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Dons U20s: The Official 2012/13 Thread

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Cowdenbeath v Aberdeen U20s


The Aberdeen Under 20s will travel down to Fife on Saturday for their first pre-season game and take on Cowdenbeath.


The side are managed by ex Scotland player Colin Cameron and will play in the Scottish First Division next season after getting promoted last season, so it will be a good test for Neil Cooper's young side. 


The Friendly will take place at Central Park, Cowdenbeath on Saturday 14th July.


Kick off is at 3.00pm


Admission charge is Adults £8 and concessions £4




As each season starts afresh, hope springs eternal that this is the season where the Dons get themselves back up to the right end of the table. But it's not all about the first team, for within the younger age groups at Pittodrie, youthful optimism is always the order of the day. We recently welcomed eight fresh recruits into Neil Cooper's U20 side, and to find out more about Aberdeen's stars of the future, we spoke to the man who discovered them, AFC Youth Academy Chief Scout Colin Grant.


"It is new adventure for eight different players. Two from Ireland, two from Edinburgh, two from Glasgow, one local lad and one from the North.


"Marcus Campanile and Zach Szemis have both arrived from our Edinburgh Centre. Marcus played a couple of trial games for us back at the beginning of the year, as did Zach. Both play with Edina Hibs in the juvenile league down in Edinburgh. Campanile is a midfielder and Szemis is a right back, who can play centre back as well. They showed up well in the trial games and then they came up here for the Easter week and everyone was impressed by them, their ability on the ball and the way they handled themselves.


"Scott Ferries is a right sided midfielder from Tain and has been in the system since he was 11 years old. He played for the pro youth 13s, 14s, 15s and 17s and obviously he is now going full time. Stuart Close is local lad who has been in our system for two years. Stuart, who is a centre half, went to Bucksburn Academy and as well as playing for the U17s last season he also featured at the tail end of last year's campaign in the U19 squad.


"Jamie Hamilton and Scott Macaulay are both from our Glasgow centre. Jamie can play wide left or wide right, he is an exciting player who can dribble with the ball. He is good with the ball at his feet. He creates havoc and has good pace. Scott is a goalkeeper was originally with Rangers. He has come to us as I have been watching him for a while. It was good to finally get our man so to speak.


"Alan O'Sullivan is a striker. He has been coming over from Dublin for about a year and a half now. He is an U15 and U16 Republic of Ireland International. Sean Hume I saw at the Galway Cup last year and brought him over a couple of times and he also impressed the coaches. Sean is a centre half.


"It brings the number of players from Ireland to eight. Josh Magennis and Niall McGinn both play for Northern Ireland and we have Jonny Hayes, Joe Shaughnessy, Matthew McMahon, Danny Rogers from the Republic as well Sean and Alan.


"There are more youth players playing football on a Sunday morning in Dublin that there is in the whole of Scotland. There are over 100,000 kids playing football in Dublin   :o so it is a hotbed of potential talent. I go across to the Galway and Foyle Cups and I also go to Limerick for the Kennedy Cup which is an U14 competition with all the best school boys. I have picked up a couple of goalkeepers who are now in the system. The quicker we can get players into the system the better."


width=249 height=212http://www.afc.co.uk/javaImages/18/61/0,,10284~11034904,00.jpg[/img]

Alan O'Sullivan 24/03/1995 Centre Forward Rep Ireland


width=249 height=212http://www.afc.co.uk/javaImages/14/61/0,,10284~11034900,00.jpg[/img]

Sean Hume 13/03/1996 Central Defence Rep Ireland


width=249 height=212http://www.afc.co.uk/javaImages/16/61/0,,10284~11034902,00.jpg[/img]

Scott Ferries 07/03/1996 Right Mid / Wing Scottish


width=249 height=212http://www.afc.co.uk/javaImages/15/61/0,,10284~11034901,00.jpg[/img]

Scott Macaulay 05/08/1995 Goalkeeper Scottish


width=249 height=212http://www.afc.co.uk/javaImages/17/61/0,,10284~11034903,00.jpg[/img]

Jamie Hamilton 06/07/1995 Right Mid / Wing Scottish

width=249 height=212http://www.afc.co.uk/javaImages/1a/61/0,,10284~11034906,00.jpg[/img]

Marcus Campanile 16/03/1996 Centre Midfield Scottish


width=249 height=212http://www.afc.co.uk/javaImages/12/61/0,,10284~11034898,00.jpg[/img]

Zach Szemis 13/05/1996 Right Back / Central Defence Scottish


width=249 height=212http://www.afc.co.uk/javaImages/13/61/0,,10284~11034899,00.jpg[/img]

Stuart Close 06/11/1995 Central Defence Scottish

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Marcus Campanile probably has the best haircut out of all of them.


That's an unreal fact about Dublin though. I've never met an Irishman who actually plays football, they all prefer whatever made-up nonsense they like to play at 'Croker'.


Zach Szemis has the best name though.

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Cowdenbeath 1 Aberdeen U20s 1


Aberdeen U20s produced an excellent result this afternoon against Cowdenbeath. The young Dons went behind on 13 minutes when McKenzie gave the Division One side the lead. However Neil Cooper's young side equalised on 40 through Jordon Brown. The midfielder was set up by Stephen O'Neill and after making one of his trademark late bursts into the box and he finished past Flynn. This was Jordon's first game back since a receiving a serious injury last season whilst on loan at Forfar at this very ground.


Both teams had chances in the second half but a draw was probably a fair result.


More to follow.


RedTV | Neil Cooper Post Match reaction please click here


Aberdeen U20s: Brown, Murray, Duguid, O'Neill, Shaughnessy, Rumsby, Fraser, Brown, Smith, McManus, Low Subs Macaulay, Gibbons, McMahon, Rose, Sullivan, Campanile.


Cracking result for the u20 lads, especially when you see Ayr hammering Well 4-0.

Wonder if we'll see any of them make the step up this year.  Given our lack of defenders I guess we'll see at least Shaughnessy at some point.

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Cracking result for the u20 lads, especially when you see Ayr hammering Well 4-0.

Wonder if we'll see any of them make the step up this year.  Given our lack of defenders I guess we'll see at least Shaughnessy at some point.


Ended up going along to this. As I said elsewhere where very impressed with Jordan Brown who took his goal well. Low Smith and Fraser also played well. Jason Brown and Shaughnessy jointly to blame for goal with Shaughnessy allowing a long punt from Cowdenbeath keeper to bounce over him and then Jason Brown backed off the Cowdenbeath striker to allow him to finish easily. Jason Brown flapped at a few things yesterday.

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From highlandleague.net


Wick Academy 3-3 Aberdeen U20


Wick Academy secured a very credible draw in an entertaining game against a youthful Aberdeen side, with the Scorries twice ahead in the game but in the end having to be thankful for Gary Weir's equalising goal three minutes from time.


Neil Cooper's Dons team had drawn 1-1 against First Division champions Cowdenbeath on Saturday, but it was the Highland League side who got off to a better start, and David Allan capitalised on some poor defending to put the Scorries ahead on the quarter hour mark.


The lead lasted 12 minutes though, before winger Ryan Fraser equalised for Aberdeen with a neat finish.


Wick went 2-1 up through striker Lukasz Geruzel three minutes before the break, with the young Dons backline again caught napping.


But Aberdeen came out all guns blazing at the start of the second period and deservedly equalised nine minutes in, with Declan McManus getting the goal.


McManus notched his second goal with eight minutes to play, which put the Dons in front for the first time in the match. However, the Scorries were by no means finished, and the ever reliable Weir ensured that Wick came out of the encounter with a deserved draw, coming off the subs bench to finish well with three minutes of play remaining.


Wick Academy: M Gray, S Sinclair, R Allan, A Farquhar, M Steven, C Shearer, G Manson, S Mackay, L Geruzel, R Macadie, D Allan.


Aberdeen U20: S Macaulay, C Murray, C Duguid, S O' Neill, J Shaughnessy, S Rumsby, R Fraser, J Brown, D McManus, C Smith, N Low.

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3-3 with Wick apparently

That'll please that cunt Mad


Always good to see former pupils of mine doing well, bodes well for the HL this season, primed to replace Sevcooooooooh!


But....were it a competitive game that mattered I'd want the U20's (let alone the seniors) to hump them by at least 10!

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Another good draw away to Alloa:


Alloa Athletic 0-0 Aberdeen U20s


Aberdeen U20s had another impressive result and Neil Cooper's young side remain unbeaten in pre-season after drawing with Alloa 0-0 on Saturday. 


Danny Rogers in goal had a fine game and made a couple of excellent saves. Cammy Smith and Declan McManus also impressed against the Division Two side.

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Beaten by the Jutes


Aberdeen U20s 3 Dundee 4


Aberdeen Sports Village


O'Neill 45, Smith 67, 78; Trialist (number 9) 46, 88, Conroy 64, Reid 84


In their latest pre-season game Neil Cooper's very young side lost out narrowly to a very strong Dundee team.


In an even first half the Dons took the lead just on the stroke of half time. Dundee's Gallacher tripped O'Sullivan and Steven O'Neill stepped up to convert the penalty on 45 minutes.


Aberdeen played very well in the first half and to go in at the break 1-0 up was a very good effort as they were up against a mature Dundee team consisting largely of first team players and one or two trailists. One of the trialists was ex Don Steven MacLean and he wore the number 10 shirt.


Dundee drew level after the break after a tap in from their No 9 who was also a trialist.


On 56 minutes Campanile came on for Hamilton.


The SPL new boys then went ahead after 64 minutes. Conroy scored a stunning free kick from 40 yards out. The ball curled in to Rogers top left hand corner. But the Dons equaliser three minutes later. Rose crossed the ball for O'Sullivan who held the ball well, his shot hit the bar and Cammy Smith was on hand to put in the rebound.


At this stage Aberdeen's back four were playing really solidly. At the other end Cammy Smith again was outstanding and he was making a lot of good runs down the middle. The Dons were showing lots of inventive play.


The Dons were rewarded for their efforts when they retook the lead on 78 minutes. O'Sullivan once again held up the ball well and passed to Smith who drive shot past keeper (3-2)


However Aberdeen were unable to hold on and conceded two late goals. On 84 minutes - Dundee No 17 gets ball in the box and nudges past Rogers (3-3). And then with two minutes remaining Dundee's No 9 scored after ball came in from the right. It was a very disappointing goal to lose especially as the Dons had defended so well up to that point.


Still a very good performance from the young Dons.


Aberdeen: Rogers, Murray, Duguid, Gibbons, Rose, Rumsby, Hamilton, McMahon, Smith, O'Neill, O'Sullivan Subs: Campanile, Close, Hume, Szemis, Macaulay

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  • 2 weeks later...

Win in their final pre-season friendly


Aberdeen U20s 6 Colony Park 1



Neil Cooper's U20 side finished their pre-season campaign with a 6-1 victory over Colony Park in Inverurie this evening. The young Dons have played extremely well during in all their friendly matches especially as they have had a very tough schedule and played against a number of senior sides.


Aberdeen opening the scoring after 21 minutes. Alan O'Sullivan was taken down in the box and captain Stephen O'Neill took the responsibility from the spot to put the Dons one up. Then six minutes later Cammy Smith put in an excellent low hard cross which found Declan McManus free at the back post and last season's top scorer in the Clydesdale Bank Youth league made no mistake.


On 38 minutes Declan got his second when Gibbons played a great ball for O'Sullivan who in turn found McManus. Then just on the stroke of half time a corner from O'Neill was met by Michael Rose at the back and he volleyed the ball home.


After the break Neil Cooper made a number of changes and eventually played all seven of his substitutes.


McManus completed his hat-trick on 65 minutes when once again O'Neill provided the assist. The Junior side got on the score sheet when substitute Hart beat sub keeper Macaulay after 75 minutes. It was McManus however who got the final word when Smith fired a cross in and Declan put the ball in the top corner for his fourth. The McManus/Smith partnership looks extremely encouraging for the season ahead.


Team: Rogers (Macaulay 45), Murray, Duguid (Hume 52), Gibbons (Campanile 59), Rose, Rumsby (Close 62), McMahon (Hamilton 45), O'Neill, McManus, Smith, O'Sullivan (Szemis 66).

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Please see details below for the following confirmed under 20's match:


Game: Hearts v Aberdeen


Date: Wednesday 8th August 2012


Venue: New Victoria Park, Newtongrange


K.O: 2.00pm


Chance for those heading down to ER for the Scotland game to head along first.

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They beat Hearts 3-1 this afternoon with goals from Joe Shaugnessy, Declan McManus and Nicky Low. :thumbsup:


superb, hearts have been one of the best u19s the last few years have they not?


Hearts U20s 1-3 Aberdeen U20s


Aberdeen u120s this afternoon beat Hearts 3-1 this afternoon at New Victoria Park, Newtongrange.


A superb result for Neil Cooper's men in the opening game of the new look Clydesdale Bank Youth League.


All the goals come in the second half. Joe Shaugnessy opened the scoring. Then the league's top scorer last season Declan McManus scored a second before Nicky Low added a quite brilliant third. The midfielder ran from the half way line, beat a number of players before firing home. Hearts scored a late consolation goal in the final minute.


Full report to follow


Team: Rogers, Murray, Duguid, Brown, Shaughnessy, Rumsby, Fraser, O'Neill, McManus, Smith, Low


Subs Gibbons, Rose, McMahon, Ferries, Hamilton, Campanile, MacAulay

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6-0 win over St Johnstone today.




Are other teams playing a lot of inexperienced guys compared to us this season.  I know we have a number of new kids on the block but we seem to a fairly experienced nulceus to the team, and judging by Fraser, players more than capable of making the step up.


Edit and that is without Fraser or McManus who are on Scotland u19 duty

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