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AFC - Match Report
match report 2011-12 fixture list
Hibernian 0 - 0 Aberdeen
Kick Off:  3:00 PM          
Attendance: 8,972
Venue: Easter Road, Edinburgh
Stalemate at Easter Road

This was certainly not a classic. The Dons struggled in the first half to get much going in an attacking sense, although Richard Foster, playing in a left midfield position went close on two occasions and had a free kick deflected just over.  After the break the Dons got bodies forward to support Vernon and looked far more dangerous. They had a number of good chances. The best of which fell to substitute Pawlett when the keeper was off his line but his 30 yard drive was deflected past. Magennis had an opening in the final few minutes but the keeper saved and the Dons had to settle for a point.

Isaac The Dons lined up with Gonzalez in goal, Considine left back, Arnason and Mawene in the centre and Rory McArdle at right back. In midfield Foster was pushed forward to wide left, Clark was wide right with Milsom and Osbourne in the middle. Vernon was up front with Fyvie playing just in behind him.

Isaiah Osbourne lined up for the HIbs side in midfield directly opposite Isaac.

Hibs have a made a poor start the season, highlighted by the number of empty seats in the stands and the Dons were keen to exploit this early on. The visitors were straight out of the blocks and Foster's run down the left brought an early corner. The ball was swung in and at the back post Mawene won the header. The ball fell to Arnason but he was unable to make decent contact. The Dons then forced two more corners and the home defence, who have conceded a lot of goals this season, looked anything but confident. Then on three minutes Vernon got the wrong side of his man and was taken down in the box. The Dons appealed for a penalty. They certainly had a strong claim. Although it was not given it was encouraging to see the ease at which Vernon had turned his man.

After about 15 minutes the home side bagan to come into the game. They won a corner but it was well taken by Gonzalez. Then a looping header almost caused concern. Conditions were very blustery so it an afternoon where both keepers had to be careful. On 20 minutes Arnason and Gonzalez almost got themselves in a mess at the back. Gonzelez called for it but was unable to hold on. Thankfully the ball fell safe. Other than that the keeper looked secure throughout and had a good game.

Although they had started the game well Aberdeen were making heavy weather of this. Garry O'Connor was then through with a site at goal. Gonzalez had his angles worked out well and blocked, gathering at the second attempt. Seconds later O'Connor then had a better chance when set up by Sproule on the right but the former Scotland striker completely miskicked. Lucky for the Dons he did. Aberdeen broke forward and Foster picked up on the left. He cut inside and curled a shot inches over. Although he had options inside he was quite entitled to go for goal. Could easily have been a goal at either end.

Compared with previous games between the two sides at Easter Road, this was a far cagier affair. Aberdeen, like the first half at Ibrox, were struggling to get bodies forward to support Vernon but they did finish the half on top.

On 40 minutes a better passing move. Considine played it along the line to Foster who crossed for Vernon. The striker got a shot away but it was blocked and the ball went behind for a corner. Then on 42 minutes a long throw by Arnason caused mayhem at in the Hibs defence. The ball broke to Foster and his stabbed left footed shot went inches past. Again the captain was very unlucky as the keeper did not see the ball coming through a ruck of players.

Then in the final minute the best chance of the half for the Dons. Vernon laid it off and finally someone was in support. Foster burst onto it and he was through. The Dons had a two on one with Milsom to Foster's right. The skipper chose to go himself and was taken down by Sean O'Hanlon on the edge of the box. It looked a very close decision as to weather he was the last man or not. The full back might just have been getting back. It was certainly a clear goalscoring opportunity but O'Hanlon was just booked. The free kick was taken by Foster but the ball was deflected just past. It could have gone anywhere. The corner was completely missed by Stack in the Hibs goal. The ball rebounded off Arnason who was standing just behind him. The ball went to safety but it could have easily have bounced the other way into the net. Fraser

The second half started like the first with the Dons winning a corner in the first minute, the ball was eventually cleared though from the danger area.

On 50 minutes Martin Scott hit a shot from distance which was well saved in the end by Gonzalez. The keeper watched it all way before diving high to his right. Another long throw from Arnason caused problems in the Hibs box but again the ball would just not fall kindly to a red shirt. The Dons are just needing a little break in front of goal.

First tactical change of the afternoon. Chris Clark was replaced by Josh Magennis. Josh went upfront alongside Vernon and Fraser Fyvie went to a wide right position. Shortly after that a double change for Hibs. Murray was replaced by Booth and Agogo was replaced by on loan signing Lee Griffiths. And both subs were involved in the action straight away. Booth hit a shot from the edge of the box which was well dealt with by Gonzalez. The ball took a horrible bounce in front of him but he managed to spoon it behind for a corner. From the resulting corner Griffiths picked the ball up on the left and he played in an excellent ball. His cross was missed by O'Connor and Sproule coming in at the back post blasted over. A real let off for the Dons.

70 minutes gone and another penalty claim for the Dons. The keeper took down Josh inside the box but probably got just enough of the ball to save him. A minute later Sproule was booked for a foul on Considine. A sign of his frustration. Andrew had handled him very well. Peter Pawlett was then given the final 20 minutes or so to show what he could do. He replaced Fyvie in a direct swap. Two minutes later he very nearly scored. A through ball by Magennis almost found Vernon but the keeper intercepted. As he was close to being outside his box he took no chances and headed it clear - even although the ball was along the ground.His poor clearance fell to Pawlett, who steadied himself and from about 30 yards out his shot looked goalbound but was just cleared on the line by O'Hanlon. So close.

Richard Aberdeen were at this stage well on top but not getting any help from the near side linesman.Foster then put Vernon through and this time he was onside. He crossed the ball across the face of goal just out of the reach of Magennis. Considine was coming in at the back post and a better option might have been to stand the ball up for him.

Osbourne then barged his way forward into the box. Pawett picked the ball up on the right but his cross again found no takers. So frustrating. In the final 10 minutes the game became really stretched as both teams went looking for a win. Hanlon headed just over after the ball was played in from a corner. On 81 minutes Mackie replaced Vernon. On 83 minutes Osbourne was booked for lounge. This gave Hibs a free kick in dangerous place. The ball was headed behind for a corner and then the defence cleared. Mawene and Arnason both had good games and with McArdle and Considine as full back there was plenty of height in the Dons back four.

The Dons look far more dangerous in the closing stages. Arnason cross for Magennis but he was just stretching too much. Then with the clock ticking away Magennis had an opening in front of goal. His shot was parried and Foster following up was ruled offside. Josh might have been better to play Richard in.

Both teams then had late free kicks which allowed them to get players into the box but both were well defended, which about summed up the afternoon.

Hibernian Teamsheet:  Graham Stack, Richie Towell, Sean O'Hanlon, Paul Hanlon, Ian Murray (Callum Booth 63), Ivan Sproule (Akpo Sodje 87), Victor Palsson, Isaiah Osbourne, Martin Scott, Garry O'Connor, Junior Agogo (Leigh Griffiths 63).

Unused Subs: Mark Brown, David Wotherspoon, Daniel Galbraith, David Stephens.

Bookings:  Sean O'Hanlon 45,   Ivan Sproule 70,   Isaiah Osbourne 84,   Victor Palsson 90.

Aberdeen Teamsheet:  Gonzalez, McArdle, Mawéné, Considine, Foster, Clark (Magennis 58), Arnason, Fyvie (Pawlett 71), Osbourne, Milsom, Vernon (Mackie 82).

Unused Subs: Brown, Megginson, Chalali, Folly.

Bookings:  Osbourne (90).

Referee: Steve O'Reilly

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