In ousting Heart of Midlothian by the only goal scored at Pittodrie, Aberdeen were singularly fortunate, for on the run of the play the visitors ought actually to have won. Only some 4000 spectators witnessed the game, in which what little good football was shown came from the Hearts. The visitors had Sinclair and R. Walker off, both assisting Scotland to victory at Belfast, and in the side that took the field there were only three of the victorious cup tie eleven, while, of course, Aberdeen were at full strength. Under the circumstances, the visitors performed decidedly well, and, indeed, had they equalised and won, few could have grudged them victory. As it was, they both called the tune, and paid, too. Their outfield work was far ahead of Aberdeen's, but it all went for nothing when opposed to the sterling defence of the Pittodrie team. Hearts generally were a much better balanced side, and their own weakness in front of goal, coupled with the stubborn defence opposed to them kept them from securing a well-merited win. Aberdeen's outside men were decidedly smart with the ball, and the repeatedly got past the opposition, only to see their good work being nullified by the weakness of the inside forwards, who were as ineffective and listless a trio as ever toed a ball. The home halves were consistently good throughout, and the backs and goalkeeper were always steady. Against this Hearts had a much superior forward line, the showed some good glimpses of combination. They were smarter on the ball than the home lot, and made ground far quicker. Their half-backs were scarcely up to the standard of the home trio, but their backs were good as a pair, Taylor, a left defender, compensating for the few failures of his partner, while the goalkeeper was never seriously tested, although he misjudged the shot that beat him. There was much of a premature end-of-season element in the game, and throughout the spectators got little to enthuse over in an atmosphere which was more favourable for playing than for witnessing the game.
The game was 35 minutes old before trickery by Lennie and Wood saw the latter beat Heatlie from 15 yards with a fast grounder. Up to this stage play had been well distributed, both defences proving much too good for the attack. Aberdeen had been slightly more the aggressive side, but the forwards were too slow and finessed far too much to be effective, while their attempts at grounding the visiting backs were crude. Hearts on the other hand had many dangerous raids on the home goal, and only the brilliance of Colman, Hume, and Wyllie kept their work from materialising. Once McPherson and Reid got clean through, and only a brilliant rush in by Colman saved the situation. On other occasions Sauer very threatened danger to the home goal, but in his case, too, the defence was all powerful.
For the first 10 minutes of the second half Hearts were much superior, and kept the home forwards from seeing much of the ball. Just as before, however, they were baulked by a determined defence, and gradually Aberdeen again came into the picture. They flattered only to deceive, however, and try as they might the home forwards could not strike a happy medium. Walker sent the ball into the net, but offside had sounded long before, while later he and Soye both drove recklessly wide. After good work by Wilson, Davidson had a splendid drive which Heatlie saved at the expense of a fruitless corner. In the closing stages, Hearts' strove hard to equalize, and just before the whistle blew Reid sent wildly past from Abrams cross by confronted with an open goal. The spectators were greatly disappointed with the quality of the football shown, and in the main their sympathies were with the losers.
Source: Aberdeen Daily Journal, 18th March 1912