What was practically the opening game of the season at Aberdeen was witnessed at Pittodrie on Saturday afternoon, when Aberdeen lined up against Partick Thistle, before a spectatorate numbering close in on 6000. The contest was for First Division League points, and as this is Aberdeen's first season as a First Division club, more than the usual interest was manifested in the event. The teams were:- Aberdeen: Macfarlane; Murray, Brebner; Halkett, Strang, H. Low; Robertson, Henderson, Ward, McAulay, Lennie. Partick Thistle: Howden; Harvey, McKenzie; Gibson, Melville, Wilson; Sommen, W. Gray, Kennedy, R. Gray, C. Hamilton. Referee - Mr. Cooke, Newton.
Partick won the toss, and sent to Aberdeen to defend the east goal in the face of a stiff breeze and a drenching shower. Aberdeen broke away through McAulay on the left, but the Partick right back intervened and cleared. Play was rugged and exciting, and it was quite evident that the Aberdeen players had not settled down. Lennie got away on a great run on the Aberdeen left. He centred, but Ward was late in getting up, and although he knocked the back off the ball, Howden sprang out and cleared in brilliant style amid a crowd of opponents. A 'cute pass in ahead of McAulay looked dangerous, but Harvey dashed in, and punted up the field. Partick then went to the other end, and Macfarlane had to handle twice, his second save being a characteristically brilliant one. McAulay was next cheered for tricky work, but when Lennie attempted the same thing the ball went over the touch line. Partick had a dangerous run to the other end, and Sommen's shot from the pitch line was sent behind by Brebner. Partick pressed hard, and their reward came, Kennedy from thirty yards out finding the net with a rocket shot, which Macfarlane handled, but failed to hold. It was a brilliant goal, and was deserved on play. This reverse somewhat damped the enthusiasm of the Aberdeen's supporters, as the vigorous play of the Southerns was not at all to their liking. After a tricky piece of play by McAulay, Ward got the ball and let Lennie away, but Harvey stepped in and punted up the field. Partick went to the other end very quickly, and Kennedy all but did the trick, Macfarlane dashing out and turning the ball aside as it left Kennedy's foot. The Aberdeen men had a run to the other end, and Robertson was roughly brought down when on the run. From the foul which followed a scrimmage took place. Henderson, with a neat overhead kick tried Howden, who cleared with remarkable speed. The Partick right wing were giving Low and Brebner no end of worry. An exciting moment in front of the Partick goal was relieved by a foul against McAulay for jumping. The Aberdeen forwards then worked up, and the pass to Lennie was cleverly picked up by that player, who sent the ball across the field to Henderson, who sent in a swift, oblique shot, which was just a yard wide. Robertson and Henderson between them spoiled a beautiful pass from Lennie, and Partick made off eastwards; the outside right, however, failing at the critical moment to pick up Kennedy's pass. And a dash to the other end by the Aberdeen forwards looked likely, and McAulay a yard inside the by-line, but in a very awkward position, essayed a shot at the Partick goal. The ball sailed over the cross-bar. Henderson, who was the best shot of the match, so far, in the Aberdeen side, tried Howden severely, but the Partick custodian was equal to the occasion, and cleared in brilliant style. Lennie, beating all opposition, went racing towards Howden, but Harvey, chasing behind, tripped him in very nasty fashion. The referee gave the foul, and he also gave Harvey a word of caution. Ward was now showing his reputed form. He tricked Melville in beautiful style, and shot low but somewhat soft, and Howard and had no difficulty in clearing. Ward again broke through, and when tackled, passed ahead, but again his judgment was at fault. The ball was sent out to Hamilton, who, barring Murray, had a clear field.
When the second half of the game started there would be close on 7000 spectators present. A foul against Halkett caused anxiety, but the ball was sent away. He came back, however, and Billy Brebner got his head upon it. Relief was not got, however, until R. Gray fouled by taking the ball with his forearm. The Aberdeen half-backs were now a much improved trio, and thanks to their efforts, Partick seldom got away. Robertson missed a very likely shot from a clean pass. Kennedy after saving in brilliant fashion, had to look lively in a few seconds, a low shot from Henderson's foot causing him to throw himself full length. From the press-box, unfortunately situated in the most awkward position in the field, it looked as if a goal had to be scored, but unfortunately for Aberdeen, Henderson's well directed shot was just a few inches wide. For some time Partick were pretty much confined to their own territory, but they ultimately broke away again, and showed that they still meant business, there visitations to Mcfarlane's end being too frequent and dangerous to be comfortable for the homesters. As the close of the game drew near, it became apparent from play that the result was decided, with the result that interest fell away to a great extent. The closing minutes saw the teams fighting it out in mid-field and when the whistle sounded the score was:- Partick Thistle 1, Aberdeen 0. The gate amounted to £156.
Source: Aberdeen Daily Journal, 21st August 1905