ABERDEEN threw away the opportunity of putting added pressure on Celtic at the top of the Premiership when they were held to a 1-1 draw by St Johnstone at Pittodrie today.
And the Dons were dealt a blow before the game with the news top goalscorer Adam Rooney will miss up to six weeks with a thigh injury. The striker has netted 19 times this season and he will be missed in the title run-in.
Boss Derek McInnes revealed: “Adam took a slight strain on his thigh doing some shooting after training on Thursday. It’s developed into something a wee bit more. He’s going to be for a good few weeks. You would have to suggest it will be in the region of six weeks.”
Rooney has been a talisman as the Pittodrie side have pushed the four-in-a-row champions throughout the campaign and McInnes admits the injury is a huge blow.
He added: “It’s a shame for Adam. He was so excited about playing his 100th game, To pick up almost 100 appearances in just under two years is quite remarkable. We all know the importance of his goals. It’s up to others to step up and that’s exactly what a squad is all about.”
Simon Church, Rooney’s stand-in, fired the Dons ahead 10 minutes from the interval against the Perth Saints, but the home side couldn’t hold onto their slender lead.
With only three minutes to go, Ryan Church brought down Liam Craig and referee Steven McLean had no hesitation in pointing to the spot amid a torrent of boos and jeers from the Dons support. Craig took the kick and fired it home to make sure his side carved out a draw – and left Aberdeen six points adrift of Ronny Deila’s men.
Celtic host Dundee on Wednesday night and Paul Hartley’s side prepared for the encounter with a 1-1 draw with Inverness Caley Thistle at Dens Park. Ross Draper put the Highlanders ahead in the 13th minute, but Kane Hemmings equalised five minutes from the end.
And Morton, who travel to the east end of Glasgow a week tomorrow to provide the opposition in the Scottish Cup quarter-final, lost 3-2 to Raith Rovers at Stark’s Park.