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Aberdeen 5 - 4 Kilmarnock

HT Score: Aberdeen 4 - 2 Kilmarnock

SPFL Development League
Aberdeen scorers: Wright 3, Shankland 13, Smith 28, Smith 35, Felek 76.
Kilmarnock scorers: Miller 40; Ashcroft 43; Kiltie 46; Splaine 59

16/09/2014 | KO: 14:00

Dons Go Nap in Hard Fought Encounter

The Dons lined up with Brown in goal, Murray at right back, Kelly at lefty back, with McKenna and Rose in the centre of defence. Gibbons was the holding midfielder alongside Storie with Monakana on the right, Wright on the left and with Smith playing as the front midfielder in behind Shankland.
Kilmarnock, who like the Dons have started the season strongly, included Lee Miller in their starting XI, the ex Don is fighting his way back to full fitness after missing the start of the season through injury. Both first team managers were watching in the stand and will have been impressed with a number of players on show.

Aberdeen got off to the perfect start when they opened the scoring after only three minutes. Monakana, who looked very lively all afternoon, did well down the right. He found Smith who played a neat pass to set up Wright and the winger produced a fine finish to power the ball past the keeper at his near post. The second goal came ten minutes later and once again Monakana did really well down the right wing. He ran from the half way line before putting over a good ball which the Killie defence failed to deal with. Scott Wright saw his initial shot blocked but the ball fell kindly for Shankland who showed great composure to coolly slot home. At this point it was not all one way traffic as the visitors had their chances as well. Chris Johnston was causing the Dons all sorts of problems down the right wing and he created a few openings. Scott McKenna had a great block on Johnston on one occasion, then Michael Rose had to clear a shot off the line, Lee Miller missed a good chance and Scott Brown made one good save when he got out quickly to block.
Aberdeen though were still looking very dangerous when they attacked and Cammy Smith, who had another outstanding game, went close on a couple of occasions. Just before the half hour mark he picked the ball up about 20 yards out after a square pass from Shankland. He then did well to make room for a shot and fired in a great left footed effort which appeared to clip the post and go in. A great finish. Seven minutes later Cammy grabbed his second after good pressing by Storie. He fed Shankland who played a fine layoff into the path of Smith and he nipped in to score. Kilmarnock got a goal back on 40 minutes after good play down the right wing. Johnston crossed for Lee Miller and he produced a good volley to beat Brown. Then a couple of minutes later they got a second when the Dons failed to defend a corner properly and Lee Ashcroft headed in. It could have been even worse for the young Dons as just before the break Murray had to produce a goal saving block to prevent number three.

Straight after the interval though the Ayrshire side did get a third and like the first team on Saturday the goal came with about 30 seconds of the restart. The ball was worked in from the left and then Greg Kiltie from about 25 yards curled a fantastic shot into the top right hand corner. It really was game on now. Kilmarnock were on top at this point and Lee Miller forced Scott Brown into a brilliant point black save before they did get a deserved equaliser just on the hour mark when Arron Splaine slotted home from close range. With half an hour to go all the momentum was with the visitors and you expected them to go and win the game and on about 65 minutes they cut the Dons open again and Chris Johnston missed a glorious chance to take the lead when he rolled a shot just past the post.
Aberdeen showed great character to get themselves back into the game. Paul Sheerin also made a few tactical changes and brought on Sam Robertson and Cem Felek. Felek had a powerful shot that was beat away by the keeper and Shankland then put one just over the bar. After 76 minutes the Dons won a free kick about 25 yards out after Smith was needlessly hauled down. Everyone walked away and left it for Felek to take. He stepped forward and left footed bent the ball over the wall and away from the keeper into the net. What a free kick!
The final 10 minutes were quite nervy and in the last few minutes Aberdeen had to withstand an onslaught. They just could not get hold of the ball but, well marshalled by Scott Brown, they just managed to hold on for another three points.

Kilmarnock Teamsheet
MacKay, Westlake, Lidington, Splaine, Ashcroft, Syme, Kiltie, O'Hara, Lee Miller, Johnston, Cairney
Venue: Glebe Park, Brechin