Hamill (78, OG)
1 - 1
Aberdeen 1-1 Hearts
Ryan Stevenson's second half header helped Hearts secure a share of the spoils as they drew 1-1 with Aberdeen in the final game of the season.
Stevenson's header on the hour mark put the Jambos in front, but a Jamie Hamill own goal resulted in a point a piece at Pittodrie. It was a fair reflection of an evenly matched tie which saw Captain Marius Zaliukas make what is likley to be his final appearance for the club.
Hearts made three changes ahead of their final game of the season, with Dylan McGowan, Dale Carrick and David Smith introduced to the starting eleven. The latter two lined up on their respective flanks, with Michael Ngoo spearheading the Maroon attack.
Heavy rain made for a slippery surface at Pittodrie and Andy Webster was caught out inside three minutes as he midsjudged a long ball, enabling Josh Magennis to break clear and lift the ball over Jamie Macdonald. Dylan McGowan was alert, however, and managed to hook the ball clear of the goal line.
It was the first of several opportunies for the homeside in a half which they controlled for large periods, as the Jambos struggled
Cameron Smith flashed a header wide from close range on 12 minutes, whilst both Niall McGinn and Jonny Hayes put Macdonald to the test on several occasions.
Maroon attacks were few and far between, with the best chance falling to Jason Holt whose deflected cross nearly caught Jamie Langfield off guard at the near post.
Magennis then forced a spectactular reflex save from Macdonald on 38 minutes, having latched on to a teasing cross from the left, but his effort from four yards out was tipped over by the keeper.
To their credit, Hearts improved after the restart and stifled much of the Dons' attacking play. None the less, Macdonald was on hand yet again as he tipped a close range shot from Smith over the bar on 56 minutes.
On the hour mark, however, the Jam Tarts duly took the lead against the run of play. Smith's pin-point corner from the right was met by the head of Stevenson who leap to steer the ball into the top left corner.
Both Hayes and substitute Declan McManus then went close as the home side searched for an equaliser, but man of the match Jamie Macdonald was looking unbeatable.
On 77 minutes, however, the Maroon goal was eventually breached, albeit due to a Hamill on goal. The Dons worked their way in from the right and as Hamill inadvertently sent the ball into the back of the net as he looked to clear the cross from the right.
The Dons upped the tempo following the leveller but couldn't carve out any further clear cut opportunities. For the travelling Maroon support, the undoubted highlight of the final ten minutes was the apperance of Zaliukas whom returned from a lengthy injury to bid what looks to be an emotional farewell to the fans.
The Lithuanian, who famously Captained the side to last season's Scottish Cup Final demolition of Hibs, handed his boots and shirt to the supporters at full time as they offered him a standing ovation.
1-1 was ultimately a fair result on the final day of what has been another eventful and dramatic season in Gorgie.
Aberdeen: Langfield; Robertson, Obsourne, Reynolds, Shaughnessy; Magennis (Vernon 71), Rae (Masson 84), Low, Hayes; McGinn, Smith (McManus 62). Subs not used: Twardzik, Hughes, Murray, Storie.
Hearts: Macdonald; Hamill, McGowan, Webster, McHattie; Carrick (Walker 74), Holt, Stevenson (Zaliukas 82), Taouil, D.Smith; Ngoo (Sutton 86). Subs not used: Ridgers, McGhee, McKay, B.King.
Referee: Crawford Allan
Top man: Jamie Macdonald
Today on HeartsTV - post-match reaction from Gary Locke.
Secure subscription areaClose