Aberdeen have Livi 'keeper to thank for three points as former player given harsh treatment from fans
This was the first time in a long, long while that the Red Army had travelled in numbers. They were not about to give each other space as a large group took part in a good old fashioned pitch invasion after Max Stryjek’s horror moment gifted the visitors a 2-1 win.
Even more painfully for the Livingston ‘keeper, it occurred right under the noses of an Aberdeen support itching to enjoy themselves. Indeed, each of the three goals were scored at the away end of the ground. Initially this was a matter of regret for the 900 or so who made the journey south from the Granite city.
Their enthusiasm for travelling en masse again drained away somewhat when they saw their former player Bruce Anderson back-header in the opener and then celebrate in front of them.
Things improved markedly in the second half. The floodlights blinked on at half-time on this summer’s afternoon. The dark clouds started to empty their contents on the stadium and tackles began to get tastier. This was not the limit of the rain’s consequences.
The wet ball slipped from Styjek’s grasp as he attempted to field MacKenzie’s 20-yard effort in the final moments of the match. The left back was shown inside, probably with the expectation that his right foot is not as strong as his left. He would agree with that assessment but full marks to the 21-year-old for trying his luck. He was quickly lost amid the ruck of celebrating Aberdeen players and supporters.
He was not the only member of his side to score a first senior goal. Teddy Jenks, on loan from Brighton & Hove Albion, invited James Maddison comparisons on a promising debut that was further distinguished by the equaliser three minutes after half-time. His shot from the edge of the box squeezed into the bottom corner after Niall McGinn’s cross was only partially cleared.
Have Aberdeen found a new hero in Jenks? Perhaps. But it’s a new “old” hero who again proved his worth here. One of six changes made by Stephen Glass following Thursday night’s European exertions in Iceland, Scott Brown entered the fray three minutes before half-time and with Aberdeen already toiling.
Anderson opened his Livingston account against his former club. Pushed out on loan last season to Hamilton Accies and released altogether by Glass, Anderson probably feels he does not owe Aberdeen much at all. The way he celebrated after beating Lewis to a header back into the box ten minutes before half-time certainly suggested that.
There was little attempt to tone things down. And why should he? It was, after all, the first goal of the rest of his post-Aberdeen career.
Brown came on for the limping Hayes just a few minutes later for his fifth competitive outing in red and white. The fans have already taken to him. “Broonie, Broonie!” they chanted and then, when he was involved in a spat in the second half with Anderson, these same supporters flayed the local boy-turned supposed-villain: “Reject, reject, get tae f*ck!” they bayed, harshly.
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