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Aberdeen 3 - 0 Hibernian

HT Score: Aberdeen 2 - 0 Hibernian

Aberdeen scorers: Anderson 12, Whelan 13, Mackie 84 (Pen).

12/03/2005 | KO: 15:00

Three and easy as Dons leapfrog Hibs.

Aberdeen regained third place after losing the slot to Hibs at Christmas. This was the Dons first win over the Easter Road side this season and the emphatic 3-0 score line probably flattered the Dons although the victory was well deserved. Two goals in a minute from Anderson and Whelan put the Dons in the driving seat and the win was sealed with a late Darren Mackie penalty after Foster had been bundled over in the box.

Some neat play in the opening minute saw Aberdeen get in behind the visiting defence before Clark was flagged offside in a tight decision. A minute later Severin had the first effort at goal but it was from distance and well off target. Aberdeen were enjoying the bulk of the early possession but Hibs looked dangerous going forward and Shiels had their first shot at goal in the 9th minute when Aberdeen failed to clear their lines. A minute later Murray was given too much space and fired over from 8 yards when it looked easier to score. Hibs were starting to take control now and won the first corner of the match in the 11th minute.

A minute later Foster won the Dons first corner kick of the match and Aberdeen made the visitors pay as Anderson rose unchallenged to head Clark's delivery into the roof of the net. Within a minute the Hibs defence crumbled again when Foster was given too much space and Brown did well to block his shot. Mackie followed up and Brown made another terrific save as he touched the ball onto the bar but he could do nothing as Whelan followed up and headed home to double the Dons advantage. Hibs looked shaky now but dealt with crosses from Severin and Whelan before they almost pulled one back in the 20th minute.

O'Connor broke on the right and was only denied by a fine save from Esson who dived low to his right and palmed the effort clear. Foster almost added a third in the 24th minute when he was allowed to venture forward unchallenged and curled the ball on to the roof of the net from the edge of the box. Seconds later the visitors went even closer when Murray turned on a sixpence and drilled the ball inches wide of the target. McNaughton went on a penetrating run in the 33rd minute before winning a corner but Hibs were looking tighter at the back now although both teams looked capable of adding to the scoring. Hibs were hardly getting the rub of the green and were unlucky in the 43rd minute when O'Connor beat Esson with a curling shot only to watch it crash off the upright. A minute later a well timed tackle by Whittaker denied Clark at the other end.

Hibs threatened in the opening minute after winning a soft free kick when Glass delivered a dangerous ball that Esson managed to collect. A minute later Anderson was out quick to block an O'Connor effort as the visitors looked for a way back into the match. Severin collected the first yellow of the match in the 52nd minute for not returning the ball and Shiels was lucky to escape the same punishment after raising his hands for the second time in the match. Chances were being created at either end in what was proving to be an entertaining encounter. Konte replaced Riordan in the 59th minute and instantly won a corner despite appearing to borrow Russell Anderson's shirt in the process. A minute later Foster made a telling block when Brown looked ready to bury the ball.

Glass collected a yellow in the 63rd minute following an uncharacteristic lunge at McNaughton. Diamond steered the resultant free kick over the bar then a minute later Shiels again avoided a yellow after another rash challenge. In the 67th minute the same player won a free kick on the edge of the box but fortunately the wall held firm then Shiels got involved again catching McNaughton in a challenge that ended the Dundonian's match. McGuire replaced him and only the referee will be able to tell us why the Hibs man stayed out of his book by the time he was substituted in the 74th minute. Incredibly Whelan was booked a minute later for some gamesmanship.

Stewart replaced Whelan in the 76th minute and two minutes later Hibs won another free kick on the edge of the box seconds after Konte had again tried to swap shirts with Anderson. Esson made another brilliant save from a well struck Glass effort as the visitors continued to try and make the breakthrough. It was Aberdeen who sealed it however in the 84th minute when Foster was brought down by Gary Smith and Mackie sent Brown the wrong way to make it 3-0. Mackie set up Foster in the final minute but he was closed down and the keeper saved easily. It mattered little as the match had been won and the Dons had eased back into third spot.

Aberdeen Teamsheet
Esson, Hart, Byrne, McNaughton (McGuire 69), Anderson, Diamond, Foster, Severin, Whelan (Stewart 76), Mackie, Clark.

Unused Subs: Winter, Considine, Morrison, Ilic.

Bookings:  Severin (52),  Whelan (74).
Hibernian Teamsheet
Brown, Beuzelin (Glass 36), Caldwell, Brown, Murphy, Murray, O'Connor, Riordan (Konte 59), Shiels (Sproule 74), Smith, Whittaker. Unused Subs:

Bookings:  Glass 62
Attendance: 14,465
Venue: Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen
Referee: Kevin Toner, Gourock
Today's Match Programme.
Russell Anderson rises above everyone to head home the opener.
Whatever angle you look at it, it's going in.
Russell celebrates with his team mates after opening the scoring.
Noel Whelan reacts before Gary Smith to head the second a minute later.
Whelan celebrates with Severin and Mackie.
Diamond has to do some defending at Pittodrie this afternoon.
Richie Byrne is keeping an eye on the ball to prevent Hibs getting back into the match.
Scott Severin battles in midfield this afternoon.
Sponsors man of the match, Noel Whelan keeps the Hibs defence busy.
Kevin McNaughton has been in the wars after a challenge with Shiels.
Darren Mackie sends Brown the wrong way and strokes the penalty into the net.
The spot kick has sealed the win and Mackie is ready to celebrate.
Diamond keeps an eye on substitute Konte.