Scottish Premiership
Aberdeen1Rangers1

Aberdeen 1-1 Rangers

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Highlights: Aberdeen 1-1 Rangers

Ross McCrorie's equaliser keeps Rangers in the hunt for second in the Scottish Premiership, although hosts Aberdeen stay a point ahead with one game left.

Dons goalkeeper Joe Lewis had already blocked well from Alfredo Morelos before the striker conceded a penalty for a challenge on Kenny McLean.

McLean dispatched the disputed spot-kick and struck the crossbar as the Dons dominated the rest of the half.

Rangers recovered after the break and McCrorie headed the vital reply.

It ended the Dons' run of three consecutive clean sheets and the Ibrox side's three-game winning run against their hosts.

But, despite Rangers caretaker manager Jimmy Nicholl having said before kick-off that it was a "must-win" for his side, it ensures that they, along with Aberdeen and Hibernian, will all go into Sunday's climax with a chance of finishing second behind Celtic.

The champions host Aberdeen while Rangers head to Easter Road for what could be a winner-takes-all showdown with a Hibs side who could draw level with their visitors should they win the Edinburgh derby away to Hearts on Wednesday.

Aberdeen had struggled massively against Rangers this season, but the incentive was obvious going into this game.

Revenge aside, they knew three points would ensure European football and allow them to take another huge step towards securing second place. It was quite simply massive.

Rangers always arrive in the north east with a swagger and an important weekend win over Kilmarnock allowed them to approach this with a familiar confidence.

They were slick with their passing, full of attacking intent and dangerous going forward. Aberdeen looked rocked back on their heels.

Aberdeen's Kenny McLean and Ryan Christie celebrate taking the lead
Kenny McLean put Aberdeen into the lead from the penalty spot

Morelos came close after good build up play by Graham Dorrans. The Colombian gathered and swivelled six yards out, but Lewis reached low to block the scuffed shot.

It had the visiting fans on their feet as they sensed a goal was coming. It was, but it came at the other end.

On a rare foray forward, McLean was caught late inside the box by Morelos and referee Steven McLean pointed to the spot instantly.

The midfielder, who will turn out for Norwich City next season, took it himself and smashed it home, showing real composure on his last match at Pittodrie.

Pittodrie erupted in a sea of red and the home side responded. There was more fight and belief as they started to dominate possession in a way that looked unlikely earlier in the match.

As the Dons pushed, Rangers started to lose their shape and their discipline as late challenge after late challenge was met with a flash of yellow card.

McLean almost made it two, but only the crossbar denied him after a fizzing shot from all of 30 yards.

The visitors started creeping back into the match after the break and Morelos should have scored from five yards, but his header from a James Tavernier cross was straight at Lewis.

It should have served as a warning to the home side, but they failed to heed it and the paid the price when Rangers found the equaliser.

After some determined midfield play, Morelos shot was diverted high into the air by the head of Scott McKenna and McCrorie out-jumped the disorientated defender to head past a stranded Lewis.

A share of the points was fair at the end to set up a mouth watering final-day round of fixtures.

Line-ups

Aberdeen

  • 1Lewis
  • 2LoganBooked at 90mins
  • 5O'Connor
  • 19McKennaBooked at 88mins
  • 4Considine
  • 7McLean
  • 18BallSubstituted forStewartat 72'minutes
  • 11Mackay-StevenSubstituted forRooneyat 90'minutes
  • 22Christie
  • 3ShinnieBooked at 71mins
  • 27CosgroveBooked at 27minsSubstituted forMayat 79'minutes

Substitutes

  • 6Reynolds
  • 8Stewart
  • 9Rooney
  • 14Arnason
  • 15Wright
  • 30Woodman
  • 83May

Rangers

  • 25Alnwick
  • 2Tavernier
  • 24BatesBooked at 22mins
  • 33Martin
  • 16HallidayBooked at 38mins
  • 40McCrorie
  • 21Candeias
  • 23HoltBooked at 44minsSubstituted forCummingsat 61'minutes
  • 10DorransBooked at 27minsSubstituted forGossat 32'minutesBooked at 87mins
  • 28Murphy
  • 20MorelosBooked at 90mins

Substitutes

  • 17Hodson
  • 18Rossiter
  • 22Bruno Alves
  • 26Cummings
  • 27Goss
  • 32Kelly
  • 48Docherty
Referee:
Steven McLean
Attendance:
17,745

Match Stats

Home TeamAberdeenAway TeamRangers
Possession
Home44%
Away56%
Shots
Home10
Away9
Shots on Target
Home5
Away3
Corners
Home8
Away4
Fouls
Home20
Away17

Live Text

Match ends, Aberdeen 1, Rangers 1.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Aberdeen 1, Rangers 1.

Booking

Shaleum Logan (Aberdeen) is shown the yellow card.

Substitution

Substitution, Aberdeen. Adam Rooney replaces Gary Mackay-Steven.

(Aberdeen) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Sean Goss (Rangers).

Booking

Alfredo Morelos (Rangers) is shown the yellow card.

Booking

Scott McKenna (Aberdeen) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Scott McKenna (Aberdeen).

Alfredo Morelos (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

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

Booking

Sean Goss (Rangers) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Graeme Shinnie (Aberdeen) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Sean Goss (Rangers).

Ryan Christie (Aberdeen) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Andy Halliday (Rangers).

Attempt missed. Greg Stewart (Aberdeen) right footed shot from the centre of the box is too high.

Attempt missed. Sean Goss (Rangers) left footed shot from the centre of the box is too high.

Foul by Scott McKenna (Aberdeen).

Alfredo Morelos (Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Substitution

Substitution, Aberdeen. Stevie May replaces Sam Cosgrove.

Sean Goss (Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Gary Mackay-Steven (Aberdeen).

Corner, Aberdeen. Conceded by Andy Halliday.

Graeme Shinnie (Aberdeen) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by James Tavernier (Rangers).

Attempt blocked. Sean Goss (Rangers) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Sean Goss (Rangers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Kenny McLean (Aberdeen).

Corner, Aberdeen. Conceded by Andy Halliday.

Attempt blocked. James Tavernier (Rangers) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Attempt saved. Gary Mackay-Steven (Aberdeen) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Substitution

Substitution, Aberdeen. Greg Stewart replaces Dominic Ball.

Booking

Graeme Shinnie (Aberdeen) is shown the yellow card.

Corner, Rangers. Conceded by Scott McKenna.

Attempt blocked. Alfredo Morelos (Rangers) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked.

Foul by Sam Cosgrove (Aberdeen).

Andy Halliday (Rangers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Ryan Christie (Aberdeen) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Alfredo Morelos (Rangers).

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic36249373244981
2Aberdeen37217955371870
3Rangers372161071452669
4Hibernian361812656391766
5Kilmarnock361510114847155
6Hearts361113123737046
7Motherwell37129164049-945
8St Johnstone37129164152-1145
9Dundee37116203656-2039
10Hamilton3796224765-1833
11Partick Thistle3779213061-3130
12Ross County37610213961-2228
View full Scottish Premiership table

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