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Aberdeen 0 - 1 St. Mirren

HT Score: Aberdeen 0 - 0 St. Mirren

St. Mirren scorers: Wardlaw 65

10/05/2011 | KO: 19:45

Young Team Beaten by Saints

The Dons roller coaster season looks to be finishing on a downward spiral after a second consecutive home defeat in front of only 5,955 fans. The win for St Mirren, their first at Pittodrie since 1987, means Hamilton Accies are officially relegated. It is the third time this season the Saints have beaten Aberdeen in the SPL.

It was not all doom and gloom tonight though. Aberdeen fielded one of their youngest teams in recent years and out of the squad of eighteen, twelve players were under the age of 21. Although the youngsters performed well, and the all round performance was far more committed, the Dons never really looked like scoring. They had plenty of possession but no cutting edge. This game had a real end of season feel to it.

The only goal of the game came on 64 minutes. From a corner Higdon won a header at the back post, Wardlaw held off Grimmer and his shot went past Langfield who was unsighted.

It was the only real chance St Mirren had the whole game.

At full time there were emotional scenes as Derek Young said goodbye to the Pittodrie fans.

The Dons lined up with Jack Grimmer at right back, Vujadinovic and Clark Robertson at centre half and Steven Smith at left back. In midfield it was Jack, Young, Milsom and Aluko. Paton and Maguire, who used to play upfront at U19 level together, were reunited.

After Saturday's disastrous performance the Dons started the game with more fire in their bellies and were much more committed in the tackle. On 15 minutes Vujadinovic was warned for a strong tackle on Wardlaw but it typified the effort in the early stages.

In the opening half hour there was little action of note. St Mirren were looking very nervous after some of their recent results and the game was very cagey.

Finally on theĀ half hourĀ mark something to wake the fans up. After good move Maguire played in Smith and his cross with his right foot was deflected wide for a corner. Milsom swung the ball in but it but St Mirren were able to clear their lines.

That seemed to spur the Saints into life and there were appeals for a penalty minutes later when Sone pushed Lee Mair and the former Aberdeen defender tumbled to the ground. The referee correctly waved away the half shouts from the visitors. Thomson then shot and the ball was deflected behind for a corner. Again like Aberdeen they could do nothing with their set-piece.

On 36 minutes, almost some excitement! The first shot of the game! Michael Paton hit one with his left foot from about 20 yards but the ball was always going wide.

Two minutes later and Milsom did well down the left and it looked as if he had got inside his man on the edge of the penalty area. The Englishman tumbled to the ground but the referee waved play on despite the protests from the Aberdeen players. On 40 minutes Ryan Jack cut inside from the right, went on a mazy run but his shot was blocked. This was more encouraging from the Dons though.

On 42 minutes Higdon won a free kick in a dangerous place. The striker took the free kick himself but the ball was headed clear by Vujadinovic who was winning everything in the air. The big defender had a solid game.

The second half started off at a better pace before becoming scrappy again.

St Mirren won a free kick which Travner swung in. McGowan headed in down and although Vujadinovic read the situation well he sliced the ball clear. It fell to Higdon but he also sliced it and the ball went harmlessly behind.

For the first time in the game St Mirren were enjoying more of the possession. Good defending by Grimmer led to another Saints corner. Before it could be taken the Dons a made a substitution with Paton being replaced by Magennis.

From the corner Higdon won a header at the back post despite being put under pressure by Robertson. The ball fell to Wardlaw who held off Grimmer and he acrobatically prodded the ball towards goal. Although Langfield went down for it he was unsighted and the ball squirmed into the net. An unfortunate break for the Dons. It was the only real chance St Mirren had the whole game.

It was virtually Wardlaw's last involvement of the game as he was replaced by Dargo shortly after that. On 70 minutes Ryan Jack came off and was replaced by Fraser Fyvie. Ryan was looking particularly jaded after a long season where he has become a regular and Craig Brown has been unable to rest him due to the injury list.

Aberdeen came to life a bit in the final period of the game. Smith set up Maguire and his effort went just a couple of yards wide. Probably the closest the Dons came to scoring all night. On 80 minutes Smith played in another good ball from the left. Gallacher, who had a very comfortable evening elected to punch the ball clear. It fell to the on rushing Fyvie but his first time effort was always going wide.

Smith was booked for tripping a St Mirren player before Grimmer went off to be replaced by Blackman. There was warm applause for Grimmer who was making his first ever start and he had a good game.

In the final stages Blackman was booked for taking out Barron. Maguire then put in a dangerous cross but no one made a move for it.

The final whistle saw emotional scenes as St Mirren celebrated their SPL survival and Derek Young, who was the last player to leave the field in what was his final home game for the club, received a standing ovation from the Red Army.

Aberdeen Teamsheet
Langfield, Robertson, Young, Vujadinovic, Smith, Paton (Magennis 64), Jack (Fyvie 70), Milsom, Aluko, Maguire, Grimmer (Blackman 87).

Unused Subs: Howard, Anderson, Shaughnessy, Low.

Bookings:  Young (72),  Blackman (89).
St. Mirren Teamsheet
Paul Gallacher, Lee Mair, John Potter, Darren McGregor, Gareth Wardlaw (Craig Dargo 68), Steven Thomson, Jim Goodwin, Jure Travner, David Barron (David van Zanten 90), Paul McGowan, Michael Higdon. Unused Subs: Craig Samson, Marc McAusland, Aaron Mooy, Jamie McKernon, Kenny McLean.

Bookings:  Gareth Wardlaw 48
Attendance: 5,955
Venue: Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen
Referee: Euan Norris,