Aberdeen started their Premiership campaign with a 3-2 win against Hearts in an action-packed encounter at Pittodrie.
The Dons were in control for most of the match and led through Sam Cosgrove’s first half strike.
But Hearts threatened an unlikely victory with second half goals from Steven Naismith and Jamie Walker, but Cosgrove’s penalty and Ryan Hedges winner late on ensured the three points stayed in the Granite City.
Reds gaffer Derek McInnes made two changes from the side that beat Chikhura Sachkhere 5-0 in the Europa League on Thursday.
Ryan Hedges and Niall McGinn dropped to the bench with Scott Wright and James Wilson coming in to the starting 11 for his first start since joining the club permanently in this summer.
The Dons had the first chance on eight minutes when Jon Gallagher and Wright’s intricate short corner routine set up Wilson, who fired narrowly over from 12 yards.
In the 13th minute Aberdeen took the lead with Jambos captain Christophe Berra badly exposed at the back.
Scott McKenna dispossessed Uche Ikpeazu in the Dons’ half and Andrew Conside fired a long ball down the left channel. Berra’s attempted header was poor with Cosgrove able to race onto the loose ball and finish calmly into the bottom right corner from the left side of the area for his seventh goal in five games this term.
Soon after Hearts goalie Zdenek Zlamal was tested by Gallagher’s vicious strike from 25 yards that the keeper parried to safety.
At the other end Hearts offered from threat on 20 minutes. Lewis Ferguson was caught in possession by Ikpeazu with Jake Mulraney freeing Michael Smith on the right, his driven cross as turned behind by Shay Logan.
From Andrew Irving’s corner on the left Berra produced a flying header which Joe Lewis did well to tip over.
After that chances were at premium in the first period as Hearts became increasingly physical and managed to disrupt Aberdeen’s attempts to be creative.
Seconds before the break an Irving free-kick flashed across the goal face with Craig Halkett close to getting a touch.
Chances were thin on the ground at the start of the second period but from nothing Hearts equalised midway through the half.
Clevid Dikamona’s long throw-in from the right was flicked on by Craig Halkett and two minutes after coming on Naismith bulleted home a diving header from six yards.
The Dons were rattled for after the leveller with sub Washington spearing a shot just wide from 15 yards as Hearts sensed the chance to take an unlikely lead.
On 76 minutes the Jambos did lead when Ikpeazu got free on the edge of the area and rolled in Jamie Walker who dinked beyond Lewis from 10 yards.
Two minutes later Hearts were down to 10 men when Hickey was received a second yellow card for a foul on Gallagher just outside the area.
From Hedges’ free-kick Dikamona bundled over Niall McGinn with ref Don Robertson pointing to the penalty spot with Cosgrove firing high into the right corner.
Aberdeen showed their resolve and spirit to net the winner with five minutes to play.
Greg Leigh’s cross from the left was flicked on by McGinn and Hedges blasted into the roof of the net left-footed from 15 yards to the delight of most of the 16,410 inside Pittodrie.
Aberdeen: Joe Lewis, Shay Logan, Andrew Considine, Scott McKenna, Greg Leigh, Funso Ojo, Jon Gallagher (Bruce Anderson 81), Lewis Ferguson, Scott Wright (Ryan Hedges 61), James Wilson (Niall McGinn 68), Sam Cosgrove.
Subs not used: Tomas Cerny, Calvin Ramsay, Dean Campbell, Stevie May.
Hearts: Zdenek Zlamal, Michael Smith, John Souttar (Clevid Dikamona 39), Christophe Berra, Sean Clare, Jamie Walker, Jake Mulraney (Conor Washington 66), Uche Ikpeazu, Craig Halkett, Andrew Irving (Steven Naismith 66), Aaron Hickey.
Subs not used: Colin Doyle, Aidan White, Oliver Bozanic, Harry Cochrane.