Aberdeen hit back against HJK to earn first Conference League point

Bojan Miovski scored in the second half of a hard-fought match at Pittodrie.

Aberdeen hit back against HJK to earn first point of Conference League campaign SNS Group

Aberdeen came from behind to rescue a point against HJK Helsinki in the Europa Conference League at Pittodrie.

Despite creating the best opportunities in a cagey contest, the hosts fell behind just before the hour mark through Bojan Radulovic’s strike.

However, a fine header from Bojan Miovski saw the Dons get off the mark in Group G following their opening-match defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt a fortnight ago.

Aberdeen could have been ahead in the 11th minute when Richard Jensen found space to get on the end of Leighton Clarkson’s corner but he was unable to direct his header on target from 10 yards out.

As the Dons continue to press in the early stages, HJK goalkeeper Jesse Ost came to the visitors’ rescue in the 21st minute. Stefan Gartenmann clipped a precise pass on to the head of Luis ‘Duk’ Lopes, whose glancing effort was well saved by Ost.

Having won their last three matches in all competitions, the home team looked confident and Miovski flashed a header wide from another Gartenmann centre in the 27th minute.

But two lengthy stoppages for nasty head wounds sustained by Duk and Jensen resulted in Barry Robson’s men losing some of their momentum in the run up to half-time, the latter temporarily leaving the field of play so a huge gash above his eye could be stitched up.

Early in the second half, Jamie McGrath was presented with a decent opportunity after Miovski and Clarkson combined but the Irishman, who netted in the Reds’ 3-1 against Rangers at Ibrox last weekend, shot wide from 12 yards.

However, the Finnish side offered threats of their own and Tuomas Ollila delivered an excellent low cross across the six-yard box which ought to have been snapped up by a team-mate.

That served as a warning for the Dons, who fell behind in the 59th minute. Pyry Soiri’s cutback from the right flank was swept high into the net by Radulovic from 10 yards.

Miovski should have levelled in the 71st minute when he was picked out by substitute Connor Barron but his volley down into the ground was turned behind by Ost.

But the North Macedonia international made amends in the 79th minute with a precision header to make it 1-1. Jonny Hayes, who was effective off the bench, saw his cross flicked on by Miro Tenho and Miovski superbly glanced the ball into the bottom corner.

Duk then wasted a great chance to score the winner moments later when he chased down a long punt forward only to see his shot saved by Ost as the teams shared the points.

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