Aberdeen became the first team to book their place in tomorrow’s fifth round draw for the William Hill Scottish Cup as they beat Championship leaders St Mirren 4-1 at Pittodrie.
A Ryan Christie double and an Adam Rooney penalty set the Dons on their way by half-time with Gary Mackay-Steven’s superb strike securing victory for Aberdeen. Gavin Reilly scored for Saints.
Aberdeen defender Scott McKenna missed out due to suspension following his red card in the competition last season against Hibernian while he was on loan at Ayr United.
New signing Niall McGinn was on the bench following his return to the club in December while fit-again Stevie May was also named among the substitutes.
Former Don Cammy Smith was in the Saints starting line-up.
The Saints looked lively in the opening exchanges but from Aberdeen’s first foray forward the Dons took the lead as Greg Stewart was tripped in the box by Stelios Demetriou for a penalty.
Striker Adam Rooney made no mistake from the spot, sending Craig Samson the wrong way to put the Dons in front.
It was a nightmare start for the Championship side and it got worse as Aberdeen doubled their lead in the 17th minute through Ryan Christie, the midfielder running on to Gary Mackay-Steven’s cutback to fire past Samson.
It looked grim for the Buddies but they hauled themselves back in the game in the 25th minute when Joe Lewis parried a fierce Lewis Morgan shot into the path of Gavin Reilly who converted the rebound.
The Dons were stunned but they regained their two-goal advantage quickly when Christie grabbed his second of the game with a close range header from a Shay Logan cross.
Aberdeen ended the visitors’ hopes of getting back into the game two minutes into the second half when Mackay-Steven beat Samson with a fabulous angled drive from the edge of the box.