Scottish Premiership
St JohnstoneSt Johnstone3AberdeenAberdeen4

Scottish Premiership: St Johnstone 3-4 Aberdeen

By John BarnesBBC Scotland

Aberdeen moved equal on points with Celtic at the top of the Premiership with Adam Rooney scoring twice in a hard-fought win over St Johnstone.

It looked as though it would be a comfortable win after Rooney and Peter Pawlett gave them the half-time lead.

David Wotherspoon pulled a goal back for Saints early in the second half before Niall McGinn and Rooney again stretched the visitors' lead.

However, Steven Anderson and Tam Scobbie scored in a late Saints rally.

There was to be no late equaliser as Derek McInnes's side extended their run to 12 league games unbeaten, while Tommy Wright's men have now gone eight matches without a victory.

An injury to Andy Considine in the warm-up led to Mark Reynolds being promoted from the bench prior to kick-off, which meant the Dons started with the same back four that began the midweek win over Celtic.

However, it was the re-jigged Saints defence that was troubled as early as the fifth minute when Cammy Smith's neat pass picked out Shay Logan just inside the box.

The full-back delivered a low cross to the back post, where Rooney pounced to slot home his 11th goal in his past 15 appearances.

St Johnstone almost got a quick equaliser from a well-worked corner that fell to Scobbie at the edge of the area and the defender's left-foot volley bounced back off Scott Brown's left-hand post.

Aberdeen's Peter Pawlett is congratulated by Jonny Hayes
Peter Pawlett (left) added Aberdeen's second goal before half-time in Perth

Liam Craig was booked for hauling down Graeme Shinnie as he ran at the Saints defence after breaking up play in the midfield, but that was not the only punishment for the home side.

The resultant free-kick was taken by Pawlett and he struck it from 26 yards with the aid of what looked like a slight deflection into the corner of the net.

Saints came close just before the interval when Graham Cummins was clean through, but his touch took him wide of goal as well as the goalkeeper and, from an acute angle, his effort crept inches wide of the post.

The home side began the second half in positive fashion and only a goal-line clearance from Shinnie prevented Scobbie, with a right-foot lob, pulling a goal back.

A goal did materialise for Saints after fine footwork on the edge of the area by Steven MacLean, whose reverse pass found Wotherspoon for a composed finished that breathed hope into the home side.

Rooney twice went close before McGinn restored the two-goal lead when Simon Church took advantage of poor defending and set up the substitute for is ninth goal of the season.

The home defence were culpable again as Rooney easily shrugged off a couple of challenges to fire his second of the match.

However, Anderson out-jumped everyone at the back post to head home Craig's corner and, one minute from the end, Scobbie's shot sailed through a ruck of players.

Line-ups

St Johnstone

  • 1Mannus
  • 14Shaughnessy
  • 22Fisher
  • 6Anderson
  • 3Scobbie
  • 16SwansonBooked at 69minsSubstituted forLappinat 87'minutes
  • 7MillarSubstituted forThomsonat 83'minutes
  • 26CraigBooked at 20mins
  • 10Wotherspoon
  • 9MacLeanSubstituted forKaneat 70'minutes
  • 18Cummins

Substitutes

  • 4Lappin
  • 5Doyle
  • 11Sutton
  • 12Clark
  • 25Kane
  • 27Thomson
  • 36Gordon

Aberdeen

  • 20Brown
  • 2LoganBooked at 29mins
  • 5Taylor
  • 6ReynoldsBooked at 84mins
  • 3Shinnie
  • 16PawlettSubstituted forMcGinnat 60'minutes
  • 7McLean
  • 11Hayes
  • 14SmithBooked at 32minsSubstituted forStorieat 60'minutes
  • 9Rooney
  • 18ChurchSubstituted forMcKennaat 88'minutes

Substitutes

  • 10McGinn
  • 15Robson
  • 19Collin
  • 23Storie
  • 26McKenna
  • 27Wright
  • 31Ross
Referee:
Don Robertson
Attendance:
5,712

Match Stats

Home TeamSt JohnstoneAway TeamAberdeen
Possession
Home48%
Away52%
Shots
Home4
Away7
Shots on Target
Home3
Away4
Corners
Home6
Away6
Fouls
Home7
Away16

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, St. Johnstone 3, Aberdeen 4.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, St. Johnstone 3, Aberdeen 4.

  3. Post update

    Liam Craig (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  4. Post update

    Foul by Graeme Shinnie (Aberdeen).

  5. Goal!

    Goal! St. Johnstone 3, Aberdeen 4. Tam Scobbie (St. Johnstone) left footed shot from outside the box to the bottom right corner.

  6. Post update

    Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Ash Taylor.

  7. Substitution

    Substitution, Aberdeen. Scott McKenna replaces Simon Church.

  8. Substitution

    Substitution, St. Johnstone. Simon Lappin replaces Danny Swanson.

  9. Post update

    (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  10. Post update

    Foul by Ash Taylor (Aberdeen).

  11. Post update

    Corner, Aberdeen. Conceded by Tam Scobbie.

  12. Booking

    Mark Reynolds (Aberdeen) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  13. Post update

    Christopher Kane (St. Johnstone) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  14. Post update

    Foul by Mark Reynolds (Aberdeen).

  15. Substitution

    Substitution, St. Johnstone. Craig Thomson replaces Chris Millar.

  16. Post update

    Corner, Aberdeen. Conceded by Tam Scobbie.

  17. Goal!

    Goal! St. Johnstone 2, Aberdeen 4. Steven Anderson (St. Johnstone) header from the left side of the six yard box to the bottom right corner following a corner.

  18. Post update

    Corner, St. Johnstone. Conceded by Graeme Shinnie.

  19. Goal!

    Goal! St. Johnstone 1, Aberdeen 4. Adam Rooney (Aberdeen) left footed shot from a difficult angle on the left to the bottom right corner.

  20. Post update

    Attempt missed. Niall McGinn (Aberdeen) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left.

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Celtic24174364214355
2Aberdeen25174444261855
3Hearts23118442241841
4Ross County24103114037333
5St Johnstone239593938132
6Dundee247983741-430
7Inverness CT237883032-229
8Partick Thistle237792228-628
9Hamilton2577113045-1528
10Motherwell2475122639-1326
11Kilmarnock2566132748-2124
12Dundee Utd2334162446-2213
View full Scottish Premiership table

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