwell defending well. Motherwell won a corner in the final minute when Grabban hit a shot off a defender. Porter then went close as Aberdeen failed to get forward and a late free kick launched into the box failed to break the determined defence so the Dons now head into Europe on the back of an unexpected defeat.

Aberdeen Teamsheet
Soutar, McNamara (Foster 16), Clark, Severin, Diamond, Hart, Smith, Nicholson, Miller (Mackie 74), Lovell, Young (Maguire 59).

Unused Subs: Langfield, de Visscher, Aluko, Smith.

Bookings:  Severin (58).
Motherwell Teamsheet
G Smith, P Quinn, S Hughes, S Craigan, P O'Donnell (M Fitzpatrick 43), M Reynolds, D Clarkson (L Grabban 59), J Paterson, C Porter, S McGarry, R McCormack (K Lasley 66) Unused Subs: C Meldrum, W Kinniburgh, S Mensing, D Smith.

Bookings:  P Quinn 70
Attendance: 10,154
Venue: Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen
Referee: Dougie McDonald, Edinburgh
Next Match
10 Jul 2024 / 19:00 / Balmoor Stadium, Peterhead