Aberdeen kicked off and the first action was an unwelcome one as Sone Aluko picked up a head knock in the second minute. The Dons threatened a minute later when Mackie released Maguire inside the Kilmarnock box, but the Killie defence were able to clear. Miller and Ford then had a clash of heads as the match was delayed for a second time in the first five minutes. Aberdeen won their first corner of the match in the 9th minute after Maguire and Aluko combined well. Unfortunately Mulgrew swung the corner out of play and wasted the opportunity.
Kilmarnock had a penalty claim in the 12th minute when Bryson went down under a challenge from Langfield, but the Kilmarnock player earned a yellow card for his troubles. Maguire and Miller forced the second corner in the 15th minute and although the keeper was forced into a fine save Severin was harshly penalised for his challenge. Vidal went close in the 19th minute as he made a penetrating run into the box and fired inches wide of the far post.
Darren Mackie had the ball in the net when he steered a Mulgrew free kick past the keeper but the striker was clearly in an offside position despite the good finish. Lilley made a very rash challenge on Maguire in the 28th minute and incredibly referee McDonald awarded a throw in. Lilley could count himself lucky as this was his third or fourth poor challenge. A minute later a Mulgrew free kick caused problems as Miller went close before the ball was scrambled clear. Neither side were able to create any clear-cut chances and a goal now could prove decisive with five minutes of the half remaining.
Aluko was booked in the 41st minute after he was clearly fouled by Clancy and then kicked the ball away out of frustration when he was penalised for handling the ball in expectation of the obvious free kick. Another strange decision a minute later gifted Kilmarnock a free kick in a dangerous position, but fortunately Aberdeen defended well. Aluko then had the shirt practically pulled from his back but once again the incident was missed and the half ended in frustration for the Dons and a chorus of boos from the terraces as the officials left the field.
Kilmarnock were first to threaten after the break as the Dons defenders appeared to stand still before Mulgrew put his foot through the ball and cleared. A corner followed quickly and then Pascali took an outrageous dive in the box, but escaped punishment. Kilmarnock went close again in the 51st minute, but Hamill clearly handled the ball in the build up and the assistant must have seen the incident. Fortunately Langfield made a fine save and the ball was eventually looped over the bar.
It was all Kilmarnock at this stage and Aberdeen looked as though they hadn't started yet. Mackie hit a tame effort in the 55th minute that was easily gathered by Combe, but it was the first threat that the Dons had made since the re-start. Aberdeen were frantically clearing their lines again a minute later as the Dons play had become littered with mistakes. Miller had a glimpse of goal on the hour mark and his shot was blocked by a hand, but fortunately for Kilmarnock the assistant had flagged Miller offside.
A minute later Pascali made a dangerous challenge on Miller that earned a caution. A minute later there were loud appeals for handball inside the Kilmarnock box, but nothing was given. Maguire earned a booking as Aberdeen reverted to a 4-3-3 formation. The Dons won their first corner of the half in the 65th minute but Diamond headed over. Duff replaced Maguire a minute later, but the Dons frustrations continued as Ford flicked the ball out for a corner only for referee McDonald to award a goal kick.
The crowd were lifted in the 74th minute when Jamie Smith replaced Mackie as the Dons looked for the elusive winner. It was Kilmarnock who almost grabbed the lead a minute later as the Dons defence was ripped apart and Bryson smashed the ball off the post with Langfield beaten. Aberdeen tried to hit back and great play by Aluko opened up the play before Kerr fired wide after a great turn. The crowd were incensed in the 78th minute when Aluko was dragged to the ground only for referee McDonald to award the free kick to Kilmarnock. An award to Aluko a minute later was met with sarcastic applause from the red army. The free kick produced a massive scramble before the ball was cleared. Lilley committed his umpteenth foul as he upended Aluko but once again he escaped punishment despite a warning from the referee earlier in the match. A minute later Aluko dragged a shot inches wide of the target and in the 85th minute the Englishman was again off target as he collected the ball from Miller.
At the start of the move Lilley took Duff out of play and although the referee played a good advantage he should have cautioned the player when play stopped. A minute later Severin went close only to watch his volley blocked by team mate Zander Diamond. With two minutes remaining Smith cut inside and drilled in a low shot that was blocked for a corner. The corner was too long but Aberdeen kept up the pressure as they looked for a late winner. Another corner in the 90th minute was cleared before the fourth official indicated three minutes of injury time. A Kerr shot was again deflected for a corner but once again the Kilmarnock defence, as they had all afternoon, held firm.