Scottish Premiership

Aberdeen 1-0 Dundee

By Scott DavieBBC Scotland at Pittodrie Stadium

Aberdeen moved to within two points of second-placed Rangers with a game in hand after a comfortable Scottish Premiership win over struggling Dundee.

A-Jay Leitch-Smith had an early opportunity for Dundee, but goalkeeper Freddie Woodman saved well.

The Dons edged in front when goalkeeper Elliot Parish failed to deal with a Ryan Christie cross and Graeme Shinnie finished into the unguarded net.

It was all Aberdeen after the break, but one goal was enough.

The Dons' ninth straight win over Dundee means they have not lost to the visitors in 11 meetings since November 2014.

Dundee remain in ninth place but have now fallen two points behind Hamilton Academical, who drew away to bottom side Ross County and also have two games in hand.

The bitterly cold wind that whipped across Pittodrie and the terrible state of the pitch meant there was little chance of fluent, attractive football in a game that had a lot at stake for both teams.

Dundee manager Neil McCann had a number of experienced players back after the debacle of last week's controversial 4-0 home defeat by St Johnstone, but there was still a nervy edge to the visitors' play.

Josh Meekings certainly looked on edge early on after his own personal nightmare the previous Saturday, but it was Leitch-Smith and Parish who were culpable for them going into the interval a goal down.

Dundee largely dealt comfortably with all Aberdeen could throw at them early on and actually posed a problem or two of their own going forward with shots from distance by Kevin Holt and Roarie Deacon.

Dundee's A-Jay Leitch-Smith has a shot saved by Aberdeen's Freddie Woodman
A-Jay Leitch-Smith had Dundee's best chance, but his shot shot was saved by Freddie Woodman

However, you have to make the most of any chances created when you are down there fighting for your top-flight survival and no-one will ponder that more than Leitch-Smith, who raced clear after 29 scrappy minutes.

The on-loan front man made a hash of the one-on-one situation, allowing Woodman to psyche him out as he pretty much hit his shot off the Englishman on loan from Newcastle United.

That always looked like being an expensive miss, an impression that was confirmed when the Dons hit the front seven minutes later as their increasing pressure finally paid off with a goal from their captain.

It was a howler from Parish, who came out into traffic in an attempt to gather Christie's cross but dropped the ball under pressure to allow Shinnie to drill the loose ball home.

The Dundee manager replaced Sofien Moussa with Simon Murray at half-time in an effort to get back into the game, but Niall McGinn had a chance to put the result beyond them within in seconds of the restart only to fire just over the crossbar.

Parish nearly gifted them a second as the goalkeeper fumbled Chidi Nwakali's bouncing 25-yard shot and was relieved when Christie hit the rebound against him.

Stevie May had a good chance to end any doubt about the outcome but shot against the goalkeeper when he should have done better.

McCann can take some consolation from the result considering the lost 7-0 to the Dons at the same stage last season, but Dundee never really looked like fashioning an equaliser, with Woodman virtually a spectator in the second half.

Post-match reaction

Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes: "Once we got in front, we were the dominant team, I thought we controlled the match and didn't offer Dundee any real opportunities.

"We could have added to the goal as we had two or three good opportunities and Stevie May had a goal disallowed that I would like to see again.

"Bearing in mind the conditions, bearing in mind the pitch and the surface, that's as good as we can play.

"The players deserve a lot of credit and it's another step towards where we want to be.

"It was a very good team goal and Graeme Shinnie was at the heart of most things good."

Dundee manager Neil McCann: "It was an awful game of football. I've heard Derek speak about how poor the pitch is - I saw that today with my own eyes.

"You throw in the wind, it was swirling all over the place, it was blowing heavily and it made it really difficult for the two sets of players to get the ball on the ground.

"The first half was very even and we've got a golden opportunity. Actually, if you'd have hand-picked any of the strikers going through, A-Jay is normally really composed.

"He said it just wouldn't sit for him and I could see that, he was trying to get it down, but he doesn't take it.

"Not long after that we conceded a calamitous goal.

"That's been the story of our season - we create chances, don't take them and we cough up really, really poor goals."



Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 30Woodman
  • 2Logan
  • 5O'Connor
  • 19McKenna
  • 4Considine
  • 23NwakaliSubstituted forStewartat 72'minutes
  • 3ShinnieBooked at 9mins
  • 17McGinnSubstituted forMackay-Stevenat 90+2'minutes
  • 7McLean
  • 22Christie
  • 83MaySubstituted forRooneyat 90+1'minutes


  • 8Stewart
  • 9Rooney
  • 11Mackay-Steven
  • 14Arnason
  • 18Ball
  • 20Rogers
  • 27Cosgrove


Formation 3-5-1-1

  • 12Parish
  • 4Caulker
  • 24MeekingsSubstituted forKerrat 78'minutes
  • 6O'Dea
  • 7Leitch-Smith
  • 14O'Hara
  • 8Kamara
  • 21Deacon
  • 3Holt
  • 18McGowan
  • 9MoussaSubstituted forMurrayat 47'minutes


  • 2Kerr
  • 15Aurtenetxe
  • 17Murray
  • 20El Bakhtaoui
  • 27Curran
  • 38Ferie
  • 47Lambert
William Collum

Match Stats

Home TeamAberdeenAway TeamDundee
Shots on Target

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Aberdeen 1, Dundee 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Aberdeen 1, Dundee 0.

  3. Substitution

    Substitution, Aberdeen. Gary Mackay-Steven replaces Niall McGinn.

  4. Post update

    Attempt missed. Anthony O'Connor (Aberdeen) header from the centre of the box misses to the right following a set piece situation.

  5. Substitution

    Substitution, Aberdeen. Adam Rooney replaces Stevie May.

  6. Post update

    Hand ball by Cammy Kerr (Dundee).

  7. Post update

    Attempt missed. Kenny McLean (Aberdeen) left footed shot from outside the box is just a bit too high.

  8. Post update

    Corner, Aberdeen. Conceded by Darren O'Dea.

  9. Post update

    Corner, Aberdeen. Conceded by Cammy Kerr.

  10. Post update

    Kevin Holt (Dundee) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  11. Post update

    Foul by Stevie May (Aberdeen).

  12. Post update

    Foul by Graeme Shinnie (Aberdeen).

  13. Post update

    Mark O'Hara (Dundee) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  14. Post update

    Corner, Aberdeen. Conceded by Paul McGowan.

  15. Post update

    Corner, Aberdeen. Conceded by Darren O'Dea.

  16. Substitution

    Substitution, Dundee. Cammy Kerr replaces Josh Meekings.

  17. Post update

    Attempt missed. Kenny McLean (Aberdeen) left footed shot from the right side of the box is too high.

  18. Post update

    Corner, Aberdeen. Conceded by Mark O'Hara.

  19. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Greg Stewart (Aberdeen) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

  20. Post update

    Corner, Aberdeen. Conceded by Mark O'Hara.

As It Stood

8St Johnstone3097143043-1334
11Partick Thistle3067172650-2425
12Ross County3057183353-2022
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