The Scottish Premiership title race is still wide open after Aberdeen’s shock 2-0 defeat to BK Häcken.

Martin Olsson slides Hacken in front in GothenburgIn Gothenburg, Martin Olsson puts Hacken in lead.

Despite losing in Gothenburg, Aberdeen fought off a strong comeback by BK Hacken to go to the Europa Conference League third qualifying round.

After leading 5-1 after the first leg, the hosts took the lead when Martin Olsson tapped home.

To add to the strain, Leo Bengtsson scored from the penalty spot, but Aberdeen held on thanks to Patrik Walemark’s red card with 20 minutes remaining.

They’ll face Austria Vienna or Iceland’s Breidablik next.

Despite such a dominating advantage, Glass said before the game that he would not be rotating his team for the Scottish Premiership opening against Dundee United on Sunday.

He adhered to his promises and selected the same XI that thrashed the Swedes at Pittodrie, clearly seeking to create momentum and cohesiveness.

Aberdeen got off to a rocky start, with Ross McCrorie blocking an early attempt and Tobias Heintz rattling the outside of a post, much as they did in the first leg.

However, they adjusted into the game and produced the better opportunities in the first half, forcing Peter Abrahamsson into excellent saves with Jay Emmanuel-Thomas and Christian Ramirez.

Their domination appeared to crush Hacken’s spirit, but early in the second half, Olsson’s brilliant one-two and finish into the corner resurrected their hopes, and they went about attempting to unsettle Aberdeen.

Four minutes later, Funso Ojo should have put the game out of reach when he failed to connect with Ramirez’s cross with the goal gaping, and things got much worse when Mohammed slipped past Bengtsson, who was tripped by Lewis before stepping up to send the goalkeeper the wrong way.

Both teams lacked defensive cohesiveness, and the game opened up, until a stumbling Aberdeen side was given a lifeline when Walemark was sent out for colliding with Jack Mackenzie’s face for a second yellow card.

It was a questionable decision that halted the Swedish team’s momentum, allowing Aberdeen to regroup and complete the job.

Mohammed was named Player of the Match.

Leo Bengtsson's penalty increased Aberdeen's nervesMohammed came on shortly before the interval and created difficulties for Aberdeen’s centre-backs by falling down, resulting in a penalty.

What did we discover?

Aberdeen seem to be a totally different team than they were last season. As a team, they push high up the field, the full-backs join the attack, and Emmanuel-Thomas offers a platform for them to play from as deep runners come in.

The finest of all of those characteristics was on show in the first leg, when they ripped through Hacken, and they repeated the feat in Gothenburg for long stretches of the first half.

However, they seemed to be much more fragile defensively this week. Players rushed into tackles in their eagerness to gain possession higher up the field, allowing Hacken to play into midfield where there was too much space at times, and McCrorie in particular was caught off guard by long balls into the channels.

And when Emmanuel-Thomas went out with a head injury early in the second half, the offensive faltered. His ability to connect up with other players is essential to the game’s success.

Overall, Glass will be happy to have navigated a difficult tie, and he anticipates more cohesiveness in the future.

What comes next?

Aberdeen kicks off their Scottish Premiership season against Dundee United at home on Sunday (15:00 GMT), looking to build on their European success.


BK Häcken

4-3-3 formation





  • 26Abrahamsson
  • 5Ekpolo
  • 22Carlsson
  • 3Hammar
  • At 76’minutes, Olsson was substituted by Sverrisson.
  • 17Berggren Milovanovic was replaced after 80 minutes.
  • 6Faltsetas
  • 11Heintz Maaroufat was replaced after 80 minutes. It’s been scheduled for 90 minutes.
  • At 45’minutes, 16Traore was substituted forWalemark. It was scheduled for 71 minutes.
  • 9Jeremejeff Mohammed was replaced after 40 minutes. It was scheduled for 73 minutes.
  • 7Bengtsson


  • 1Brattberg
  • 12Fridriksson
  • 13Adjoumani
  • 14Sverrisson
  • 23Walemark
  • 24Milovanovic
  • Farah Shahin is 27 years old.
  • 28Maarouf
  • 29Rasheed
  • 32Mohammed


4-4-2 formation





  • 1LewisScheduled for 67 minutes
  • 22Ramsay It was scheduled for 79 minutes. Gurrat was replaced in the 82nd minute.
  • 2McCrorie
  • 4Considine
  • 17Hayes The time slot has been set for 54 minutes. At 66’minutes, he was replaced by MacKenzie.
  • 11Hedges Scheduled for 70 minutes 83’minutes Substituted for Gallagherat It was scheduled for 76 minutes.
  • 19Ferguson
  • 8Brown
  • McLennanat was replaced by 16Ojo for 66 minutes.
  • 14Emmanuel-Thomas At 50’minutes, Jenks was replaced.
  • 9Ramírez


  • 3MacKenzie
  • 5Gallagher
  • 10McGinn
  • 15McGeouch
  • 18McLennan
  • 20Jenks
  • 21Gurr
  • 25Woods
  • 30Ritchie
  • 33 Kennedy
  • 35 Hancock
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