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Aberdeen 1 - 0 Falkirk

HT Score: Aberdeen 1 - 0 Falkirk

Aberdeen scorers: Smith 34.

18/02/2006 | KO: 15:00

Dons hang on to claim third straight win

Aberdeen made it three SPL wins in a row for the first time this season but this wasn't the sparkling performance of the previous two wins. After suffering a couple of early scares the Dons took the lead in the 34th minute through Jamie Smith. The second half was completely dominated by Falkirk and the Dons were clinging on at the end as they relied on some great saves from Langfield to collect all three points.

The visitor's kicked off but Aberdeen carved out the first chance in the opening minute when Lovell almost latched on to a through ball before being crowded out. Falkirk then had a chance in the third minute but Moutinho took a fresh air shot as he tried to latch on to a Gregg cross. Aberdeen then won the first corner of the match but it was cleared easily before Severin headed a free kick over the bar in the 5th minute. The Dons second corner in the 10th minute was well claimed by the keeper as Diamond challenged.

Two minutes later Falkirk had a great chance to open the scoring when McBreen escaped from Diamond and went one-on-one on Langfield before the keeper blocked the effort. Aberdeen were still enjoying good possession but were creating few chances at this stage as Falkirk closed down quickly. The visitor's then produced another great chance in the 20th minute when Langfield was at full stretch to turn a McBreen effort round the post. Two minutes later Snoyl set up Nicholson but he screwed his effort wide of the target.

The game then went through a scrappy stage before Aberdeen carved out a couple of half chances in the 32nd minute with teasing crosses from Snoyl and Smith. A minute later Lovell did well to work his way into the box but his cross beat everyone. Aberdeen's pressure paid off in the 34th minute when a Griffin cross bounced inside the Falkirk box and as the Dons players appealed for a penalty Smith kept his eye on the ball and fired it beyond Ferguson from eight yards out.

Four minutes later Clark stormed forward, spotted Ferguson off his line and chipped a decent effort just wide of the Falkirk goal. Andy Lawrie collected the first yellow card for unceremoniously dumping McNaughton in the 40th minute. McNaughton then collected a yellow for a late challenge on McBreen. In the closing minute of the half Langfield was again called into action as he saved from Lecsnel.

Falkirk were first to threaten in the second half after being awarded a controversial throw in. Anderson did well to clear but a minute later Moutinho was given too much space and fired inches over from distance. The visitor's continued to take the initiative and threatened with a corner kick in the 51st minute. Aberdeen then went close a minute later when a Severin throw in caused problems as Lovell controlled well and fed the ball across goal just eluding Nicholson. Snoyl looked to have broke free seconds later but was halted by a great sliding tackle.

Mackie then replaced Snoyl in the 54th minute but Falkirk continued to probe and Diamond was forced to make a double clearance inside the Dons penalty area. Then in the 58th minute Smith delivered a great cross that went inches over the head of Mackie in the middle of the goal area. A minute later Diamond made another terrific tackle inside the box as Gregg stormed through on goal. Foster replaced Lovell in the 65th minute as the Dons continued to soak up constant pressure.

Falkirk were awarded a corner in the 69th minute when Anderson had clearly kept the ball in play. The Dons were almost punished as Langfield came for the ball and completely missed it allowing McBreen to head wide of the target. Another corner followed two minutes later as Falkirk continued to pressurise Aberdeen. This time it required a Langfield save to keep the visitor's out. It was difficult to work out who was the home side at this stage as Falkirk were first to every ball. They went close again in the 75th minute when Moutinho got himself into a good position but failed to produce a finish.

Aberdeen were on the rack now and only another magnificent save by Langfield in the 78th minute prevented an equaliser. Aberdeen then instantly broke from the resulting corner but a controversial offside flag stopped the move. A deep free kick in the 86th minute was tipped over by Langfield and the resultant corner was flicked behind by Diamond as the Dons struggled to get out of their own half. MacFarlane then replaced Smith in the 87th minute. Clark relieved the pressure in the 89th minute when he won a corner that was headed well wide by Diamond.

A corner in the final minute was then punched clear by Langfield before the ball went out for a goal kick. The keeper then made a hash of the kick bringing the Falkirk forwards back on top of him. Seconds later Gow had a glimpse of goal before he was crowded out. After two minutes of injury time the final whistle eventually went much to the relief of the red army.

Match Stats:

Dons Falkirk
Goal Attempts 3 7
On Target 1 2
Corners 2 8
Possession 52% 48%

Aberdeen Teamsheet
Langfield, Griffin, McNaughton, Severin, Anderson, Diamond, Smith (MacFarlane 87), Nicholson, Lovell (Foster 70), Snoyl (Mackie 54), Clark.

Bookings:  McNaughton (44).
Falkirk Teamsheet
Ferguson, Lawrie, Gregg, Moutinho, Gow, Milne, McBreen, Lecsnel, Thomson, Rodrigues, Craig. Unused Subs: Barr for Rodrigues (46), Twaddle for Lecsnel (83)

Bookings:  Lawrie (40)
Attendance: 11,538
Venue: Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen
Referee: Eddie Smith, Hamilton
Today's match programme.
Barry Nicholson in action at Pittodrie.
Steve Lovell battles for the ball at Pittodrie.
Scott Severin challenges in today's match.
Jamie Smith in action against Falkirk.
Smith fires in the only goal of the match today.
Smith is mobbed by his team mates after scoring.
Kevin McNaughton surges forward this afternoon.
Zander Diamond in action this afternoon.
Russell ensures Falkirk don't grab a late equaliser.
Danny Griffin in action against Falkirk.
Jimmy Calderwood looks relieved at the final whistle.
Next Match
27 Apr 2024 / 15:00 / Pittodrie Stadium, Aberdeen