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AFC - Match Report
match report 2018-19 fixture list
Scottish Premiership 
09/03/2019
 
Celtic 0 - 0 Aberdeen
Kick Off:  3:00 PM          
Attendance: 59,123
Venue: Celtic Park, Glasgow
Dons Take First Parkhead Points off Celtic in

Despite a number of injury concerns, Aberdeen made just the one change for the visit to Celtic with James Wilson replacing Gary Mackay-Steven. Niall McGinn also missed out but Greg Stewart made the starting XI.

As they went snapping into tackles the Dons were less that happy with some early decisions that went against them, especially when Cosgrove was taken down when through on goal, but referee Craig Thomson was unmoved.

The game would go on to be very competitive throughout but the referee always had control of it.

In the fourth minute Celtic forced a corner down the left but Aberdeen were able to eventually hack it clear. Three minutes later a dangerous cross from Tierney evaded Henderson but Max Lowe had to concede a second corner which the Dons defended better this time. Celtic won a third corner on ten minutes which again Aberdeen dealt with after Celtic took it short and tried to pick out Ajer.

In the opening stages the Dons did have a few breaks forward but were a bit too careless with the final pass. Wilson though was seeing plenty of the ball on the left.

15 minutes in and although Celtic had plenty of possession in the Aberdeen half, the Dons defence had not been stretched. On 17 minutes Boyata tried to pick out the run of Burke but the Dons defence cut it out.

Celtic 0-0 Aberdeen SNS

On 23 minutes Cosgrove produced a neat flick to set Shinnie free. The skipper had space to run into but again the final pass let them down in a promising position. A minute later Aberdeen then produced their best passing move which resulted in Lowe swinging in a cross from deep. However Celtic then broke in numbers and the visitors were relieved to see the ball deflect off Considine and go behind for a corner. Henderson delivered a good set-piece but Boyata headed wide.

Brown then produced a forward pass looking for the run of Sinclair but Lewis was quickly off his line to make the save. Just before the half hour mark Kris Ajer cut inside and drilled a low shot towards goal and the ball just went past the post. The keeper might have got a finger tip to it, if he did it was a very good save, or it took a deflection, but it went behind anyway. On 36 minutes, James Forrest broke down the right and his pace kept him ahead of the defenders. Once he was in the box he put a ball across goal which looked neither a shot nor a cross and it drifted harmlessly wide.

Celtic appeared to be targeting the Dons right side, their left, and forced a number of corners but the Dons survived. On 40 minutes the first yellow card of the game as Boyata went into the back of Wilson after the striker did well to hold the ball in.

Celtic 0-0 Aberdeen SNS

After 43 minutes Tierney again caused problems down the left and his pass picked out Forrest. From about ten yards out he tried to side foot a shot towards goal but it was straight at Lewis. On the stroke of half time Celtic had the ball in the net when Ajer headed home a free kick but the flag went up straight away for offside.

Celtic at times enjoyed a bit too much possession in the first half but the Dons defence did very well to limit the chances.

Half time: Celtic 0 Aberdeen 0

Aberdeen made a change at half time with Dean Campbell replacing James Wilson. It proved to be a very good tactical switch as it led to a much improved second half performance. Celtic meanwhile made a double change at the break with Michael Johnston and Odsonne Edouard replacing Sinclair and Henderson.

Aberdeen started the second half really well.

A minute after the restart they produced a good move when Stewart shifted the ball to the left but the cross from McLennan was just too strong for the head of Cosgrove inside the area. On 48 minutes a real opening for McLennan after a brilliant through ball by Shinnie. The striker had space inside the area but tried to step inside Boyata who was able to put a foot in. The Dons kept the move alive but Stewart?s chipped cross to the back post was chested back to Bain.

Still Aberdeen looked a threat on the break. Connor McLennan again got in behind the defence but was unable to work an opening.

Then a few minutes later, after some more excellent pressing, Greg Stewart and Dom Ball combined well which resulted in Ball hitting a low shot which was saved by Bain at his near post with his feet.

On 58 minutes, with the Dons well on top, all the good work was nearly undone when Edouard twisted and turned inside the area and Lewis was forced to make a very smart stop at his front post before Ball eventually scrambled the ball behind for a corner.

An hour in, this was still anyone?s game. Aberdeen were enjoying a lot more of the possession and were protecting the ball well.

On 63 minutes a poor kick out by Bain went straight to Shinnie. He played a one two with Stewart and managed to get a right footed shot away but it was blocked behind for a rare Aberdeen corner. Although the set piece was cleared, again the Dons enjoyed some good possession in the Celtic half. The ball was worked to Shinnie who this time on his stronger left side sent in a much more dangerous shot which was again deflected and just looped over the bar. From the corner Brown went to ground and Craig Thomson blew of a foul which relived the pressure.

The midfield three of Shinnie, Ferguson and Campbell were playing really well and getting the better of the midfield battle. Young Dean had another superb outing at this venue.

Celtic 0-0 Aberdeen SNS

65 minutes in, Celtic then enjoyed their first real spell of pressure in the second half and were camped in and around the Dons box. They put over a number of crosses but Aberdeen again defended their box brilliantly. Johnston floated over a cross to the back post which was just out of the reach of Burke and then Bitton?s shot was blocked.

The defence looked so well organised this afternoon.

With fifteen minutes to go McLennan had a shot blocked and then Edourard had the same at the other end. It was end to end stuff. Then Cosgrove did brilliantly on the right hand side of the box and put over a dangerous low cross which so nearly found McLennan coming in at the back post. From the corner Ferguson actually had a good shooting opportunity but miscued his shot.

With 12 minutes to go Celtic made a final change with Weah replacing Burke. Then Bitton tried to play in Forrest but Lewis was alert to the danger and managed to get off his line to make the save. On 84 minutes another promising break for Aberdeen. Stewart had support but decided to try and an early shot and the ball drifted harmlessly behind. On 85 minutes Celtic won anther corner but Lewis, coming a long way off his line, took a great catch.

Celtic 0-0 Aberdeen SNS

With four minutes to go a major let off for the Dons when Johnston beat Ball but his shot went right across the face of goal. Then Johnston had another opportunity when he curled a shot just past the far post.

With two minutes to go Stevie May replaced Greg Stewart.

In the final acts of the game it was the Dons who almost won it. On 89 minutes Bain was forced to make a save from a Ferguson free kick. A few seconds later a deep cross was knocked down by Cosgrove and May had a great chance but was unable to direct his header goalward.

The Dons then saw out the three minutes of injury time comfortably with Ethan Ross replacing Connor McLennan for the final stages. A very well deserved point and a real confidence boost ahead of Tuesday night.

Full time: Celtic 0-0 Aberdeen

Celtic Teamsheet:  29.Bain, 02.Toljan, 20.Boyata, 35.Ajer, 63.Tierney, 06.Bitton, 08.Brown, 49.Forrest, 52.Henderson (22.Edouard 46), 11.Sinclair (73.Johnston 46), 25.Burke (30.Weah 78).

Unused Subs: 04.Hendry, 15.Hayes, 23.Lustig, 24.de Vries.

Bookings:  Boyata (41)

Aberdeen Teamsheet:  Lewis, Ball, Considine, McKenna, Lowe, Stewart (May 88), Ferguson, Shinnie, McLennan (Ross 90), Cosgrove, Wilson (Campbell 46).

Unused Subs: Gleeson, Halford, Devlin, Craddock.

Bookings:  Stewart (75).

Referee: Craig Thomson

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