Splendid weather conditions attended the match at Pittodrie on Saturday, when Aberdeen engaged in a Scottish League match with Kilmarnock. The home team turned out a rearranged front rank, owing to the absence of McNair, who is suffering from a festering toe. Simpson filled the vacant position in the centre, and Blackburn along with Muir constituted the right wing. The only change in the visitors ranks was in the middle division, were buoyed turned out in place of short. Teams:-
Aberdeen: Mutch; Colman, Hume; Wilson, McIntosh, Low; Blackburn, Muir, Simpson, O'Hagan, Lennie.
Kilmarnock: Aitken; Armour, Mitchell; Halley, Barry, Boyd; A. Armour, Young, Douglas, Howie, Templeton.
Referee - Mr. A. A. Jackson, Glasgow.
Aberdeen, winning the toss, set the strangers to face a blinding sun. The first aggressive move was made by the local men, a forward touch by Low being picked up by O'Hagan, who dodged across the centre and crossed out to the right. Muir and Blackburn got down, and, Armour slipping in front of goal, Aitken had to leave his charge to clear the lines. Kilmarnock made off two wards Mutch, but Hume punted clear from Howie's foot, and a nicely combined attack took place at Aitken's end. Passages were from end to end, and Templeton came down on the left in what looked suspiciously like an offside position, while there was also doubt about the ball being in touch near the corner flag, but the referee did not signal, and the winger sent in a beautiful cross. The ball came in front of the goalmouth, and Young darted in with his head. The sphere flashed goal word, but the direction was too high, though there was nothing wrong with the effort. It seemed that the game was to be keenly fought, for the strangers were a big lot and made few mistakes. There was a moment of excitement at the sea end, where the Aberdeen attack refused to be shaken off. Simpson ultimately tried for goal from a difficult position, and his shot just landed in the side net. It was mostly Aberdeen's game now, but some effective work was put in until it came to goal getting. Simpson had another try for a point, and once more sent over. Muir was the next to test Aitken. He hooked the ball over his shoulder, and brought it well under the crossbar, where Aitken courted and sent out. A corner fell to the homesters, and when the sphere was headed out Wilson court on and tried a drive, which went past. A dangerous rush into Aberdeen Territory looked bad, but Colman cleared, and Muir and Blackburn made off on the wing. They were clear away, but Blackburn was upset by Armour. The resultant foul what the home fan well in on Aitken, and in a scramble within the penalty area one of the visitors handled the ball. Simpson took the free kick, and secured the first point with ease. Play seemed to quiet and after this, the game ruling mostly about midfield. The only break in the monotony for a time was a long cross from Blackburn in Aitken's direction, after which Kilmarnock bore down on the home defence. The attack lacked combination, and the effort was spoiled by Barry, who sent past with a long high shot. At the other end Lennie had an amusing bout with Armour, which resulted in the back coming violently to earth. Aitken's charge had a couple of narrow escapes a little later. Lennie sent in nicely from the margin of the field, and Simpson, in attempting to guide the ball into the net, blocked its course. A second later Wilfred Low drove hard into goal from far out, and the custodian only managed to hold the sphere on the goal line. Towards the interval Kilmarnock began to press, and the local defence had as much as they could do to keep their lines clear. A. Armour gave Douglas a fine chance, but the pivot missed the ball entirely when he practically had the goal at his mercy. A pass brought out a pretty run by O'Hagan and Lennie. The outside winger completely ran away from the opposition, and finished with a hot slanting drive, which Aitken almost let through. Simpson was playing a great game in the centre forward position, I and, while he put in a lot of hard work individually, his distribution of the play to the wings was judicious and effective. Just before the interval he had a great run, and he looked like getting within shooting range when he was brought down rather forcibly.
The second half started with a sensational run by the Aberdeen left wing. Lennie and O'Hagan combined beautifully, and the halves and backs were completely baffled in their attempts to stop the invasion. Lennie sent over a lovely cross, and Simpson, capping nicely at centre, sent in a hard drive which Aitken got his hands on, and diverted the course of the sphere over the bar. After a fruitless corner against the homesters, there was another great rush upon the Kilmarnock citadel, which, but for a lucky incident, would have placed the strangers one more goal down. The ball came down the centre, and a clever touch by O'Hagan sent it in Lennie's direction. Armour made a futile attempt to stop the winger, and the latter flashed the ball across to Simpson. The home pivot was in fine position, I and, with no one but the keeper to beat, all looked for goal. Simpson stopped rather long to steady himself for the final drive, and when he shot, Mitchell, who sprinted across, caught the ball with his foot, and only a fruitless corner resulted. It was very seldom that Kilmarnock got far into Aberdeen's territory now, and on these occasions they were promptly turned. Low and Blackburn both sent in stinging shots which the stalwart Killie keeper found hot to deal with. Aitken was kept continually on the move, and the attack came from all quarters, the local halves chiming in and strengthening the force of the front rank. On one occasion he can was seen to grasp the ball and O'Hagan round the neck in a ludicrously affectionate embrace - a result of the Irishman trying to head, and the keeper trying to catch the ball simultaneously. After another fine run on the left by Lennie, the visiting backs forced the ball up the field, and for a time it seemed that the Kilmarnock front rank was to overwhelm the home defenders. The strangers clustered round the local citadel, and Mutch caught a close drive from Howie in the nick of time. In trying to clear, however, Mutch held onto the ball too long, and a free kick was awarded. Two abortive corners resulted, and then Aberdeen once more swooped down on Aitken. The home forwards' play was pretty to watch, and they simply carry all before them. Lennie was a sore form in the flesh of Armour, and the spectators simply shrieked with the light when the little winger dodged round the barley back, and ultimately got clear, leaving the latter sitting on the grass. His cross was accepted by Simpson, but the centre forward was weak with his shot, and the keeper had little difficulty in sending out again. After a brief spell of aggressive play by the visitors, Aberdeen resumed their pressure, but it was not till another penalty was granted that they managed to increase their lead. Simpson was deliberately fouled by Mitchell on the verge of the fatal area, and Mr. Jackson unhesitatingly gave his decision. Simpson was again entrusted with the kick, I and, as on the previous occasion, he gave the custodian no chance. This additional reverse had little effect in improving the play of the visitors, and more pressure brought a corner to Aberdeen, from which Muir headed over the bar. A surprise run by the Kilmarnock left wing looked dangerous, but the cross was palpably missed by Armour, and the opportunity to reduce the leeway was lost. In the closing stages Barrie also missed a chance by misdirecting the ball when he had a clear field in front of goal. The strangers were not lacking in good combination at times, but they seemed to suffer from much the same fall as the Aberdeen men - bad finishing work. Just before the whistle sounded time, the Pittodrie forwards made a rush on Aitken, but Armour and Mitchell managed to stem the tide, and there was no further scoring.
It is not difficult to arrive at a brief verdict - Aberdeen ought to have led by at least two more goals on play. From a short time after the commencement, the asserted their superiority over the Killie team, and it was frequently the case that the visitors had as much as they could do to hold out the attack. The only unsatisfactory feature about the game, from an Aberdeen point of view, is that Aberdeen or their victory to two penalty goals, when so many great efforts worthy of points and went without reward. In both cases, however, the infringements were flagrant, and the referee could not have done otherwise that he did. The local front rank was a strong columbine, and all played effectively, with a considerable amount of science. Simpson is specially worthy of mention insofar as his position was a strange one. The halves were not brilliant, but they were good supports, while the defense was characteristically solid. Mutch was not overburdened with work, but when called upon the rose to the occasion. Of the Kilmarnock's men it can only be said that they were uniformly mediocre, with Templeton probably the best of the forwards. The halves could not hold the Aberdeen forwards, and while the backs were strong kicks, the tackling powers were deficient. Aiken in goal was the saviour of his side on several locations, and many of his saves were such as might be beyond the average custodian.
The drawings amounted to about £140 all in.
Source: Aberdeen Daily Journal, 28th September 1908