SPL: DUNFERMLINE 1 ABERDEEN 2: 26/12/98
Gerry Britton returned from an on loan month at Raith and Bert Paton put him straight into the side. George Shaw was in the starting line up and the possible saviour Edinho, was left on the bench yet again.
Conditions were pretty wild as Dunfermline attacked the goal in front of the away supporters, or at least those who managed to get in on time. The performance on the pitch is ably outstripped by amazingly poor stadium management where customer care is non existent. Some Aberdeen supporters missed the first twenty minutes play due to mayhem outside.
The first half was a fairly ordinary affair with 40 minutes passing before there was a shot on target- a header from Gerry Britton. A weak back pass by Craig Ireland had brought the first excitement as Butler just won the race for the ball.
In the first minute of the second half George Shaw almost converted a Stewart Petrie cross but his lunging header went just passed.
Then with 52 minutes gone John Inglis met a Jamie Buchan corner and the defender seemed isolated as the Dunfermline defence watched. The ball arrived at the back post, Scott McCulloch was rooted to the line and Lee Butler was slow to react, 1-0.
Then hopes were raised as within a minute the score was level again. Andy Smith laid the ball off to Gerry Britton who pushed it on to George Shaw. The wee man’s shot took a wicked deflection off Andy Dow and Derek Stillie could only watch the ball float into the net. George Shaw was yellow carded for his shirt removing celebrations - this must be two out of two for him at EEP.
Butler saved from Winters before the game was won by Eoin Jess in the 75th minute. With Dunfermline exposed following an attack, Jamie Squires failed to put the ball out of play on the far side but within the Aberdeen half. Robbie Winters broke fast as the ball came off him and sent Jess through for an easy conversion as the exposed Butler was left with no chance.
Only two victories in the last twenty two league matches. The year is drawing to a close and so too must be the Paton and Campbell era at East End Park. Dunfermline look like a side destined for the First Division. Chairman Roy Woodrow’s firm produces many soft drinks but and only refreshment on a strategic front is likely to iimprove things for his club.
DUNFERMLINE: Butler; Shields, Squires, Ireland, McCulloch;.Shaw, Huxford, French, Petrie; Britton (Edinho 82), Smith.
Subs not used: Westwater, Ferguson, Graham, Martin.
Yellow Cards: McCulloch (47), Shaw (53)
Scorer: Shaw (53)
Referee: Kenny Clark (Paisley)
League position: 10th and bottom by three clear points
Next match v St Johnstone (away) Tuesday 29th December 1998
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