SPL

More misery for Barry Robson’s Aberdeen as David Watson nets Kilmarnock winner

By Sports Desk December 06, 2023

Pressure continued to mount on Aberdeen boss Barry Robson as his side suffered a late 1-0 home defeat to Kilmarnock in the cinch Premiership.

Midfielder David Watson curled home the only goal of the match in the second minute of stoppage time as Derek McInnes’ side got one over his former employers for the second time this term.

Defeat saw the Dons’ winless league run stretch to four matches and left them just three points clear of bottom side Livingston.

On a bitterly cold Pittodrie night, the Dons showed three changes from their weekend defeat to Hibernian, with Angus MacDonald, Jonny Hayes and Luis ‘Duk’ Lopes coming into the side. Kilmarnock stuck with the same team that were beaten by Hearts.

The game took a while to get warmed up and it was beyond the 15-minute mark when Daniel Armstrong’s through ball sent Marley Watkins clear of the Dons defence, only for the returning MacDonald to make up the ground to make a timely tackle.

The home side’s first chance fell to Duk, who perhaps could have done better with his close-range diving header from Jamie McGrath’s cross.

At the other end, a deflected Armstrong shot gave the same man the opportunity to swing in a corner which was met powerfully by the head of Liam Donnelly and Kelle Roos in the Dons goal produced a fine save to push the effort over the crossbar.

With the play going from end to end, Nicky Devlin will have been disappointed not to have connected with a tempting low Graeme Shinnie cross, while two minutes later Duk’s smart turn and cross saw Bojan Miovski fire wide.

The Dons had the ball in the net after 39 minutes, but VAR confirmed Miovski had edged offside before he headed home Leighton Clarkson’s free-kick.

If anything the second half would prove to be even more scrappy, though Robson’s men forced some good spells of pressure without ever really troubling Will Dennis in the Killie goal.

Stefan Gartenmann was being allowed room on the right to provide an overload, and he delivered a 56th-minute cross which McGrath would have hoped to do better with.

A few minutes later came a scramble in the area with blue and white striped shirts seemingly coming from everywhere to block shots from Miovski and McGrath.

Killie lost both Brad Lyons and Donnelly to injury and the resultant changes forced a change of formation with Liam Polworth and Matty Kennedy coming off the bench.

They were duly punished as Watson seized on a loose ball 20 yards out to curl a superb strike beyond a helpless Roos.

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