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Aberdeen 2 - 3 Dumbarton

HT Score: Aberdeen 1 - 1 Dumbarton

Div 1 (Old)
Aberdeen scorers: Main, Soye.
Dumbarton scorers: Speedie (pen), Pender, Pender

20/12/1913 | KO:

Tale of Irony and Ill-Luck

At Aberdeen, before 6000 spectators. This proved one of the most remarkable games seen at Pittodrie for some time, the issue being in doubt right up to the closing stages, when two goals were scored in as many minutes. The first half was evenly contested, the defence on each side being superior to the attack. After thirty minutes, Main put Aberdeen on the lead from a corner kick, but Speedie equalised almost immediately from a penalty. In the second half, Pender broke through the Aberdeen ranks and put Dumbarton ahead. Aberdeen attacked in desperate fashion after this, and were unfortunate not to score. Two minutes from time, Pender again beat the defence and scored a third goal for Dumbarton, while in the last minute Soye scored for Aberdeen from a corner. The match was exciting in the closing stages, and Aberdeen just failed to draw level. They were unlucky losers. Result:- Dumbarton, 3 goals; Aberdeen, 2.

Source: The Scotsman, 22nd December 1913

Aberdeen appear quite unable to shake off the spell of misfortune which has followed the club since the start of the present season. At Pittodrie on Saturday they made a bold attempt to avenge their memorable Cup tie defeat from Dumbarton in February last, but far from attaining their object the sustained their 13th league defeat of the season, Dumbarton beating them at Pittodrie by 3 goals to 2 after a remarkable game. In certain respects, the result is a travesty of justice inasmuch as on the run of the game Aberdeen should have won and to spare, but the ill-luck which appears to dog a team down at heel like Aberdeen followed their efforts throughout. On at least four occasions in a sensational second half nothing but the nearest chance kept them from scoring, and while their finishing left much to be desired, the incidence refer to head and discouraging effect on the team, as they were tantalising to the 5000 spectators whose hearts have become hard and to failure this season.

Dumbarton one not so much on their merits has on the fact that they took advantage of their chances. They were withal a clever side, much better balanced than Aberdeen, and as a combination superior at half-back and forward. Few defences would have shown up so well as did that of Dumbarton against a desperate attacks are Aberdeen, especially in the second half. Dumbarton, too, were a less robust side than the Pittodrie team, and their victory, while it was lucky, was at the same time in some respects a triumph of skill over brute force. There were numerous little incidents in the course of the play which, had they been otherwise, might have turned the course of the game; but the fact remains that Dumbarton one because they took the game as it went and grabbed at every in vantage that came their way.
If their goalkeeper was aided by fortune in stirring stages of the second period, he never lacked for support, and if Aberdeen had been less moody and followed the example of the visitors, and vastly different story might have been told. No team can help or hinder their bad luck, and Aberdeen suffered badly from the fickle goddess, but when chances are muddled, both by defence and attack, as they were on Saturday, they are not blameless for the defeat.


For 20 minutes of the game on Saturday each gave as it got. Invasion was met with invasion, and in the period there was little to choose between the teams, say that the Dumbarton half-backs were more attentive to their forwards and were the Aberdeen trio. At the end of the period Aberdeen began to assumed the ascendancy. Wilson and Soye both had good efforts, and main had the first ill-luck of the day by hitting the outside of the upright from a clearance by Bryson. Then Aberdeen got their reward, but it was only in keeping with their wretched lock that the goal they got was disallowed. Bryson was penalised for carrying, and a free-kick was given in the penalty area. Wyllie crash the ball into the net, but he had done so before the whistle had gone and the players properly lined up, and was ordered to retake the kick.


A corner resulted, and this, finely taken by Scorgie, was headed through by Main. The lead was not long for Aberdeen. Hannah charged Blythe in the rear inside the penalty area, and Speedie equalised with a well-taken penalty goal. For the 10 minutes until the interval Aberdeen kept up a running attack on the visitors' goal, but the brilliant defence kept them out. Main made a desperate effort to net the forward pass from Robertson, and was injured and had to retire. Wilson, McLeod, and Soye all had efforts of goal, but Bryson and his backs set up a magnificent defence. On the rally in the closing stages of the first half Aberdeen deserved to lead at the interval, but as it was they had to be content to cross over on level terms of one goal each.


Aberdeen were without Main for 5 minutes after resuming, and the period was fatal to them. Pender followed up a return by his defense, and the ball bounced in front of Greig. The keeper hesitated to clear, and the visitors' centre rushed the ball through. The Aberdeen players were amazed at the sensational turn of events, but, recognizing that difficulties were made but for to be overcome, the set themselves to get level. For half an hour they tried by every wile in their power to Pierce the Dumbarton defence, but the result was tantalising to the players as it was well nigh heartbreaking to the spectators.


At times, throwing science to the wind, the Aberdeen forwards hurled themselves against the rock-like defence of the opposition, but all to no purpose. Scorgie sent right across an open goal, and the ball rolled harmlessly past by inches; Soye was left with a good chance, but shot behind; Main cannoned in a terrific shot that went inches high; Robertson and McLeod were left with a rare chance in the penalty area, but the hesitated. These facts were significant of the misjudgments of the Aberdeen players when in good positions, but there was as great a host of incidents which showed the real bad luck that dogged the side. Scorgie cannoned in a terrific shot which struck Bryson and rebounded clear; Main beat the backs and crashed in a terrific shot. Its stock Bryson's outstretched leg, and once again Dumbarton were saved. Then Wyllie made one gigantic effort. He rushed through the opposition and physically knocked all before him, and at the last moment essayed the forward pass to Main, who was rushing on in front, when Bryson dashed out and the ball struck his arm and was deflected into safety. Under circumstances such as these Aberdeen could not be held otherwise than unlucky, but worse was to follow.


Just when Aberdeen looked most like getting on equal terms, Dumbarton actually increase their lead, and a manner also in which they did so was reminiscent of the fatal second goal in the memorable cup-tie at Dumbarton. The ball was punted to midfield, where Pender, ever ready, got possession, and taking advantage of a Aberdeen's concentration on attack, he raced through and obtained a third goal for his side. Worked into a state of desperation, Aberdeen bore down, and two shots were blocked by defenders before a corner was obtained. This was splendidly placed, and Soye headed through Aberdeen's second goal. After this Aberdeen made a last dying effort, but time and a resolute defence beat them, and they were the same unlucky losers as at Shawfield the preceding Saturday, and further entrench themselves at the bottom of the league table.

Source: Aberdeen Daily Journal, 22nd December 1913

Aberdeen Teamsheet
Greig, Colman, Hannah, Wilson, Wyllie, Low, Soye, McLeod, Main, Robertson, Scorgie.
Dumbarton Teamsheet
Bryson; Keir, McAlpine; Riddell, Gildea, Speedie; Ferguson, Blythe, Pender, McConnell, Thom
Attendance: 5,000
Venue: Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen
Referee: Mr. Dougaray, Nitshill
Next Match
03 Dec 2023 / 15:00 / Easter Road, Edinburgh