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Livingston 2 - 1 Aberdeen

HT Score: Livingston 2 - 0 Aberdeen

Scottish Premiership
Livingston scorers: Fitzwater 7, Kelly 17, Holt 45
Aberdeen scorers: Lopes 58 (Pen).

08/11/2022 | KO: 19:45

Dons pay the penalty for missed chances

A sluggish start to the game cost the Dons dear, Livi scoring twice in their period of dominance, Aberdeen finding just the one goal from the following 70 minutes of almost one way traffic.

There was just the one change from Jim Goodwin to the Aberdeen side that beat Hibs 4-1 on Friday night, Jack MacKenzie coming into the side in place of Hayden Coulson who started on the bench. Dylan Lobban and Alfie Bavidge joined him there, replacing Ryan Duncan and Jack Milne.

After their 3-2 win at Kilmarnock there were two changes for Livingston with Stephen Kelly and Jackson Longridge starting from the bench. They were replaced by Jason Holt and Cristian Montano.

Livi had an early chance, Bojan Miovskji misplacing a pass, the home side moving the ball to Bahamboula who flashed a shot over the bar from 20 yards out.

They were in front from a corner on six minutes. Kelly played it in low, the ball bobbling around off a couple of deflections, nobody able to clear before it sat up for Fitzwater. He thumped in a low shot from a dozen yards out and Kelle Roos could only help the ball into the net at the foot of his post. A quick VAR check ensued, but the goal stood.

Fitzwater and Miovski collided on halfway a couple of minutes later, both needing treatment from the respective physios before continuing. Ross McCrorie was then in the book for impeding Nouble in the 11th minute as they chased a ball over the top.

From the free-kick, Obileye bent the ball around the wall, Roos going full stretch to his left to tip the ball around the post, a fine save. Kelly's corner found the head of Fitzwater and his header looked goal bound before it took a deflection off Liam Scales to go behind. Two more corners followed before a nervy Dons defence cleared their lines. That finally got Duk on the run before Devlin removed his legs from beneath him to go in the book.

Aberdeen didn't get to take the free-kick because we then had a VAR delay, eventually going back up the other end to give a penalty to Livi after a clearance at the corner had struck Connor Barron on the hand as he raised it to protect his face. Sean Kelly stepped up and smacked it straight down the middle as Roos dived to his left. Devlin's booking stood, from a passage of play that had been ruled null and void by VAR - the Livi skipper was clearly not amused as he discussed the philosophical conundrum with the referee.

Duk was on the chase again on 21, following an Anthony Stewart long ball out. Brave, he got to the ball just ahead of George on the edge of the box. His poked shot at goal went beyond the goalkeeper, but just beyond the post too. Route one was already looking the best option on the wet plastic pitch.

Aberdeen were almost back in it on the half hour. A great diagonal from Barron found MacKenzie by the corner flag. He produced a fine cross to Miovski and his header was going to squeeze under the bar until George produced a very good save to push the ball over the bar.

George was at it again two minutes later. The sane diagonal from Baron let MacKenzie get the ball in the box. He followed it in to collect a loose ball from the knockdown and drilled it into the near post, George making a sprawling save onto the post. Much better at last from Aberdeen.

Duk was set free again by Miovski on 35. Duk got a touch on it before Obileye came across and barged into him, making no effort to play the football. VAR checked and told the referee there was no need to go to the monitor.

Livi then won themselves three corners in quick succession as they bombarded the Aberdeen box, the Dons defence looking uncertain on each, that passage of play ending with Stewart almost putting the ball into his own net after 39 minutes, Roos picking up the pieces.

Aberdeen countered and had Livi pinned in their own box, but the ball wouldn't sit for Duk, then for Jayden Richardson, then for Miovski who jabbed an effort wide.

On the brink of the break, a cross from Richardson found Clarkson 16 yards out. A controlled volley looped over George but thudded against the bar. Miovski was up to the rebound but his header was clutched by George. VAR then suggested that Clarkson's volley took a deflection off Holt's hand, causing the referee to look at his monitor. It was identical to the Barron handball, penalty given, Holt booked.

Miovski stepped up, but George wasn't for beating, going to his left and making a good save, the rebound coming to Miovski whose header was not strong enough, George falling gratefully onto it.


McCrorie was replaced by Matty Kennedy at the break as the Dons went to a back four.

It was a decent opening to the half from the visitors, pressing Livi back into their own half but without fashioning a clear opening. The first real one fell Miovski's way on 53 minutes, up to get his head on a cross from Kennedy on the right, but he was underneath the ball and ballooned it onto the roof of the net.

A MacKenzie cross came into the box on 55, Fitzwater's outstretched arm touched the ball. The referee apparently saw nothing and play continued for a minute or so before the referee got a message, and headed off to the screen. Another penalty was the result, but no card for Fitzwater. Duk took the responsibility this time, smashing the ball low and hard. George got a hand to it but there was no stopping that one. 2-1, game on.

George got both hands to a Scales header on the hour, Aberdeen a very different proposition from the way they'd played in the first 20 minutes. Livi responded, removing Bahamboula and Holt for Shinnie and Omeonga.

Duk was a fraction away from squaring it up on 63, getting up to a Kennedy cross into the near post, directing his header just past the post. George went down injured in the midst of it all and required treatment before carrying on, albeit limping heavily. Ramadani was then booked for a foul on Nouble after 65 minutes.

There was a quick counter-attack moments later, Duk putting the foot on the gas and accelerating into space, feeding Clarkson, but his cross was too deep as he lost his footing as he played the ball.

It was Duk again on 68, a Kennedy cross dropping to him seven yards out. He smacked the ball goalwards, Obileye producing a brilliant clearance to somehow hook the ball off the line at full stretch.

With the rain pouring down, Livi looked to stem the red tide with another double substitution on 72 minutes, Goncalves and Penrice replacing Montano and Anderson. Aberdeen shook things up too, Hayden Coulson and Vicente Besuijen on for MacKenzie and Clarkson. Besuijen was in the thick of it straight away, a shot from 20 yards hitting Obileye and creeping just wide.

Pittman was next calling for treatment after clashing with Barron on halfway, the home side delighted to get a break. Barron was yellow carded for his part in a simple coming together.

Duk was on the charge yet again on 80 minutes, getting away from Penrice who, inside the box, simply came across him and pushed him over. It looked a clear and obvious foul, but nothing was given. It was wave after wave of Aberdeen attack now, but Livi were just about clinging on to the lead. Two minutes later, Fitzwater was booked for bundling Duk over off the ball - making an identical challenge to Penrice's two minutes earlier, but on halfway.

The Dons brought on Christian Ramirez for Stewart on 83 as they chased the equaliser. Pittman was replaced by Boyes two minutes later.

Duk should have levelled it up on 87 minutes. A lovely through ball from Ramirez had Duk inside the box, away from the defender, but from around the penalty spot with just George to beat, he got under his shot and stabbed the ball over the bar.

Marley Watkins replaced Richardson in the last throw of the dice for the Dons.

As the board went up to show six minutes of added time, George went in the book for time wasting. A throw to the near post from Coulson found Miovski, but stretching, he couldn't get enough on the ball and simply poked it wide. And that was that.

Livingston Teamsheet
George, Devlin, Fitzwater, Montano (v 72), Kelly, Holt (Omeonga 61), Bahamboula (Shinnie 61), Pittman (Longridge 85), Nouble, Anderson (Concalves 72)

Unused substitutes: Konovalov, Boyes, St Kelly

Bookings:  Devlin 14,   Holt 45,   Penrice 82,   George 91
Aberdeen Teamsheet
Roos, McCrorie (Kennedy 46), MacKenzie (Coulson 71), Scales, Stewart (Ramirez 83), Barron, Miovski, Lopes, Ramadani, Clarkson (Besuijen 72), Richardson (Watkins 93).

Unused Subs: Lewis, Morris, Bavidge, Lobban.

Bookings:  McCrorie (11),  Ramadani (65),  Barron (76).
Attendance: 2,598
Venue: Almondvale Stadium, Livingston
Referee: Nick Walsh
Next Match
East Kilbride
20 Jul 2024 / 15:00 / K-Park Training Academy, East Kilbride