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St. Mirren 1 - 4 Aberdeen

HT Score: St. Mirren 0 - 2 Aberdeen

St. Mirren scorers: Thompson 88.
Aberdeen scorers: Hayes 9, McGinn 45, Clark 85, Reynolds 87.

10/11/2012 | KO: 15:00

Rampant Dons Down Buddies

Aberdeen took a 2-0 lead into the interval at Paisley despite the home side enjoying the bulk of the possession. The Dons started in an unfamiliar 4-3-3 formation with a front three of Fraser, McGinn and Hayes. After soaking up some early pressure the Dons launched their first attack in the tenth minute and opened the scoring. Hayes lashing the ball into the net following good build up play by Magennis. Aberdeen doubled their advantage in the final minute of the half when great play from Fraser set up McGinn for his seventh goal in his seventh consecutive league match. The Dons controlled the second half, but it wasn't until the final five minutes that the goals flowed. Clark and Reynolds put the Dons 4-0 ahead and moved them into second place above Hibernian but thirty seconds later they slipped back to third as the defence switched off allowing Thompson a consolation. The only negative point in the game was the early substitution of Ryan Fraser following a shocking challenge that went unpunished. The youngster will be hoping he can recover to face Celtic next week.

Following a minutes silence in memory of Remembrance Sunday, the home side got the game under way. The fans appeared to still be observing the silence in the opening minutes of the match as little happened on the field of play. The fans were soon back in full voice as the game settled with Saints creating the first chance in three minutes, but the ball went harmlessly over. Saints had made the brighter start and won the first corner in the 7th minute forcing Langfield to punch clear. Aberdeen finally launched their first attack of the game in the 10th minute and grabbed the lead when Hayes lashed the ball into the net following good build up play by Magennis.

Two minutes later Langfield made a terrific save to keep the Dons ahead. Clark conceded a free kick and when it was whipped in to the box Langfield saw a Thompson header late but tipped it on to the bar. The first yellow card was then shown to McAusland for tripping Ryan Fraser. Chris Clark quickly followed him into the referee's book for a rash challenge. Fraser was getting disgraceful treatment from the home fans every time he touched the ball in the belief that the youngster had somehow dived for the initial booking. Fraser appeared unperturbed by the attention and just continued doing what he does best.

A second Saints corner in the 20th minute was well defended and a minute later a Thompson header went inches wide. Saints were enjoying most of the possession, but the Dons looked dangerous when they broke at speed. A free kick in the 27th minute was whipped in by Fraser, but Mair was first to react and cleared the danger with a firm header. Saints then forced a series of corners around the half hour mark as the Aberdeen defence struggled to clear their lines. Three minutes later Saints forced another two corners as the Dons were forced on to the back foot. Magennis went close to adding a second in the 34th minute as he showed great control before hitting a fierce shot that was well saved by the keeper.

Saints continued to enjoy the possession and in the final minute of the half Magennis picked up a yellow card after conceding in a dangerous area. Josh redeemed himself with a great clearance that allowed the Dons to break quickly through Osbourne. He threaded a great pass to Fraser and the youngster silenced the home crowd with a good run and precision pass to Niall McGinn who made it seven goals in seven league matches as the Dons doubled their advantage. What a great time to score the second goal now they needed to close this match out in the second half.

Josh conceded another free kick on the edge of the box early in the second half, but Considine managed to clear despite Thompson being all over him like a rash. Two minutes later Magennis was charging forward, but his cross was cut out by the keeper. At the other end Thompson sent an effort wide as the home side looked to get back into the match. Hayes went close in the 54th minute after being released by Fraser, but fired against the woodwork. Seconds later Saints were slack at the back and McGinn set up Fraser, but his effort was deflected wide for a corner. Saints were wobbling now and the keeper was forced into another save from Hayes.

Two minutes later there were loud shouts for a spot kick from the Saints fans as Imrie was caught in a tangle of legs. It would have been soft, but referee Finnie was not interested and to be fair the home players didn't make much of it. The Dons won a free kick on the hour mark, but Hayes' delivery was scrambled clear. There was then a shocking challenge on young Fraser, but referee Finnie didn't even award a free kick despite Fraser being badly hurt. Again the home crowd let themselves down with their reaction. The youngster failed to recover and was replaced by Vernon. It was hard to understand how that didn't even merit a free kick much less a yellow or red card. Let's hope the official was not influenced by the home support and that Fraser will recover to face Celtic.

In the 69th minute Hayes was taken out of the game resulting in a St. Mirren free kick much to the frustration of the travelling support. Three minutes later Chris Clark was brought down on the edge of the box and the free kick was touched to Magennis whose low shot was blocked by the wall. A second free kick was scrambled clear as Aberdeen started to enjoy lot more of the game. Hayes was then just too short to latch on to another cross as Saints were forced back. With ten minutes remaining the home side had some sustained pressure, but the Dons eventually tidied up at the back and with seven minutes remaining Langfield made another terrific save.

At the other end good build up play ended with a fine shot from McGinn, but the third decisive goal just wouldn't come. A misplaced header from Robertson gifted Saints another corner, but the ball was scrambled clear with five minutes left on the clock. The third goal did arrive courtesy of Chris Clark, but it was all down to good play from McGinn and a selfless pass from Scott Vernon. A minute later Reynolds grabbed the goal of the day when he went on a great run and hit a screamer from 18 yards. That goal put the Dons into second place above Hibernian, but thirty seconds later they slipped back to third as the defence switched off allowing Thompson a consolation. Nevertheless this was a great performance considering the injury list.

St. Mirren Teamsheet
Craig Samson, David van Zanten, 14Marc McAusland, Lee Mair, Paul Dummett, Gary Teale, Jon Robertson (Thomas Reilly 59), Kenny McLean, Dougie Imrie (Graham Carey 70), Sam Parkin (Lewis Guy 68), Steven Thompson. Unused Subs: Chris Smith, Anthony Brady, John McGinn, David Barron.

Bookings:  Marc McAusland (14).
Aberdeen Teamsheet
Langfield, Anderson, Considine, Reynolds, Magennis (Shaughnessy 90), Osbourne, Clark, Robertson, Hayes, McGinn (McManus 90), Fraser (Vernon 63).

Unused Subs: Rogers, Fallon, Smith, Brown.

Bookings:  Clark,  Magennis.
Attendance: 4,486
Venue: St Mirren Park (Greenhill Road), Paisley
Referee: Stephen Finnie