Scots, Inferior in First Half, Improve After Interval
CARDIFF FAIL TO TAKE EARLY CHANCES
Armstrong Scores Dons' Goal: Smith s Spectacular SavesThose who went to Ninian Park, Cardiff, last night under the impression that craft, subtle scheming and ball jugglery were exclusive to Scottish football must have been surprised by the manner in which Cardiff City held Aberdeen. The game - one of the best staged in Cardiff for a long time - ended in a draw of a goal each, but if Cardiff City had taken their chances in the opening half they would have won by a few goals. Indeed, during this period Cardiff City's football had all the elements which the traditional Scottish game is reputed to possess, and there was not the clashing of styles one had been led to anticipate. There was method and virility in Cardiff City's play in their brilliant opening spurt, and Aberdeen were probably taken out of the stride by the pace, purpose and precision behind all Cardiff's endeavours.
Match of CharacterIt took Aberdeen some time to recover from Cardiff's spirited start, but they came to their own after the interval, when the technique, timing and tone of their football added to the joys of a spectacular game. It was a match with character. First Cardiff City showed that they had the talent to express all that best in football, and then Aberdeen, in a second-half revival, gave the game a classical touch by the accuracy of their passing and intelligent positional play, rendered all the more effective by the art of anticipation. After appearing to be a beaten side, Aberdeen came very near to winning the game in the second half, but it would have been an injustice had they won by the penalty which was awarded them after they had scored the equalising goal.
Poetic JusticeVery few people on the ground seemed to know what the penalty was given for, and it was a case of poetic justice when Thomson's shot crashed against the upright and rebounded to safety. It was not merely an exhibition game. There was keenness and virility in every movement, and it was very obvious that Aberdeen were very jealous of their reputation and fought harder than ever when defeat was staring them in the face. They were out to save the prestige of Scottish football, and they certainly succeeded after the interval. In the opening half, however, Cardiff City were always the better side - superior not only in the finer phases, but in the smoothness with which their movements were developed. Half-backs were ever ready to move forward with the attack, and they worked the ball just as skilfully as the Scottish masters. The only blemish was again a lack steadiness in front of goal, although Williams's enthusiasm all but met with success on two occasions. It was nearly all Cardiff for a time, but it was not until five minutes before the interval that Riley gave them the lead.
Brilliant GoalIt was a brilliant goal. Attley recovered the ball from the line, and, switching it back to Kiley, gave him a chance which the Aberdeen defence did not expect. Riley flashed in a crash shot, and Smith, who had previously made some spectacular saves, was well beaten. Aberdeen's equaliser ten minutes after the interval was due to the thrust of Armstrong, always a lively and fast raider. He evaded a challenge by Granville, and, shooting on the run, beat Deighton completely. After that it was parry and thrust, with each side in turn attacking brilliantly, but cool defences, positioning themselves well, met every approach with confidence.
Source: Press & Journal, 21st April 1936