Date: 4th February 2006 at 11:23pm
Written by:

Aberdeen’s best chance of winning the Scottish Cup is over for another year,after this heavy defeat by Hearts
at Tynecastle today.

Both the Dons and Hearts knew before this match had kicked off,that Rangers had been knocked out of the competition,losing 3-0 at home(for the second time this season !)to Hibernian to make sure that their was no Old
Firm involvement in the competition at this stage for
the first time since 1987 when St.Mirren went on to win
the Cup that year.

Aberdeen’s performance in the first half was nothing short of shocking as Graham Rix’s men took the game by
the scruff of the neck and killed the tie off by half
time,such was their command of the match.

Graham Rix has been as busy as a woman in the January sales with all the new arrivals at Tynecastle over the
past few days and he was able to give debuts to winger
Mirsad Beslija and full back Jose Goncalves in his starting eleven today.

Belslija made his mark early on,when he gave away a free
kick after a foul .

This gave the Dons an early chance but Scott Severin headed straight at Gordon.

The Dons where having the best of the early exchanges and Gordon had to be on his toes again as Jamie Smith
forced him into action.

But it was to be the home side who would take the lead and what a goal it was !
Elliott crossed from the right and Pospisil got ahead of
Diamond to hit a great right foot volley past Langfield.

The Dons tried to get back on level terms and within minutes they should have had a penalty as Stevie Crawford
went through,Webster seemed to handle the ball and also
foul Crawford into the bargin,but nothing was given !
The Dons players and Management team were livid !

Moments later Hearts went 2-0 ahead.Great play by Cesnauskis to pull the ball back for Elliott to knock
the ball past Langfield .

Aberdeen’s first half ended on another low point as the Jambo’s were awarded a penalty for a foul on Pospisil which looked like Diamond had caught the Hearts player
outside the box ! But such was the Dons luck on the day,
bad though it already was,it was about to get even worse !

Before Steven Pressley wrapped the tie up from the spot,the Dons were down to 10 men as Diamond was given a
straight red card for the foul .

The half ended with Sandy Clark,already in trouble with the SFA,having words with referee Kenny Clark and he had to be lead away by the furious Dons players !

Try as they may the Dons could not get back in this tie and this mountain proved too much for the Dandy Dons.

Nicholson did come close as did Crawford but they could not get the goal their travelling support deserved.

They must now pick themselves up for the visit of fellow Scottish Cup victims Rangers who also lost 3-0 and come
to Pittodrie on Wednesday.

Although Hearts were the better team on the day,they do have one problem,with record signing,Mirsad Beslija having to be stretchered off after a challenge with
John Stewart.

For the Dons and their ten men,their Scottish Cup dream
is over !

Player Ratings

Jamie Langfield

Russell Anderson

Zander Diamond

Richard Foster

Danny Griffen

Kevin McNaughton

Chris Clark

Barry Nicholson

Jamie Smith

Stevie Crawford

Scott Severin
Stewart came on for Richie Foster 6
Macauley came on for Griffen 6
Snoyl came on for Smith in the 90th minute

Manager Rating
Jimmy Calderwood 6
All the stories about Derby wanting Jimmy may have unsettled him and the players in the build up to this match.

Opponent Rating
Graham Rix 9
Hearts look to be the favourites for the Cup

The Dons will need to lift themselves for the visit of Rangers but that match is the nearest to an Old Firm clash for the Dons,as both clubs have a history of bad blood between them,Pittodrie may not be a place for the faint hearted on Wednesday !