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Aberdeen 1 - 1 Rangers

HT Score: Aberdeen 1 - 0 Rangers

SPFL Development League
Aberdeen scorers: Ross.
Rangers scorers: Bouzaig 56

20/09/2016 | KO: 18:00

Young Dons Held at Home

It was a more familiar looking Under 20s side which took to the field against Rangers in Peterhead this evening as the Dons looked to build on last week's win at Falkirk. The team lined up with Craddock in goal behind a back four of Omolokun, Morris, McKenna and Wells. The midfield trio of Norris, Thomas and Ross supported a front three of Wright, McLennan and Robertson.

A sunny evening with a brisk southerly wind greeted the teams as they kicked off in front of a healthy crowd. Aberdeen had the wind advantage in the first period and started on the front foot. Bruce Anderson looked sharp and was unlucky to be closed down after nicking the ball in midfield. The pace of McLennan was a threat but when he broke down the left he couldn't find a red shirt in the box. Rangers appealed strongly for a penalty after a challenge by Omolokun on Ashmore as they went for a Ross McCrorie cross but it was a great tackle from Kesi and the referee correctly waved play on.
Scott McKenna was forced off through injury after only 9 minutes with Sam Roscoe coming on. Aberdeen took the lead after 12 minutes after a blunder by Rangers keeper McCrorie. His attempted pass forward was picked up by Scott Wright who fed the ball inside for Frank Ross to drive a low left footed shot into the net from 20 yards. McCrorie's desire to play football from the back was admirable but on occasion his inability to find a team mate was putting the visiting defence under unnecessary pressure. Fine play by McLennan saw him win the ball in midfield then drive forward for a shot which forced a diving save from the Rangers keeper.
The visitors were rarely seen as an attacking force but they did break forward on the half hour mark but Jeffries' shot lacked the pace or the accuracy to worry Craddock. The game was becoming a bit scrappy with neither side able to maintain possession for any sustained periods although the Dons always looked dangerous going forward. All they were lacking was a decisive final ball. Half time arrived with the Dons deservedly ahead by 1-0. Rangers looked lacklustre in attack and David Craddock didn't have a serious save to make in the opening 45. Aberdeen were the dominant side but will have felt they needed at least one more goal to put the game to bed.

Rangers were first to threaten in the second half but the shot from Barjonas produced a comfortable save from Craddock. The young Gers forced their first corner in 56 minutes and it produced an equaliser. The flag kick from Lyon was flicked on for Bouzaig to glance a header over Craddock and into the net. Shortly afterwards the visitors brought on Gibson for Mouanda. Good play from the Dons created an opening for Frank Ross on 62 minutes but McCrorie made a solid save from his curling effort.
The pace of the match had really picked up and both sides were playing some good football without creating clear openings. Joe Nuttall was introduced to the fray as the game entered its final quarter replacing Bruce Anderson who had as ever given his all for the cause. The new boy was quickly into his stride forcing a fine block from keeper McCrorie after some fine passing by the Dons. And McCrorie had to be sharp again seconds later to keep out Frank Ross. A good through ball set Bouzaig free but as he raced in on goal Callum Morris showed all his experience to snuff out the danger.
Rangers were enjoying a good spell and Barjonas again had a shooting opportunity but he dragged his shot wide of the target. Ibrox coach Graham Murty made a double change on 81 minutes bringing on Dallas and Jamieson for Barjonas and Bouzaig. Shortly after Nuttall had fired over from Scott Wright's pass Chris Antoniazzi came on for Connor McLennan. Both sides pressed hard for a winner but time ran out on them. The young Dons will feel they maybe should have made more of some promising attacking situations in the second goal and will be frustrated with the soft goal they gave away.
Aberdeen Teamsheet
Craddock, Omolokun, Wells, Thomas, McKenna (Roscoe 10), Morris, Wright, Anderson (Nuttall 66), McLennan (Antoniazzi 88), Ross, Norris.

Unused Subs: Mair, Dangana, Robertson.
Rangers Teamsheet
Robby McCrorie, Ross McCrorie, Sinnamon, Mouanda, Bates, Bradley, Jeffries, Barjonas, Bouzaig, Ashmore, Lyon. Subs - Wright (GK), White, Wilson, Gibson, Dallas, Jamieson, Beerman
Venue: Balmoor Stadium, Peterhead