Sub Adam Rooney hits late winner as Aberdeen edge thriller at Partick Thistle
Substitute Adam Rooney’s late strike continued Aberdeen’s winning start to the Scottish Premiership season in a seven-goal thriller at Partick Thistle.
The Dons took the lead through Ryan Christie but found themselves behind through strikes from Chris Erskine and Kris Doolan. Kenny McLean controversially equalised from the spot for the visitors before a stunning strike from Scott Wright put them ahead.
Niall Keown restored parity again with a downward header but Rooney had the final say, securing a 4-3 triumph with a header of his own. Keown was sent off for a second yellow before the end for the hosts.
The result made it four wins from four games for the table-topping Dons this term, and left Thistle still to get off the mark.
Jags boss Alan Archibald conceded before the game his side were notoriously bad starters after losing their first three games of the campaign.
They soon found themselves behind in this encounter when Christie latched on to Shay Logan’s pass and fired low past goalkeeper Tomas Cerny.
Thistle responded almost immediately and levelled the scores on eight minutes when Erskine collected Blair Spittal’s pass and slid a low shot into the corner for his 50th Thistle strike.
They were galvanised by that equaliser and took the lead on 13 minutes in a frantic start at Firhill.
Spittal’s corner was whipped in with pace and the ball cannoned off McLean – goalkeeper Joe Lewis reacted well to save – but Doolan showed his predatory instincts to bundle home from the rebound.
There was a hint of controversy around Aberdeen’s equaliser on 42 minutes.
There looked to be minimal contact when Stuart Bannigan was adjudged to have brought down Christie in the box, but referee Bobby Madden pointed to the spot and McLean made no mistake to level the scores.
Aberdeen regained the lead after the break with a brilliant goal from Wright.
The striker, who scored a hat-trick here in May, curled an exquisite right-footed shot from 25 yards into the top corner .
However, Thistle refused to buckle and from Spittal’s corner Keown restored parity again on 54 minutes, taking advantage of some poor defending with a downward header..
Derek McInnes’ side were not to be denied the win, though, as substitute Rooney’s glancing header from Christie’s delivery evaded Cerny and nestled in the back of the net on 84 minutes
The home fans’ disappointment was compounded when Keown was shown a second yellow for taking out McLean on the counter in stoppage time.