Match ends, St. Mirren 0, Aberdeen 2.
Aberdeen re-established a four-point lead at the top of the Premiership with victory over St Mirren.
With second-placed Celtic not in action, the Dons took full advantage as goals from Niall McGinn and Shay Logan gave them the points.
St Mirren had the better of the opening half-hour but were undone by two goals in the space of three minutes.
The victory extends Aberdeen's winning run in the league to eight matches, but St Mirren now sit bottom of the table.
The odds were stacked against St Mirren before the game even kicked off. They had not won at home, or kept a clean sheet, all season, while Aberdeen arrived on the back of seven straight league victories.
It was St Mirren who started the more brightly however, passing the ball cleanly and accurately, and dominating much of the early possession.
Flaws were still evident, though, especially in the final third. The lack of a true forward meant that St Mirren were restricted to long-range efforts. Kenny McLean and John McGinn both prompted saves from Scott Brown, and the Aberdeen goalkeeper coped with them assuredly.
Even not operating at their most domineering, the visitors were still capable of breaking with incisiveness, pace and power. When the excellent Ryan Jack robbed McGinn of possession, he smartly released Adam Rooney, but Marc Ridgers parried the shot. The ball was soon worked back to Niall McGinn, but the St Mirren goalkeeper was able to block again.
The forward would have been frustrated, but he was soon sheepishly celebrating. An attack culminated in McGinn curling an in-swinging cross towards the back post. The ball was carried in the wind, but also missed by all of the players inside the area, and it slipped inside the post, leaving Ridgers looking bemused.
St Mirren would have felt that it was a wretched moment of misfortune, but they were too psychologically fragile to respond. Instead, they found themselves further behind just two minutes later. Again the ball was crossed from the left, but on this occasion Johnny Hayes shaped it cleverly towards Logan racing in at the back post, and the full-back stabbed it past Ridgers.
The forlorn mood would have felt familiar to St Mirren. Even so, they were not wholly subdued and McLean was furious with himself for not being accurate enough as he side-footed a volley at goal from Stephen Mallan's delivery. McLean remains the most accomplished player in the St Mirren squad, but his technical aplomb is not accompanied by a clinical edge and playing up front is out of necessity rather than design.
Aberdeen felt comfortable and could have added to their lead. First Rooney failed to properly connect with a clever Hayes free-kick and so missed a clear chance while unmarked at close range. Then Andrew Considine sent his header from a corner straight at Ridgers.
Even when the finishes were more decisive, McGinn saw his hooked volley tipped away by Ridgers, while the substitute Lawrence Shankland saw his effort smack off the crossbar late on.
- 13OsbourneBooked at 64minsSubstituted forReillyat 87'minutes
- 32MclearSubstituted forMorganat 71'minutes
- 11WyldeSubstituted forBallat 71'minutes
- 16PawlettSubstituted forSmithat 82'minutes
- 17GoodwillieSubstituted forRobsonat 82'minutes
- 9RooneySubstituted forShanklandat 84'minutes
- Steven McLean
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, St. Mirren 0, Aberdeen 2.
Attempt missed. Sean Kelly (St. Mirren) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.
Corner, Aberdeen. Conceded by Jeroen Tesselaar.
Lawrence Shankland (Aberdeen) hits the bar with a right footed shot from very close range.
Jim Goodwin (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Barry Robson (Aberdeen).
Substitution, St. Mirren. Thomas Reilly replaces Isaac Osbourne.
Attempt missed. Kenny McLean (St. Mirren) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.
Attempt saved. Kenny McLean (St. Mirren) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.
Sean Kelly (St. Mirren) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Foul by Lawrence Shankland (Aberdeen).
Substitution, Aberdeen. Lawrence Shankland replaces Adam Rooney.
Attempt missed. Callum Ball (St. Mirren) header from the centre of the box is just a bit too high.
Substitution, Aberdeen. Cameron Smith replaces Peter Pawlett.
Substitution, Aberdeen. Barry Robson replaces David Goodwillie.
Attempt blocked. Andrew Considine (Aberdeen) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.
Corner, Aberdeen. Conceded by Mark Ridgers.
Attempt saved. Niall McGinn (Aberdeen) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.
John McGinn (St. Mirren) wins a free kick in the attacking half.