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Aberdeen 2 - 1 Feyenoord

HT Score: Aberdeen 1 - 1 Feyenoord

UEFA Cup Second Round First Leg
Aberdeen scorers: Falconer 33, Miller 67.
Feyenoord scorers: Elstrup 23 (pen)

21/10/1987 | KO: 19:30

Dons fight back against Dutch muscle

Aberdeen came from behind to beat ten men Feyenoord tonight, as the Dutch got physical. The Dons dominated the opening twenty minutes then were hit on the break when Leighton upended ex Rangers forward Dave Mitchell and Elstrup dispatched the spot kick. The Dons levelled through Falconer then grabbed a precious winner to take to Rotterdam in two weeks when young Joe Miller scored in the 67th minute.

Pre match conditions were poor with heavy rainfall in the Aberdeen area. Feyenoord came to defend and Dons manager Porterfield decided to throw his young strikers into the fray with Joe Miller, John Hewitt and Willie Falconer all starting. Aberdeen started well and in the opening minutes Bett was felled as he made a probing run. This was to set the tone for the evening as the Dutch opted to employ some brutal tactics. The resulting free kick was cleared for the first corner of the match and Willie Miller went close with an effort from the edge of the box.

Aberdeen continued to dominate and a penetrating run from Hewitt ended with the striker testing the keeper with a low drive. The same player then fired inches over the bar from sixteen yards before Peter Weir went on a maisy run before firing in a fierce shot that was beaten away by the Dutch keeper. Disaster then struck in the 23rd minute when Feyenoord made a rare foray forward. Ex Ranger, Dave Mitchell beat the offside trap and ran in on goal only to be upended by Jim Leighton. The referee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot and Elstrup stepped up to send Leighton the wrong way and draw first blood for the visitors.

The Dutch continued the rough treatment with a series of shocking challenges, which in turn produced several yellow cards although the referee was inconsistent in his punishment. One of these rash challenges produced a free kick in the 33rd minute when Hewitt was completely taken out of the play. Weir delivered a sublime ball into the six yard box and Falconer connected with a diving header into the corner of the net as Pittodrie erupted. On the stroke of halftime Aberdeen were awarded another free kick but Jim Bett sent his effort well over the bar.

Aberdeen continued their dominance after the break and an early Weir corner saw Hewitt send a looping header over the bar. Referee Fredriksson had seen enough of the brutality from Feyenoord and produced a straight red card for Wijnstekers for a challenge that was no worse than anything that preceded it. The subsequent free kick produced another chance for the Dons but the effort scraped past the post before a rare attack from the Dutchman had Elstrup firing over although Leighton looked to have it covered.

Hewitt should have scored minutes later but failed to make a decent connection allowing the keeper to save. Aberdeen finally broke the ten men down in the 67th minute when a Bett cross found Joe Miller and the youngster netted from close range after his first effort was blocked by the keeper. Falconer should have added a third but drilled his effort wide of the post with only the keeper to beat. A late flurry in the closing minutes failed to find a third and after the match manager Porterfield was scathing of the match official.

"He was a big disappointment. I have never seen so many fouls given in a game. There is a lot of talk about Dutch football being some of the best around. However, some of our players were almost assaulted out there. I asked him a few questions at half time and he said it was because of the conditions. I can't accept that, we were treated poorly.

"The decision to play a 4-3-3 formation was the right one and it was a good display. We asked a lot from Peter Weir as he had been out for so long, but you could see how the Dutch reacted to his inclusion with usually three players around him. We lost a bad goal but we had the resolve to come back from that and win the game. Really we should have had more than two goals to show for our efforts. On another night we could have won with a bit to spare, although it will be a bit of a casualty department tomorrow and I hope that all the players will be ok for the Skol Cup Final."

Aberdeen Teamsheet
Leighton, McKimmie, Falconer, Connor, McLeish, Miller, Hewitt, Bett, Miller, Nicholas, Weir.

Unused Subs: Grant, Beckett, Irvine, Porteous, Hackett.

Bookings:  McKimmie (71).
Feyenoord Teamsheet
Hiele, Heus, Troost, Van Herpen, Wijnstekers!, Molenaar, Hofman, Elstrup, Mitchell (Barendse 28(Monkou 48)), Been, Hoekstra

Bookings:  Molenaar 34  Wijnstekers 48
Attendance: 16,000
Venue: Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen
Referee: Erik Fredericksson, Sweden
Next Match
27 Jul 2024 / 15:00 / Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen