Keen interest was taken in the match played at Pittodrie, the visiting team being St Mirren, which had defeated Aberdeen at Paisley on the previous Saturday by 4 goals to 2. The Aberdonians were determined to avenge the Paisley defeat, and the result was a fast, well-contested game. A crowd of about 6000 spectators witnessed the play, which ended in a victory for Aberdeen, who scored the only goal of the match. The teams were:-
Aberdeen: Macfarlane; Murray, gault; Halkett, Strang, Low; Robertson, Edgar, ward, McAulay, Lennie.
St Mirren: Rae; Jackson, Crawford; Greenlees, Robertson, McAvoy; R. Wright, Wyllie, McPherson, Hall, Anderson.
Referee - Mr. Riddell, Edinburgh.
Aberdeen started confidently, and were soon in the vicinity of the west goal. For the first fifteen minutes the Aberdeen half-backs and forwards pleaded delightfully crisp, clever, short passing game, Low, Mcaulay, and Lennie working like a machine, while Strang's strong tackling and bustling play and Halkett's brainy work enabled the forwards to dash in Rae's direction with a frequency which was not at all to the liking of Messrs Jackson and Crawford, who were always kept on the move. The St Mirren backs were a rare pair, and soon steadied up the players in front of them, who took some time to settle down. Rae had to handle in the first minute, a low shot from Halkett's foot having to be smartly picked up and thrown out as Ward dashed in on the goalkeeper in a determined manner. Lennie, who occasionally outwitted Jackson, sent the ball across of the St Mirren goalmouth. Ward stopped the ball, but lingered too long ere he shot, with the result that the ball was nipped from his toes. For a time McAulay was in rare form, and he drew out the defence, and made openings for Lennie and Ward in his best style. St Mirren, whose footwork was not so smart as that of the ground team, played their usual bustling, long-passing game, the rushes of their forwards and clean kicking by the backs and half-backs proving quite as effective as the more fancy movements of the Aberdeen players. Wright and Anderson the extreme wingers, were difficult to hold, and on one occasion Wright ran passed both Murray and Gault, and shot into Macfarlane's hands. A stunning piece of play brought Macfarlane's resource, daring, and skill prominently before the spectators. McPherson came dashing down the field, with Gault and Murray chasing him yards behind. Macfarlane judged the situation to a nicety, darted out to meet the speedy St Mirren centre forward, and coolly picked the ball from his toe as he was about to shoot. Rae accomplished an almost similar performance at the other end, skipping the ball from Ward's feet. Jackson, who was not so sure as his partner, once completely missed his kick but, alas! none of the Aberdeen forwards got up in time to take advantage of the internationalist's mistake. As the game proceeded, Aberdeen, although doing most of the pressing, fell off, the pace of the first fifteen minutes being too hot to last long. On both sides the half-backs played strongly, Strang on the one side and McAvoy on the other being the most prominent, although Halkett excelled in brainy work. Ward, the Aberdeen pivot, was inclined to try too much, and was again and again robbed of the ball rather easily. He is not seen to advantage when tackled, but he is a trier, and has plenty of dash. Robertson, whose speed helped him to frequently beat Crawford, crossed on one occasion with splendid accuracy, and Lennie picked up the ball a few yards in front of Rae. He took too long to shoot, and was smartly robbed by Jackson, whose rapidity of recovery atoned for a decided weakness in tackling. Several of the St Mirren players were not over-particular in their methods of stopping the progress of their opponents, and the referee was hardly sharp enough in penalising. After McAvoy had driven the ball over the bar from a corner kick given away by Halkett, the Aberdeen forwards raced westwards in rare style. Edgar passing to Robertson, the speedy outside right beat Crawford and crossed. Jackson swung at the ball, but missed. McAulay, ten yards out, took a deliberate shot, but missed the mark by yards. So strongly did the backs on both sides repel the forwards that long shooting was tried by the half-backs, McAvoy and Low having creditable tries. Halkett ran round several opponents, and gave Rae a hot handful. For a few seconds the Aberdeen players bombarded the St Mirren goal, but the paisley defence was sound. Lennie trickily slipped past Jackson, but was tripped by the back, and again the St Mirren defence was sorely tried. Rae cleared a fast shot from Robertson at the expense of a corner, and a few minutes later Lennie finished a grand run by striking the cross-bar with a shot which, had it been a few inches lower would have found the net, as Rae was deceived in its flight. At the other end Murray and Gault were frequently troubled, the left back being shaky at times, while Murray's fielding of the ball was erratic. The St Mirren centre half had a shot which gave Macfarlane trouble, the goalkeeper fisting over the bar. Aberdeen certainly were the superior team in the first half, and had the worst of luck in not scoring. Just before half-time the St Mirren goal escaped disaster by a fluke. Lennie struck the upright with are raking shot, and, the ball rebounding into play, Edgar drove hard at an open goal. Crawford ran across, and Edgar's shot struck the leg of the back, who happened to come into the line of fire.
St Mirren started the second half in determined fashion, and the Aberdeen backs and half-backs had to work hard to beat back the attackers. Macfarlane made a slip which might have proved disastrous, he held a shot, but he let the ball slip out of his hands, and he just managed to scrape it away from the eager Paisley forwards. Frequently both Murray and Gault were beaten, and Macfarlane had once or twice to handle. Henry Low slowed down, and was frequently passed by Anderson, who was the most dangerous forward in the Paisley front line. The heads of McAulay and Greenlees came together sharply in attempting to head the ball, and both players were slightly hurt. The game was stopped for a few minutes, but both players were able to resume. Macfarlane brought off another daring save by running out to meet McPherson, and kicking the ball away as the St Mirren centre tried to pass him. Both teams played for all they were worth, and from end to end the ball was sent. At last Aberdeen scored. The ball went into touch near the St Mirren goal line. Halkett centred, and Rae fisted the ball almost straight up. When it came down again McAulay rushed it into the net, thus scoring what must be admitted was a lucky goal,as St Mirren had been a more aggressive team for some time. Aberdeen played with spirit after the success, and Rae gave away a corner when tackled by Lennie. Rae had to save from Robertson, and then at the other end Macfarlane gave away a corner by running out, picking up the ball, and punting it over his own goal line. Saint Mirren in the last ten minutes played desperately, and with the Aberdeen defence shaky, there were many anxious moments in front of Macfarlane, who just caught one shot from Wright between the post and the goal line and threw behind. Macfarlane was loudly cheered for another save from a corner kick. He trickily evaded a crowd of eager Paisley forwards, and in doing so appeared to cross the line with the ball in his hands. The Saints were still pressing when the whistle blew.
The Aberdeen team deserved their victory, as they would have had more goals but for defects in the forward line; Ward, Edgar, and McAulay all being weak.
Source: Aberdeen Daily Journal, 9th October 1905