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Dundee United 0 - 2 Aberdeen

HT Score: Dundee United 0 - 2 Aberdeen

Scottish Premiership
Aberdeen scorers: Rooney 19, Rooney 33.

13/12/2014 | KO: 15:00

Dons Dubliner with Deadly Double in Dundee

Match Summary

Adam Rooney's double capped a superb all round performance from The Dons at Tannadice in a game they dominated from start to finish

A brace from Rooney during an outstanding first half displayed earned the Dons all three points as Dundee United suffered their first defeat at Tannadice since the start of May, when Aberdeen were also the victors. It is also the first time the Dons have won three successive league games in a row at Tannadice since 1966/67, 67/68 and 68/69.

Aberdeen deservedly went ahead in the 19th minute when Niall McGinn's free kick was met by David Goodwillie and his free header was parried by Radoslaw Cierzniak with Rooney following up to score.

Scott Brown made a great block to keep out Chris Erskine who was clean through, and then in 34th minute the Dons grabbed their second after a lovely chip over the top by Hayes and a shot from Considine was diverted in by Rooney, goal number 17 for the season.

Niall McGinn also hit the woodwork twice as the Dons completely dominated the first half. After the break there was less excitement but still a very solid and professional performance from the players in white which allowed them to see out the game comfortably.

Goodwillie, Rooney and Pawlett could have added a third which would have taken Aberdeen above United in the league but the 3466 Aberdeen fans won't be too concerned about that tonight.
Match Report

Derek McInnes named the same starting XI for the third game running. So they lined up at Tannadice with Brown in goal, Logan at right back, Taylor and Reynolds in the centre with Considine at left back. Jack was the sitting midfielder. Alongside him in the middle was Hayes and Pawlett with Rooney wide left, McGinn wide right and Goodwillie upfront.

In the opening stages there were a couple of crosses from both teams which came to nothing. On 3 minutes Sean Dillon had a back header to his keeper. The United captain did not see Pawlett coming in behind and the Dons midfield was very close to nipping in and getting the ball. Then a minute later Niall McGinn hit the woodwork. His shot was deflected and looped up beyond the United keeper and he could only stand and watch as the ball bounced off the bar and behind for the games first corner. The Dons were dominating the early proceedings and importantly they had settled very quickly. They were certainly on top possession wise.

On 9 minutes Logan's cross from the right was just too high for Rooney. A minute later McGinn's cross also from the right found Rooney at the front post but he could not direct his header on target. Aberdeen were enjoying a lot of success down the right and all afternoon the United defence could not deal with Logan and McGinn. The two Dons players also did very well together defensively, Niall on numerous occasions tracked back to help his full back.

On 12 minutes another cross from the right, this time Ryan Jack played over a low ball which Cierzniak gathered at the second attempt. On 13 minutes Reynolds was forced to put the ball behind for a corner after a dangerous cut-back. The game as expected was being played at 100 miles an hour. On 15 minutes Hayes tried his luck from distance but his shot was always sailing over the bar. A minute later the Dons forced a couple of corners. The ball eventually fell nicely for Taylor in the box but he could not get over it properly and his shot went over.

Then on 19 minutes Aberdeen took a deserved lead.

Pawlett had been fouled about 35 yards out. The ball was played in by McGinn who picked out an unmarked Goodwillie. The striker was quite a bit out and could only direct his header towards Cierniak. The ball though took a nasty bounce in front of the keeper who failed to gather and Adam Rooney was the first to react and was able tap home from about five yards. A soft goal from United's point of view but credit to Rooney for being so alert.

Back came United and on 22 minutes Paul Paton fired in a thunderbolt from about 30 yards which only just went over Brown's bar. Seconds later Aberdeen went up the park and carved United open. Rooney picked the ball up in the box but he slipped his shot just past the far post.

On 23 minutes Dillon headed over after United had been given a free kick in a good area. Although he won the header the Dons defence did enough to make sure he could nothing with it. Then a minute later Goodwillie did brilliantly inside the box to hold the ball up and shield it. He then tried to lay the ball into the path of Pawlett and very nearly found him.

Then on 25 minutes a massive moment in the game. Ciftci was given space inside the Dons half, about the only time this happened all afternoon. He played a brilliant pass through to Erskine who beat the offside trap. At first viewing he did look offside. The United man was clean through and had time to set himself but Brown made a great block. The keeper closed down the space very quickly and managed to make the save at the edge of the area. Very good goalkeeping.

On 26 minutes Hayes, who was once again outstanding in his new central role, played Goodwillie in but the striker could not find the target from a tight angle. Then three minutes later, after a sweeping Aberdeen move, Rooney crossed from the left and Goodwillie rather got under the ball and could not direct his header goalward.

It was still all Aberdeen at this point and on the half hour mark Cierzniak made a decent save at his near post after Pawlett had burst into the box.

The Dons then got their rewards for their dominance on 32 minutes. Jonny Hayes played a delightful chipped ball into the area which the United defence failed to deal with. Pawlett first of all had a go before the ball fell to Andrew Considine. The Dons left back appeared to have a shot, which he admitted to afterwards! His shot failed to hit the target but was actually a very nice cross for Rooney who was again in the right place to steer the ball home.

Aberdeen continued the onslaught and United had no answer to the Dons movement upfront. On 36 minutes Andrew Considine, who was outstanding today, put in a couple of very dangerous crosses, one of which Niall McGinn very nearly got a touch to. And then on 27 minutes, Considine put over another ball which fell to McGinn at the back of the area. The Northern Irishman took one touch before hammering a shot which beat the keeper but hit the post, went a long the goal line before being cleared. So close! That is the third week in a row Niall has hit the woodwork, and he had done it twice this afternoon.

Towards the end of the half Pawlett was booked then the Dons midfielder made another burst into the box before going down under a challenge from Rankin. Referee Crawford Allan waved play on.

HT 0-2

At half time United made a change with Souttar being replaced by Callum Morris. The second half was certainly not as exciting as the first, but it was just as good a performance from the Dons as they controlled proceedings.

United did have little spells of pressure and forced a couple of corner at the start of the half but Taylor, Reynolds and Considine all made good blocks and some good headed clearances. Scott Brown never had one save of note to make in the second half which shows you how well the defence did. Ryan Jack also deserves a mention as he was outstanding in the middle of the park. He broke up numerous United attacks and always made himself available when ever Aberdeen had the ball.

Aberdeen crucially had not allowed United back into the game and the home side were beginning to run out of ideas. In fact the Dons had a great chance to get a third on 61 minutes after Goodwillie was put in but his shot just went over the bar.

On 61 minutes Rankin was replaced by Mackay-Steven and then on 65 minutes the only real chance of the second half for United. From a corner the ball fell to Dow but he never connected with his shot as well as he would have liked and Reynolds was able to make the block. On 71 minutes Dow was replaced by Aidan Connolly.

Aberdeen then took the sting out of the game and by this time United knew they were beat. The Dons enjoyed some good spells of possession and just slowed the game right down. On 81 minutes they should have got a third when Goodwillie played a great pass through to Pawlett. The midfield was one on one with Cierniak but the United keeper was able to block and the ball looped up and just went over the bar. In the final ten minutes Aberdeen had a couple of half chances and United also had a couple of slight chances but on both occasions they failed to find the target. Fojut did put a shot just past the post in the final minute but Brown appeared to have it covered.

A very good defensive display in the second half, to go with a superb attacking display in the first half, meant this was a very good all round display by the Dons who again seem to be getting some momentum going in the month of December.
Dundee United Teamsheet
01.Radoslaw Cierzniak, 02.Sean Dillon, 03.Conor Townsend, 04.John Souttar (14.Callum Morris 46), 05.Jaroslaw Fojut, 06.Paul Paton, 08.John Rankin (11.Gary Mackay-Steven 63), 10.Stuart Armstrong, 17.Christopher Erskine, 18.Ryan Dow (22.Aidan Connolly 72), 07.Nadir Ciftci. Unused Subs: 20.Calum Butcher, 21.Charles Telfer, 24.Blair Spittal, 26.Michal Szromnik.

Bookings:  06.Paul Paton (78).
Aberdeen Teamsheet
Brown, Logan, Considine, Taylor, Reynolds, McGinn, Hayes, Pawlett, Jack, Rooney, Goodwillie.

Unused Subs: Langfield, Murray, Gibbons, McKenna.

Bookings:  Pawlett (45).
Attendance: 11,196
Venue: Tannadice Park, Dundee
Referee: Crawford Allan
Next Match
St. Johnstone
28 Feb 2024 / 19:45 / Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen