Scottish Premiership
Ross CountyRoss County2AberdeenAberdeen0

Ross County 2-0 Aberdeen

By Scott DavieBBC Scotland at Victoria Park
Brian Graham
Brian Graham opened the scoring for Ross County

Ross County moved into third in the Premiership as leaders Aberdeen lost their third straight league game.

Brian Graham put the hosts ahead after Paul Quinn's challenge on Ricky Foster only pushed the ball into his path.

He doubled the lead with another Quinn assist, the Dons defender misjudging the flight of the ball and heading to Graham to finish past Danny Ward.

Niall McGinn hit a post for Aberdeen and Adam Rooney was twice denied, but they were well beaten in Dingwall.

The result means champions Celtic can go top with a draw against Motherwell at Fir Park on Saturday.

Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes made four changes to the team thumped 5-1 by St Johnstone before the international break.

But they did not look too sure at the back in the early exchanges as Ross County threatened through Ricky Foster on the left and the in-form Liam Boyce down the middle.

Boyce twice twisted clear in the visitors' penalty area but produced shots that failed to test Ward.

At the other end, David Goodwillie, preferred up front to Adam Rooney, looked lively and went close with an audacious overhead kick before hitting a left-foot shot across the face of Gary Woods' goal.

It was a game played at a really high tempo with the Staggies looking the more dangerous side - as they showed when Graeme Shinnie was forced to block an Andrew Davies header on the goal-line after 23 minutes.

Foster and Boyce combined, the former picking out the latter with a diagonal cross from deep. His header was a textbook effort towards the bottom right-hand corner, but Ward pulled off an impressive diving save.

Brian Graham (right) pounces to put Ross County 1-0 up before half-time
Brian Graham (right) pounces to put Ross County 1-0 up before half-time

However, there was not much the man on loan from Liverpool could do to prevent the home side finally taking the lead.

Foster dribbled into the Aberdeen penalty area then seemed to lose his way, but the ball broke into the path of Graham, who clipped in his first league goal for County.

Aberdeen resumed after half-time in a positive manner, but they were hit by a counter-attack goal minutes into the second period.

Boyce beat Ash Taylor to flick a header on and Quinn misjudged the flight of the ball. That allowed Graham to run through on goal and finish at the second attempt.

McGinn was then denied by the post for the visitors, with Rooney having his shot from the rebound cleared off the line by Jamie Reckord.

If that was a let-off for Woods then the County goalkeeper played a significant part in maintaining their two-goal advantage with a brilliant save to deny Rooney.

At the other end, Boyce continued to have a miserable night in front of goal - shooting over the bar when it looked easier to hit the target - then mis-hit a shot when clean through on goal.

He was eventually substituted to give Dutch signing Alex Schalk a brief run-out along with the fit-again Craig Curran on a night with plenty positives for McIntyre.

Line-ups

Ross County

Formation 4-4-2

  • 21Woods
  • 2Fraser
  • 15Davies
  • 6Robertson
  • 3Reckord
  • 7GardyneSubstituted forFranksat 76'minutes
  • 36Irvine
  • 18Murdoch
  • 12Foster
  • 10BoyceSubstituted forSchalkat 85'minutes
  • 9GrahamSubstituted forCurranat 65'minutesBooked at 90mins

Substitutes

  • 5Boyd
  • 8McShane
  • 11Curran
  • 17Franks
  • 23Schalk
  • 24De Vita
  • 31Severn

Aberdeen

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 19Ward
  • 18Quinn
  • 6ReynoldsSubstituted forRooneyat 45'minutes
  • 5Taylor
  • 4Considine
  • 8FloodSubstituted forLoganat 45'minutes
  • 3Shinnie
  • 10McGinn
  • 7McLean
  • 11Hayes
  • 17GoodwillieSubstituted forParkerat 82'minutes

Substitutes

  • 2Logan
  • 9Rooney
  • 14Smith
  • 15Robson
  • 20Brown
  • 21McLaughlin
  • 32Parker
Referee:
Craig Thomson
Attendance:
5,543

Match Stats

Home TeamRoss CountyAway TeamAberdeen
Possession
Home46%
Away54%
Shots
Home13
Away13
Shots on Target
Home8
Away4
Corners
Home3
Away4
Fouls
Home14
Away5

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Ross County 2, Aberdeen 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Ross County 2, Aberdeen 0.

  3. Post update

    Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Andrew Considine.

  4. Post update

    Attempt saved. Alex Schalk (Ross County) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

  5. Booking

    Craig Curran (Ross County) is shown the yellow card.

  6. Post update

    Foul by Paul Quinn (Aberdeen).

  7. Post update

    Craig Curran (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  8. Substitution

    Substitution, Ross County. Alex Schalk replaces Liam Boyce.

  9. Post update

    Attempt missed. Niall McGinn (Aberdeen) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.

  10. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Niall McGinn (Aberdeen) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

  11. Substitution

    Substitution, Aberdeen. Josh Parker replaces David Goodwillie.

  12. Substitution

    Substitution, Ross County. Jonathan Franks replaces Michael Gardyne.

  13. Post update

    Ash Taylor (Aberdeen) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  14. Post update

    Foul by Craig Curran (Ross County).

  15. Post update

    Attempt saved. Adam Rooney (Aberdeen) right footed shot from very close range is saved in the centre of the goal.

  16. Post update

    Graeme Shinnie (Aberdeen) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  17. Post update

    Foul by Craig Curran (Ross County).

  18. Post update

    Corner, Aberdeen. Conceded by Richard Foster.

  19. Post update

    Paul Quinn (Aberdeen) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  20. Post update

    Foul by Craig Curran (Ross County).

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Aberdeen118031712524
2Celtic107212591623
3Ross County115331812618
4Hearts105231714317
5Hamilton105141412216
6Dundee104331618-215
7St Johnstone104242117414
8Inverness CT103431112-113
9Motherwell10316813-510
10Kilmarnock102351020-109
11Partick Thistle10136613-76
12Dundee Utd10127920-115
View full Scottish Premiership table

Top Stories