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AFC - Match Report
match report 1937-38 fixture list
Div 1 (Old) 
Aberdeen 1 - 2 Falkirk
Kick Off:  6:30 PM   Lang 33.       Huskie 6, Keyes 21  
Attendance: 12,000
Venue: Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen

Aberdeen suffered their second home defeat of the season at the hands of Falkirk at Pittodrie last night, but it must be admitted that the Dons were a trifle unlucky. For the greater part of the game they played with practically ten men.
Dunlop, who was tried at inside-right, received a severe leg injury six minutes after the start and was little more than a passenger for the remainder of the game.
All the scoring was done in the first half, but after the interval the Dons pressed strongly in an effort to secure the equaliser. During this period the game savoured more of a cup-tie than of a League game.
The home team launched attack after attack, but the Falkirk defence succeeded in holding their lead.
While the Dons did not enjoy the best of luck, the fault that they did not share the points lay with themselves. Over-eagerness in attack was the cause of their failure. With little more steadiness at close quarters they would have at least drawn.
The Aberdeen defence was well tested by a fast-moving Falkirk attack, and they were not always impressive under pressure. No fault could be found with Johnstone in goal, and Cooper at right back was steady and gave Dawson little scope.
Temple, on the other flank, kept McKerrell fairly quiet, but again his kicking was inclined to be erratic when he was harassed.


Fraser was the outstanding half-back, combining strong defensive work with fine forcing play in attack. Thomson was more effective than in recent games, but is still short of his best form.
Falloon played a plucky game at centre-half, but met his match in Keyes, whose quick darts to either wing often left the Irishman in two minds.
After Dunlop was injured he changed places with Scott, and during the first period the reserve centre was quite lively at inside right and caused the Falkirk defence some uneasiness. Armstrong suffered from lack of support, but even when he did get the ball was inclined to hang on too long.
Lang, on the left, was smart and caused the Falkirk defence a good deal of trouble, but Devine, at inside left, was slow and seldom parted with the ball to advantage. He was the weakest link in attack, apart, of course, from Dunlop.
Falkirk's defence did not play polished football, but their first-time tackling and kicking was effective. Peat was the better back, while in a strong half line, Bolt and Shankley were always prominent.
Keyes was a fast and dangerous leader, but he would have scored more than one goal had he not made the mistake of cutting out to the right and narrowing the angle when in good position. Huskie was a clever inside forward, and Dawson on the left required careful watching.
McKie was early in action. He knocked down a Fraser free kick, and when Armstrong went for the ball he just managed to scramble it clear.


Falkirk were a sprightly lot and in six minutes they took the lead. McKerrell sent over a beauty from a corner kick, and Huskie neatly flicked the ball into the net past Johnstone.
McKerrell and Keyes gave the home defence an anxious time. The winger deftly tricked Temple, and the centre, eluding Falloon, had to veer out to the right, with the result that his shot struck the side net.
Falkirk were giving as much as they got, and in the twenty-first minute they went further ahead. When a hard McPherson lob was topped by Falloon, Keyes caught the rebound to flash the ball past Johnstone.
Dunlop's injury was troubling him and he had to retire.
Keyes had a clever run on his own, and Johnstone had to go full length to stop his drive.
Dunlop returned after six minutes absence and again went to the wing berth.
McKerrell had a chance to put the "Bairns" further ahead, but he kicked first time instead sof teadying himself.
McKie was twice in action, once from a Lang corner and again from Armstrong, and in the next Falkirk raid Temple was hurt. He was only off for about a minute.


The thirty-third minute saw the Dons reduce the deficit. Armstrong, well in his own half, set the machinery in motion with a pass to Fraser. From the right-half Scott gained possession, and with Lang carried the ball upfield. Lang was left in possession with clear view of the goal, and although he hesitated, he sent the ball past McKie.
McKie was again in action, this time from a Dunlop corner. Lang got his head to the ball, the keeper bringing off a fine save.
When play was resumed, Scott took over the leadership of the Dons' attack, while Armstrong went to the inside-right berth.
Aberdeen were putting all they knew into the attack in an effort to draw level, and McKie had to look lively to stop a Thomson lob.
After about twelve minutes the Dons again re-arranged their attack, Armstrong and Scott changing positions.
When Cooper conceded a free-kick in the Bairns' half, the Dons' defence was put in a quandary. Without hesitation McPherson sent the ball upfield, and with Cooper out of position. Dawson got away on the left to give to Keyes. The centre's parting shot was only inches wide of the mark.
A great chance was lost when, from a Lang cross, Devine headed over from good position.


Aberdeen were unlucky not to draw level after about half an hour's play. It was the most thrilling moment of the match.
After an Armstrong shot had been blocked by Nisbet. Lang gained possession and his shot was blocked by McKie. He failed to stop it, however, and the ball rolled along the line out of harm's way.
The Dons appealed strongly for a goal, and the referee consulted a linesman before deciding "no goal."
Kenny Dawson had a great try when he turned in a flash and shot hard for goal. The ball struck the upright and went behind.
Aberdeen were determined and in their next attack Devine, from a Lang pass, sent the ball crashing against the crossbar. Armstrong caught the rebound, but his header went past.


There was a remarkable escape in the Aberdeen goalmouth. A hefty clearance by Peat let Keyes away. With Johnstone out of his goal the centre raced with Cooper to get the ball which was going towards an empty goal. Just under the bar Keyes gained possession and wildly sent just over the bar. It was a narrow escape.

Source: Press & Journal, 16th September 1937

Aberdeen Teamsheet:  Johnstone, Cooper, Temple, Fraser, Falloon, Thomson, Scott, Dunlop, Armstrong, Devine, Lang.

Unused Subs:


Falkirk Teamsheet:  McKie; Nisbet, Peat: Bolt, Shankly, McPherson; McKerrell, Sharp, Keyes, Huskie, Dawson


Referee: W. McCulloch, Glasgow

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