Match ends, Aberdeen 2, Kilmarnock 1.
Aberdeen 2-1 Kilmarnock
Aberdeen built on last weekend's League Cup success with a laboured victory against Kilmarnock in the Premiership.
Over 14,000 fans watched the Dons work hard for a follow-up win they so badly craved, despite an early setback when Kris Boyd struck for Killie.
Adam Rooney's seventh Aberdeen goal brought his team level and Niall McGinn twice failed to add to that soon after.
But Ryan Jack's low, steered finish in the 72nd minute brought the hosts their third win of the season over Killie.
It keeps Aberdeen in second place with a game-in-hand over Motherwell, who sit level on 57 points with Derek McInnes's men.
Kilmarnock's desire to increase the distance between them and the relegation play-off spot will have to wait another week, but Partick Thistle, Ross County and St Mirren all losing on Saturday is consolation for manager Allan Johnston
Aberdeen sent out injured duo Peter Pawlett and Jonny Hayes to stroll around the Pittodrie pitch holding the League Cup trophy five minutes before kick-off, but how McInnes and the home crowd wished the midfield pair could have stayed there once referee Craig Thomson blew his starting whistle.
Reliance on the creativity and attacking surges of Pawlett, in particular, has been heavy, while Hayes can also conjure up something out of nothing in the final third.
It was that section of the park that Kilmarnock's Rory McKenzie made a piercing, unchallenged run into to create the opening goal for Boyd.
The visitors' top marksman knew too well how much his low strike on the turn, which rolled painfully past a helpless Jamie Langfield, would deflate the home crowd and celebrated by holding hand over mouth to rub in his 19th of the season.
Cammy Smith immediately whizzed a 20-yard shot a foot wide of Killie goalkeeper Craig Samson's goal to suggest Aberdeen would not let the set-back bother them, and Rooney's subsequent equaliser confirmed it.
At the hub of its creation was Nicky Low, who along with Smith looked to deputise for the likes of Pawlett, Hayes and the benched Barry Robson. Low's exchange of passes with Rooney allowed the latter to spin and direct a low shot - and one not unlike Boyd's finish - into Samson's net.
From there, the hosts found some momentum and both Rooney and Smith took turns to provide McGinn with a couple of opportunities which the Northern Irishman turned over.
Killie's second-half offering amounted to one Boyd shot from distance which Langfield dealt with comfortably. It was in defence where the visitors were winning their stripes.
Vitalijs Maksimenko and Lee Ashcroft repelled what came into the box as a result of Aberdeen's dominant possession and the Dons opted to introduce Robson in search of the telling delivery that would make the difference.
That cross arrived, although from the unlikely boot of Mark Reynolds. His low ball from the bye-line at the left-hand side was completely missed by Smith but rolled on to Jack, who stroked it beyond Samson at the Beach End of Pittodrie.
Jack went on to carve another chance for McGinn, who poked wide to confirm it was not his day in front of goal.
- 10McGinnSubstituted forMcManusat 86'minutes
- 18LowSubstituted forRobsonat 61'minutes
- 25GardyneSubstituted forEremenkoat 69'minutes
- 10JohnstonSubstituted forMoberg-Karlssonat 45'minutes
- 12Reguero Chapinal
- Craig Thomson
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Aberdeen 2, Kilmarnock 1.
Rory McKenzie (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Declan McManus (Aberdeen).
Substitution, Aberdeen. Declan McManus replaces Niall McGinn.
Foul by Ryan Jack (Aberdeen).
Manuel Pascali (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Attempt missed. Niall McGinn (Aberdeen) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left following a fast break.
Foul by Barry Robson (Aberdeen).
Sean Clohessy (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Goal! Aberdeen 2, Kilmarnock 1. Ryan Jack (Aberdeen) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the centre of the goal.
Adam Rooney (Aberdeen) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Lee Ashcroft (Kilmarnock).
Corner, Kilmarnock. Conceded by Mark Reynolds.
Substitution, Kilmarnock. Alexei Eremenko replaces Michael Gardyne.
Attempt blocked. Cameron Smith (Aberdeen) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.
Attempt missed. Russell Anderson (Aberdeen) right footed shot from the left side of the box is too high.
Corner, Aberdeen. Conceded by Jeroen Tesselaar.
Substitution, Aberdeen. Barry Robson replaces Nicky Low.
Nicky Low (Aberdeen) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Foul by Sean Clohessy (Kilmarnock).
Cameron Smith (Aberdeen) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Vitalijs Maksimenko (Kilmarnock).
Andrew Considine (Aberdeen) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Michael Gardyne (Kilmarnock).
Attempt saved. Kris Boyd (Kilmarnock) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.
Niall McGinn (Aberdeen) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Foul by David Moberg-Karlsson (Kilmarnock).
Nicky Low (Aberdeen) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Rory McKenzie (Kilmarnock).
Second Half begins Aberdeen 1, Kilmarnock 1.
Substitution, Kilmarnock. David Moberg-Karlsson replaces Chris Johnston.
First Half ends, Aberdeen 1, Kilmarnock 1.
Attempt saved. Kris Boyd (Kilmarnock) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.
Corner, Kilmarnock. Conceded by Cameron Smith.
Foul by Mark Reynolds (Aberdeen).
Michael Gardyne (Kilmarnock) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Attempt saved. Niall McGinn (Aberdeen) left footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the top left corner.
Attempt missed. Niall McGinn (Aberdeen) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right.
Russell Anderson (Aberdeen) wins a free kick on the left wing.