Aberdeen 2 Hibernian U12's 2

Last updated : 21 April 2007 By Footymad Previewer
A youthful Hibernian side showing eight changes from last Saturday's cup semi-final tie against Dunfermline further dented Aberdeen's hopes of European football next season.

They fully deserved a share of the spoils in a 2-2 draw, but Aberdeen boss Jimmy Calderwood will again be concerned about the individual errors made by his defence which gifted the visitors both of their goals.

Aberdeen looked very nervy during the opening exchanges with even the simplest of passes often going astray.

Hibs' lively youngsters deservedly opened the scoring after 19 minutes.

A long ball out of defence from Chris Hogg saw Andrew Considine make a complete hash of his pass-back which left James Langfield hopelessly exposed.

Debutant Damon Gray showed great composure to skip past the keeper and roll the ball into the empty net.

Aberdeen huffed and puffed but never seriously troubled the visitors rearguard after the early setback as it looked to have drained their confidence.

On 25 minutes, a clever knock-down by Craig Brewster fell to Jamie Smith, who took the ball on his chest before smashing in a tremendous volley from 25 yards which was brilliantly turned over the crossbar by Andrew McNeil.

From the resulting corner, the Hibs centre-backs went missing and allowed Dons skipper Russell Anderson to bullet his header home unchallenged from 10 yards.

Aberdeen's defence was again exposed when the visitors scored a very soft goal right on the stroke of half-time.

A Merouane Zemmama through ball was easily picked up by Dean Shiels, who rounded Langfield before knocking the ball home from the tightest of angles.

Aberdeen looked to have been thrown a lifeline on 48 minutes when Darren Mackie was felled by McNeil inside the area as the Dons striker raced on to a clever Brewster knock-down.

However, the visiting keeper redeemed himself, diving low to his left to brilliantly parry Mackie's effort with Hogg completing the clearance.

Hibs task of holding on to all three points wasn't helped minutes later when Sean Lynch went in high and late on Chris Clark leaving referee Stewart Dougal little alternative but to show the midfielder a straight red card.

The Dons persistence finally paid off on 80 minutes. A short free-kick from Scott Severin allowed Richard Foster to advance a few yards before he unleashed a tremendous shot from 30 yards which flew into the net leaving McNeil with no chance of making a save.

As the game became even more frantic in the closing minutes, Hibs were reduced to nine men when Dermott McCaffrey received his second yellow card for a late lunge on Anderson.