Dundee sealed their place in the top six of the cinch Premiership as they completed a controversial week with a goalless draw at Aberdeen.

The Dark Blues were the better side for long spells of a match that saw Dons captain Graeme Shinnie sent off in injury time.

After the postponement of their midweek clash with Rangers, the visitors arrived at Pittodrie knowing their place in the top six would be confirmed if they matched Hibernian’s result away to Motherwell.

But the home side had other ideas.

The lively Duk was brought down by Antonio Portales in the opening stages, with the defender earning the first of three bookings for fouls on the Cape Verde man in the first quarter of the game.

From the resulting free-kick Leighton Clarkson’s effort was pushed over the bar by Jon McCracken in the Dundee goal.

Another Clarkson set-piece saw Nicky Devlin head tamely towards goal before Bojan Miovski’s persistence in the right channel fashioned an opening for Clarkson himself, only for the former Liverpool man to hit wide.

Dundee had been lively without creating a clear-cut chance until Connor Barron’s lose touch after 20 minutes allowed Luke McCowan to steal possession before playing in Lyall Cameron, but Kelle Roos stood up well to block.

A lull in the action followed until Joe Shaughnessy’s knock-down gave Dundee’s Amadou Bakayoko a chance at the edge of the area, but he sliced well wide.

Cameron then tried his luck from 20 yards, but his effort clipped the bar on the way over.

Dundee had found their feet and had the first chance of the second period as McCowan flashed a free-kick well wide.

Miovski’s neat touch allowed him to create a chance for Duk, who saw McCracken push his crisp strike wide at the near post.

But it was the visitors who had the better of the second period and Cameron should have broken the deadlock when Scott Tiffoney picked him out at the corner of the six-yard box, only for Angus MacDonald to block.

Substitute Curtis Main thought he had broken the deadlock after 72 minutes, but the flag went up for an offside against Bakayoko.

With Hibs wining at Motherwell, the Dark Blues were now throwing everything forward in search of a winner, Main again threatening, this time with a bicycle kick.

That of course left spaces at the back and Aberdeen suddenly sparked into life, with a late Duk header forcing a save from McCracken, just before news of a Motherwell equaliser got the visiting fans off their seats.

Stefan Gartenmann flashed a bicycle kick wide for the Dons deep in injury time before Shinnie, already booked for a foul on Dara Costelloe, picked up a second yellow for a late challenge on Malachi Boateng.

Aberdeen have claimed VAR is having a negative impact on Scottish football after discovering officials effectively “guessed” that their stoppage-time winner at Livingston should be disallowed following a technical failure.

The Dons saw their hopes of a cinch Premiership top-six finish disappear when Bojan Miovski’s goal was disallowed for an offside against Angus MacDonald in the build-up.

Aberdeen argued their “relative public silence” on VAR issues was “no longer tenable” following talks with the Scottish Football Association on the decision and hearing transcripts from the match officials.

The talks revealed the video assistants were unable to calibrate the lines because of a camera failure, instead freezing the footage to determine by eye, as is allowed by the VAR protocols. Video assistant Matthew MacDermid decided MacDonald was offside.

The SFA later produced retrospective footage to prove the right decision had been made in the end.

An Aberdeen statement read: “The Scottish FA accepted there is no conceivable way the VAR could tell definitively the deepest position of Livingston midfielder Daniel McKay’s body, because from the only angle available – the 18-yard box camera on the Main Stand side – the lower half of McKay’s body is completely obscured from view, blocked by other players.

“Even if his full body was visible, it’s impossible to determine who was closest to the goal line with no on-pitch ‘markers’.

“Therefore, it was acknowledged by all in attendance at the meeting that the VARs had to effectively guess on what that position might have been based on the limited information available to them, and that was the basis on which to overrule the on-field call of the assistant referee, who did not raise his flag.

“It is our strong belief that in such an instance, and for the integrity of the game, the match officials should stick with their original on-field decision without the strength of evidence to overturn that and essentially re-referee the passage of play.

“This course of action was chosen ahead of asking the referee himself to look at the freeze frame and make a determination, which is permitted under the protocols when it’s a matter of opinion rather than factual, or more appropriately, in absence of a definitive outcome from the camera, sticking with the on-field decision, and giving the benefit of the doubt.”

The club added: “What this situation demonstrates, in our opinion, is that the version of VAR that Scottish football has, or more accurately, can afford, is not suitable for the purpose in which it is intended.

“It perfectly highlights the limitations in the technology, the inappropriate implementation, the consistency of decision-making, and the negative impact on the overall experience for the match-going supporter.

“This is, of course, not an issue that we believe is in any way exclusive to Aberdeen FC.

“We are not being partisan because we believe a decision, or at least a process, has not been at all effective at the weekend.

“We acknowledge there have been occasions where we ourselves have been fortunate to have benefitted from some of the observations and limitations raised.”

Aberdeen pledged to continue playing an active role in the ongoing review of VAR’s use in Scotland and try to improve the output.

They added that they did not believe VAR is “enhancing the game in this country”.

The SFA later stated that Hawkeye’s review confirmed that the relevant camera had suffered a “loss of calibration”.

A statement added: “During the review, Hawkeye were able to reprocess the data through their system and draw the calibrated offside lines from the disallowed goal, which showed Angus MacDonald to be in an offside position.

“The VAR made the decision using the technology that was available and this decision was validated by Hawkeye’s retrospective recalibration conducted as part of their review.”

Aberdeen interim manager Peter Leven rued Bojan Miovski’s late disallowed goal as the Dons were held to a 0-0 cinch Premiership draw away to bottom side Livingston.

The striker’s close-range effort looked to have settled a disappointing game in the final minute before it was disallowed, after VAR spotted Angus MacDonald had been offside in the build-up.

The Dons – who finished third last season – have endured a frustrating season and this result confirmed they would definitely finish in the bottom six this time around.

Leven said: “I’ve not seen the angle back. Angus (MacDonald) thought he was onside but I’ve not seen it back.

“It was a sickener at the end. It’s a great finish but overall I don’t think we did enough to put pressure on their goal.

“From back to middle we were all right but I don’t think we had that spark in the final third.

“It was difficult with the high winds and the dry pitch. We tried to get the ball down and play and we punched it through the lines.

“We saw that with the pass for Bojan and Leighton Clarkson got the ball a couple of times. It’s difficult for both teams.

“I see it as two points dropped to be honest. We don’t get the goal in the 90th minute but I’m delighted with the clean sheet.

“That’s really important to build on that but I’ve always said, if we can’t win we don’t lose.”

Livingston manager David Martindale, meanwhile, praised the character of his side as they hung on for a point to close the gap to second-bottom Ross County – to nine points – with six games remaining.

He said: “One thing you can never question from the group of players is the character. I thought they gave everything today.

“The weather wasn’t good. The amount of head knocks. It was stop-start and not any fluidity. In that first half, both teams had their best chances.

“The second half, I felt we were the better team if I’m honest. I am not being disrespectful to Aberdeen.

“We tried to build. We got into good offensive areas. I felt the execution in the final third was missing.

“Whether that was down to our decision-making or Aberdeen defending well. Probably a wee bit of both.

“We were unlucky not to take something more from the game today if I’m honest.”

Bojan Miovski saw his late goal disallowed by VAR as Aberdeen were forced to settle for a point in a goalless cinch Premiership draw with Livingston at the Tony Macaroni Arena.

The striker looked to have settled a poor-quality contest when he fired home from close range in the dying moments but Angus MacDonald was found to have been offside in the build-up following a VAR intervention.

The Dons had had the better chances, with Miovski earlier denied by Shamal George when clean through and Jamie McGrath hitting the woodwork with a deep cross that almost crept in.

Livingston’s best opportunity came in the opening five minutes when Steven Bradley headed the ball wide from six yards out.

Aberdeen remain ninth in the league, while Livingston are now nine points adrift of Ross County at the foot of the table.

Livingston manager David Martindale had made just one change from the side who lost to Celtic last time out, with Jason Holt dropping out and Daniel Mackay coming in.

Aberdeen, meanwhile, were unchanged following their important 2-1 win over Ross County last weekend.

It was the hosts who should have taken an early lead in the fourth minute as Sean Kelly’s left-wing cross found Bradley, who headed just wide when he should have scored.

Aberdeen’s first chance came in the 20th minute and it was a golden opportunity as Miovski was released through on goal by Leighton Clarkson but the striker’s effort was well blocked by Livi goalkeeper George.

It was a stop-start first half with a number of lengthy delays following head knocks to Tete Yengi, McGrath and Michael Nottingham, although all three were eventually able to continue.

It was not until the 41st minute that the next chance was created as Steven Kelly had a left-footed shot from the edge of the box that was parried to safety by Kelle Roos.

Despite nine added minutes, there was to be no breakthrough as a forgettable first half came to an end.

McGrath had the first effort of the second half in the 52nd minute, firing in a near-post free-kick that was palmed away by George.

In a flurry of activity, substitute MacDonald saw a header blocked from the resulting corner and – in the same passage of play – McGrath’s deep cross cannoned off the far post with George scrambling in the windy conditions.

Martindale threw on Bruce Anderson after an hour and the substitute nearly had an instant impact, volleying over at the near post from a Mackay cross.

The second half was low on quality but Aberdeen thought they had snatched it at the death as Miovski bundled the ball home after George had saved Stefan Gartenmann’s header.

But, following a VAR check, MacDonald was adjudged to have been offside from the original free-kick as a disappointing match ended goalless.

Aberdeen caretaker boss Peter Leven hailed his side’s “character” but admitted their performance left plenty of room for improvement, despite a vital 2-1 cinch Premiership victory over relegation rivals Ross County.

The victory, secured thanks to goals from Bojan Miovski and Jamie McGrath, either side of Simon Murray’s header for County, moved the Dons six points clear of their opponents, who remain second bottom.

Leven said: “I’m delighted with the three points and the result, but the performance could have been better.

“I thought we started well and then County came into it a bit. I always knew we had the players who could get us the next goal.

“At half time I told them to relax on the ball. They looked nervous at times and they were trying the hard pass when the simple pass was on. They were better in the second half and I thought the subs really impacted the game.

“When Duk is like that, he’s a handful for anybody with his power and pace. He did really well for the second goal.

“The character the boys showed was brilliant. They were fighting for everything and the boys were focused.”

The Staggies are also under interim management and Don Cowie admitted this match was a missed opportunity for his side.

He said: “I thought it was a really good performance and the team responded really well to a poor start.

“The team were perhaps a little bit spooked for 10 minutes, but the response was excellent and we deserved to go in level.

“I felt that we could step on and win it after that, but if you can’t win it you have to make sure you don’t lose it and we have to learn from that.

“Every game you play is an opportunity and we’ve come away with nothing, so there’s a natural disappointment there, but I’m so proud of the team and the way we’ve played.

“It’s a team that’s working hard for each other and there’s real quality in there as well, but we have to build on that.

“We’ve shown over the last seven or eight games that we can be dangerous, but we need to start picking up points away from home and it’s about those fine lines.”

Aberdeen recorded a second straight cinch Premiership victory with a 2-1 home win over Ross County to move six points clear of their visitors, who remain in the relegation play-off place.

Bojan Miovski and Jamie McGrath struck at either end of the match to give their side the points, although the defending that lead to Simon Murray’s 17th goal of the season exposed their soft underbelly.

The home side were quick out of the traps, with Miovski testing George Wickens just two minutes in, only for a debatable offside flag to render the goalkeeper’s save moot.

But the visitors did not heed the warning and were behind after after minutes.

This time it was Junior Hoilett who slid the pass down the side of the County defence and, although Miovski seemed to have been forced wide, his prodded effort trundled through a ruck of players and across the line, despite the despairing late lunge of Loick Ayina.

Perhaps the goal gave Don Cowie’s men a wake-up call as they began to edge back into the game.

Josh Reid was denied a leveller when Murray played him in, only for the wing-back to be foiled by Kelle Roos’ low save.

But Murray brought his side level, first winning a corner off Stefan Gartenmann before heading home unchallenged at the back post from Yan Dhanda’s whipped delivery.

Aberdeen’s bright start was now a distant memory and, while Michee Efete was called offside when he blasted over from close range, it was another warning for the home side.

There were signs of life for the Dons early in the second half, but the Staggies could have been in front in the 65th minute as Dhanda’s powerful drive forced Roos to push over.

The introduction of Duk brought some fresh impetus to the hosts’ attack and he charged on to a long ball that drew Wickens out of his area.

The latter took out the former and the keeper was perhaps lucky to escape with a yellow card after a VAR check.

Leighton Clarkson whipped the resulting free-kick inches wide of an upright.

Duk was involved again when his side took the lead after 78 minutes. His quick spin in the area took out his man and he laid the ball on a plate for McGrath to turn home from six yards.

It could have been three for Aberdeen when Dante Polvara’s vicious half-volley cannoned back off the bar late on and, although they survived a late VAR check for Gartnemann’s challenge on Murray, it was ultimately job done for the Pittodrie men.

Aberdeen recorded their first cinch Premiership victory of 2024 with a 1-0 win over Motherwell at Fir Park.

Leighton Clarkson slammed home the decisive goal after 25 minutes to end a run of 12 games without a league win for the Dons and move them three points clear of second-bottom Ross County.

Motherwell thought they had drawn themselves level when Lennon Miller found the net five minutes before half-time but they were denied following a lengthy VAR check.

Aberdeen leapfrogged St Johnstone into ninth, while Motherwell’s chances of a top-six spot are fading fast after losing ground on sixth-placed Hibernian.

There was a controversial moment inside the opening 40 seconds when Junior Hoilett was shown a yellow card for a dive inside the box.

Dons striker Bojan Miovski came close to ending his run of seven games without a goal with a deft chip that sailed just past the post.

Motherwell almost opened the scoring with their first opportunity. Blair Spittal’s free-kick was only partially cleared and it required a vital block by Jack MacKenzie to divert Dan Casey’s close-range effort behind for a corner.

Dons caretaker Peter Leven was forced into an early change as Nicky Devlin hobbled off and was replaced by Jack Milne in the 22nd minute.

Aberdeen made the breakthrough thanks to a controlled finish from Clarkson after Miovski’s shot had cannoned off the post.

Motherwell responded in a positive fashion. Sam Nicholson passed up a good opportunity to level after superbly controlling Stephen O’Donnell’s pass from deep inside his own half before firing against the legs of Kelle Roos.

It looked like Miller had found an equaliser when he angled a low drive that deflected beyond Roos. However, his goal was ruled out after a lengthy VAR check deemed Theo Bair to have handled in the build-up.

An eventful first half ended with further chances. Connor Barron should have doubled Aberdeen’s lead after he rose unmarked to meet Hoilett’s corner and Liam Kelly was then forced into a good stop to turn Miovski’s goal-bound shot over the bar.

Stuart Kettlewell made a double change at half-time as he introduced Georgie Gent and Andy Halliday in place of Bevis Mugabi and Nicholson.

The hosts were struggling to break through the stubborn Dons defence and they almost found themselves two goals behind when Miovski brought out a fantastic one-handed save from Kelly.

Spittal had a tame effort gathered, before Casey took the brunt of a fizzing Jamie McGrath shot in the face.

Two fine saves from Roos in quick succession kept out Bair and the Canadian striker then glanced wide from his third chance in the space of a minute.

Halliday was next to force a crucial save from Roos with a curling effort from the edge of the box.

The away side were still offering a threat on the counter-attack, and Kelly produced some heroics of his own to deny Dante Polvara.

Rangers moved level on points with cinch Premiership leaders Celtic as Neil Warnock’s first game as Aberdeen boss ended with a 2-1 defeat at Ibrox.

The 75-year-old’s appointment until the end of the season had captured interest UK-wide but, in a turbo-charged start to the game by the home side, winger Rabbi Matondo capitalised on a mistake by Dons keeper Kelle Roos to give Gers the lead.

However, Dons striker Bojan Miovski levelled as the first-half entered three added minutes with his 20th goal of the season.

Rangers piled on the pressure in the second half and in the 73rd minute, when Roos palmed away a Tom Lawrence thunderbolt, Todd Cantwell followed up to finish it off.

Rangers second-half substitute Dujon Sterling was shown a straight red card by referee Don Robertson in the 88th minute for a tackle on Jack MacKenzie – the official stuck with his decision despite the VAR asking him to check his pitchside monitor – and the 10-man home side played out eight added minutes before victory was confirmed.

Rangers and Celtic are now on 58 points with the Hoops boasting a superior goal difference of just one.

Celtic play at Hibernian on Wednesday, which will again leave the Light Blues with a game in hand as the title race heats up further.

Gers boss Philippe Clement brought in John Souttar, Ridvan Yilmaz, Lawrence and Cyriel Dessers with Mohamed Diomande, the 22-year-old midfielder signed on a loan from Nordsjaelland with an obligation for the Light Blues to buy, on the bench.

Warnock’s first team selection showed two changes from the side which started in the draw against Celtic at weekend with Jonny Hayes and Leighton Clarkson in for Dante Polvara and Killian Phillips.

The home supporters were up for the game and soon had something to cheer with a goal initiated by Matondo’s pass to Cantwell.

The Gers player moved the ball on to winger Ross McCausland whose low drive from the edge of the box seemed to lack real power to trouble Roos but he spilled the shot to the on-rushing Matondo who blasted it into the net from close range.

It was mostly all Rangers.

Matondo hesitated before getting a shot away after he had carved open the Aberdeen defence and his effort was blocked for a corner which Lawrence headed over.

Rangers appeared in control but when midfielder Connor Barron lobbed the ball forward it caught the Light Blues napping and Miovski fended off defender Connor Goldson and slipped the ball past Butland with assurance.

The goal turned the Ibrox crowd into critics and there was a different feel to the start of the second half.

Roos made saves from Matondo and Dessers but the flag was up for offside. That was enough for Clement.

Matondo made way for new boy Oscar Cortes, the Colombian winger on loan from Lens, with Fabio Silva replacing Dessers.

Aberdeen were pinned back in their own half but a well-organised and determined defence kept an increasingly frantic Rangers at bay.

The Dons repelled a series of corners with Roos blocking a Lawrence shot with his foot following one of Yilmaz’s deliveries.

However, Lawrence’s next effort from distance was venomous and although the Pittodrie keeper made a decent save, the ball fell to Cantwell who slid the ball back into the net for his fifth goal in eight games.

Amid more substitutions, Diomande replaced Cantwell in the 85th minute to make his debut and took part in a frantic finale where Sterling, on for Lawrence, was dismissed with referee Robertson asked to check his pitchside monitor by the VAR only to stick to his guns.

It was quite an introduction to Scottish football for Warnock but Rangers continue their chase of Celtic.

Nicolas Kuhn scored his first goal for Celtic but pre-match dissent from the visiting supporters at Pittodrie was amplified as a strong second-half performance from Aberdeen earned the hosts a point.

Celtic ran out to chants of “sack the board” and a banner which read “Celtic board, on your heads be it” as the fans expressed their displeasure over the club’s transfer window business.

Their team had a goal disallowed and hit the bar twice in a one-sided first half but Bojan Miovski gave Aberdeen the lead with their first effort at goal in the 50th minute and his 19th goal of the season.

German winger Kuhn levelled in the 64th minute in his second appearance for Celtic but the game remained in the balance and the 1-1 draw ended a run of six consecutive wins for the cinch Premiership leaders since they lost back-to-back games in December.

Aberdeen had first-team coach Peter Leven in charge following the sacking of manager Barry Robson and he handed a first start to the club’s sole January signing, on-loan Crystal Palace midfielder Killian Phillips.

Celtic had both of their new signings, German winger Kuhn and on-loan Norwich forward Adam Idah, on the bench as Maik Nawrocki replaced the injured Cameron Carter-Vickers.

The defender’s ball over the top earned Celtic their first real chance and Luis Palma was celebrating after converting the rebound from Liel Abada’s saved effort. The Honduran winger was clearly offside though, however it took the VAR team several minutes to disallow the goal.

Celtic continued to create a steady stream of first-half chances. Kelle Roos saved comfortably from Palma and Abada and the former missed a great opportunity after Alistair Johnston’s cross found him in space on the corner of the six-yard box. His shot hit the top of the bar and went over.

Paulo Bernardo lobbed a delicate effort over a crowded goalmouth and off the top of the bar as Celtic continued to dominate. They had 13 first-half shots at goal, but only three on target with Matt O’Riley and Alexandro Bernabei off target just before the break.

Aberdeen had barely managed to get the ball in the final third but they re-emerged from the interval with a new-found vigour and quickly turned defence into attack when a Celtic move up the left broke down.

Dante Polvara’s forward pass set Miovski up to run at Nawrocki and the striker shifted the ball inside before curling home from 18 yards.

The game was transformed. Aberdeen threatened from a series of set-pieces with Celtic blocking several shots and Phillips almost made himself an instant hero with an audacious 45-yard chip which had Joe Hart beaten but just drifted off target.

It was another recent signing that was soon celebrating though. Kuhn and Idah came on along with Anthony Ralston in the 59th minute and the winger soon made his mark as he cut in from the right, played a one-two and then got the ball back from Idah before shooting in off Nicky Devlin.

Both teams went all out to get ahead. O’Riley saw a deflected effort hit the outside of the post and Hart saved from Connor Barron after Nawrocki’s poor clearance.

The offside flag went up after good chances at either end and Graeme Shinnie looked all set to score only to hit Hart with his shot. Leighton Clarkson looked offside from Shinnie’s header before he got the ball back.

Miovski was definitely offside when he beat Hart to Clarkson’s low cross and knocked the ball into the net from close range.

Celtic finished strongly but Roos came off his line to foil O’Riley and substitute Stephen Welsh headed over with the last action of the game before the away supporters resumed chants against the board while applauding the players.

Aberdeen boss Barry Robson remained in bullish mood after a 1-1 cinch Premiership draw with Dundee saw the pressure on his position ramped up further.

Chants of “We want Robson out” were among the cleaner of those heard around Pittodrie at the end of another disappointing performance, though the clouds briefly cleared after Bojan Miovski converted a first-half spot-kick.

Ester Sokler saw a second goal ruled out five minutes after the interval but from consecutive corners, Lee Ashcroft was first denied by Kelle Roos before then turning home from a second delivery.

The result leaves Aberdeen in eighth place, while Dundee move ahead of Hibs into sixth.

And Robson said: “I thought we looked a bit leggy in the game – it’s the fourth game in 10 days.

“As well as the penalty, if Graeme [Shinnie] had scored then I think we’d have been in a great position to be 2-0 up, and Jamie McGrath misses a great chance to score early in the second half.

“I don’t think we were really good, but I thought we were alright and had enough in the game to win it.

“The fans were applauding when I came and some of them will sing these kind of songs, which is OK. I accept that and I signed up for the job.

“All I can focus on is coming in tomorrow and try to make us better and try to win the next game”.

Dundee boss Tony Docherty, the former Aberdeen assistant manager, admitted his greed after saying he was disappointed to only take a point from the match.

With eight men out for the game, his squad was boosted by the return of defender Owen Beck on loan from Liverpool until the end of the season after a successful first half of the campaign and the youngster could have netted an injury-time winner.

Docherty said: “We’re back into the top six which is progress for us, I can’t credit the players any more.

“There’s a real good spirit and mentality. There’s a toughness that makes me proud as a manager.

“It’s important that we put in a good 45-minute performance tonight, but I’m looking for more. We need to make Dens Park a real difficult arena for anyone to visit.

“To go into that fixture tonight with eight men out and come away disappointed we’ve not won is testament to the players and shows where we are at the moment.”

Lee Ashcroft’s back-post header earned Dundee a point to move them into the cinch Premiership top six in a Pittodrie draw that will do nothing to ease the pressure on Aberdeen boss Barry Robson.

The Dons’ hopes of matching last term’s third-place finish have been all but extinguished before January is out, with their form being patchy at best.

And while Bojan Miovski’s first-half penalty provided some brief hope of an improvement, Aberdeen ultimately served up the kind of insipid performance that has some sections of the Dons support calling for the manager’s head.

The crowd’s nerves would not have been helped by an early Dundee attack that saw Zach Robinson’s low cross only narrowly missed by the sliding Amadou Bakayoko.

A Kelle Roos clearance would later come off the on-loan Forest Green Rovers man but, fortunately for the Aberdeen keeper, spun away to safety.

Aberdeen had chances of their own in between, Miovski seizing on a short pass from returning Dundee loanee Owen Beck only for Trevor Carson to save well.

Captain Graeme Shinnie should have done better when he latched onto a long ball over the top but, in trying to lift over Carson, put the ball well wide of target with just the keeper to beat.

Miovski gave his side the lead from the spot, stroking into the bottom right corner after former Don Joe Shaughnessy had taken Ester Sokler’s standing leg in attempting to clear a Jack Milne cross.

Another Milne cross saw Sokler this time head into the arms of Carson before the half ended with a late VAR check on Leighton Clarkson’s foul on Lyall Cameron, with no further action taken.

A smart near-post finish by Sokler seemed to have put the Dons 2-0 up five minutes after the interval only to be denied by the offside flag, and that lifted Dundee.

Roos saved Ashcroft’s back-post header from a left-wing corner but after Beck trudged across the park to take from the other flank, his delivery found the same man who this time turned home to level the scores.

From there the match descended into a bore draw; neither keeper was threatened and the main route forward was the long ball, a tactic that has long fed into the criticism of Robson.

With matches against both halves of the Old Firm up next, he will fear the chants of “sacked in the morning” doing the rounds at Pittodrie – as Cameron flashed a late Dundee chance wide – may not be far off the mark.

St Johnstone manager Craig Levein admitted he had ditched a plan to take debutant David Keltjens off before the Israel international netted a late equaliser against Aberdeen.

Saints appeared to be heading towards a hard-luck story after Bojan Miovski’s penalty put the Dons ahead but debutant Keltjens headed home in the 78th minute to seal a 1-1 draw.

The 28-year-old January signing had been without a club since last season and Levein planned to remove him after an hour after starting him at wing-back.

“That was our intention but he was doing so well that I didn’t see any reason to take him off,” the saints boss said.

“David was excellent. He has hardly played any football at all for a long time and that was one of the considerations when we signed him. But he has played six times for Israel and he is a good age.

“It was just about whether he was capable of performing at the levels that we require and he more than did. He was steady, reliable and tough. To get the goal was the icing on the cake.”

Liam Gordon was twice on the end of VAR decisions – a disallowed goal and a penalty – which were far from clear and obvious to anyone inside McDiarmid Park, including Levein.

The Saints skipper was penalised for catching Jamie McGrath after the midfielder cleared only as far as Graham Carey, whose volley had squeezed inside the near post of Kelle Roos.

The defender was then ruled to have fouled Slobodan Rubezic following a Dons corner and referee John Beaton pointed to the spot after being called to his monitor for a second time by Steven Kirkland.

Levein, who felt his side deserved “at least a point”, said: “I haven’t seen any of the incidents. The boys said Gordy caught somebody for their penalty so that was fair enough. I don’t know what happened with their disallowed goal. I will wait and see.

“It was a bit of a palaver to be honest. It does seem there is a lot of time taken to make decisions and if every decision was correct then I would be happy for them to spend as much time as they want.

“But when you have human beings involved, there is always a chance there is going to be errors. I’m not saying there was tonight because I don’t know.”

Aberdeen missed the chance to move into the cinch Premiership top six and manager Barry Robson felt his side paid the price for poor game management.

“It was disappointing, when you are 1-0 up with 15 minutes to go, you are hoping to go on and win the game,” said Robson, who lost Rubezic late on to a knee injury which will require a scan.

“When the opposition is coming at you and they will come at you, you have to be calm and use your experience. You get your distances right, stop crosses coming into the box and when the ball does come in the box, you win your headers.

“We never did that well enough in the last 15 minutes.”

Aberdeen boss Barry Robson was in bullish mood after his side came from behind to overcome Livingston 2-1 in the cinch Premiership.

The Dons had to do it the hard way after falling behind to Kurtis Guthrie’s close-range finish – a strike that ended a seven-game goalless streak for the rock-bottom visitors.

Bojan Miovski headed in an equaliser before the interval and, after seeing another strike chalked off for offside, the North Macedonia striker turned home a low cross from Luis ‘Duk’ Lopes to earn his side a second successive league win.

Aberdeen’s response after Sunday’s League Cup final defeat to Rangers impressed their manager, who has seen his side win three of their last four matches in all competitions having previously endured a six-game winless run.

Robson said: “It’s difficult to come out after a game of the magnitude of the Viaplay Cup final and I was a wee bit concerned, but it shows that the boys are together.

“I think we started probably a bit slowly, and there wasn’t much in the first half. We showed resilience after going behind, and grew into the game.

“Bojan scored two great goals and I think he could have scored one or two more in the end.

“We always knew November and December would be tough months. We need to get our heads down and pick up the points to get us up the table.

“We look at every game as being really difficult. We’ve come through a lot of tough games and it’s not easy at any Scottish Premier League ground.”

Livingston manager David Martindale felt Aberdeen’s quality in attack was the difference between the two sides.

“The top end of the park is the difference tonight,” he said.

“We’ve got to do better at both of his goals, but I don’t think there was anything in the game.

“We felt pretty comfortable and the game plan was working. Aberdeen changed their shape which hurt us, but we’ve got to do better with those goals.

“They’re cracking finishes, and for me he’s one of the best strikers in the league.

“Kurtis Guthrie was very, very good tonight, but the ones in and around him need to take a bit more responsibility.

“Unfortunately I can’t afford players like Miovski.”

Bojan Miovski scored twice as Aberdeen came from behind to beat Livingston 2-1 and pick up a valuable three points in the cinch Premiership.

Livingston had failed to score in their previous seven matches, but ended that run as Kurtis Guthrie turned home from close range.

But Miovski netted either a goal in each half to earn the hosts a second successive league win, which moved them eight points clear of their rock-bottom opponents.

The Dons – looking to move on quickly from Sunday’s League Cup final defeat to Rangers – had the first effort of the match, but American midfielder Dante Polvara curled narrowly over the crossbar from 20 yards.

Livi responded strongly, with Jamie Brandon’s deep cross finding the head of Joel Nouble at the back post, but Kelle Roos was untroubled in the Aberdeen goal.

Aberdeen went closer when Graeme Shinnie’s low shot from range seemed to squirt off the Pittodrie turf and came back off the inside of the post before rolling away for a goal-kick.

But they were shocked in the 28th minute when Livingston ended what had been a seven-game scoreless streak.

The Dons defence failed to deal with a deep throw-in, allowing Ayo Obileye to turn the ball back across goal where Guthrie was perfectly placed to turn home from close range.

They could have been 2-0 ahead 10 minutes later as Scott Pittman turned neatly before firing towards goal, but Roos was equal to the effort.

Aberdeen hauled themselves level three minutes from the interval.

A patient move saw them work their way up the right flank, before Nicky Devlin whipped in a cross and Miovski powered a header past Shamal George in the Livi goal.

George was beaten again on the stroke of half-time as Miovski turned home a neat poacher’s effort after a free-kick from the right, but an offside flag ruled the goal out.

Aberdeen started the second period at a greater tempo, and Richard Jensen saw an effort from distance comfortably held by George.

James McGarry was also denied by the Livingston keeper before Miovski netted his second in the 65th minute.

Luis ‘Duk’ Lopes twisted and turned on the left before drilling a low ball to the near post, where Miovski got in front of his man to turn home his 14th goal of the campaign.

Livi threatened to draw level through former Don Bruce Anderson, just two minutes after coming off the bench, but the striker placed his shot narrowly wide of the post with only Roos to beat.

And at the other end, Miovski was unlucky not to add a third for the home side with a neat flick that was well saved by George.

Aberdeen top goalscorer Bojan Miovski remains at the centre of a fitness concern ahead of the Viaplay Cup final on Sunday.

Manager Barry Robson has not ruled the striker out of Thursday’s Europa Conference League game against Eintracht Frankfurt at Pittodrie. He played 77 minutes of Saturday’s 2-1 win over Hearts, scoring his 12th goal of the season.

But with no chance of qualifying for the knockout stages and silverware at stake against Rangers on Sunday, it appears inconceivable that the North Macedonia international would be risked against the German outfit.

Robson said: “We are still waiting on Bojan. We will see how he is in the morning when he gets up. Hopefully nothing too serious but we will make a decision on him on Thursday.

“It’s a hamstring issue. We will try to give him every opportunity. It’s not a serious injury. It’s not going to hold him back long term. It’s hours and days rather than weeks so we will see how he is in the morning.”

Robson made eight changes for the recent draw with HJK Helsinki and he looks set to shuffle his pack for the final European tie.

“We have a group of players who I believe in,” he said. “We need to make sure we use as many players as we can in a squad.

“In Helsinki, we took some players in and they performed really well. We just have to make sure as a squad we perform well over the next two games.

“As staff and manager that’s what we are trying to do, to make everyone as fresh as we can for the two games.”

While Robson is planning ahead for Sunday, he is keen to ensure his players are not thinking of Hampden.

“Listen, it’s not in my mind,” he said. “You are playing against Eintracht Frankfurt, one of the great sides in European football. So me and the players have to fully focus on that.

“We are not naive enough to think we don’t have to perform, because this is a big game, against some top players, so we have to be at our best.”

Midfielder Dante Polvara is eager to make the most of the chance to face the 2021 Europa League winners.

“It’s a chance to play for the club and for a lot of people to show what they can do,” he said.

“I will be just as excited for Thursday as I will be for Sunday. Of course Sunday holds other weight with us not being able to advance on Thursday but it’s going to be a privelege to play here and play against Frankfurt.

“You always want to impress no matter the occasion and even more so playing in a European game. It is a huge privilege and going toe to toe with the really big boys is an honour and something I am really excited for.

“And I am sure individually a lot of boys will be looking forward to showing what they can bring to the table.”

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