ABERDEEN moved into the last eight of the Scottish Cup with a 4-1 defeat of Championship side Queen of the South at Pittodrie.
The sides were deadlocked 0-0 at half-time but the introduction of Niall McGinn at the break as a substitute for Stevie May was the catalyst to secure victory.
McGinn grabbed the opener within two minutes of his introduction only for Stephen Dobbie to equalize minutes later with a sensational 35 yard drive, for his 38th goal of the season.
However influential winger McGinn pitched in with assists to set up goals for Andy Considine and Sam Cosgrove.
Prolific striker Cosgrove also netted from the spot to take his season’s tally to 16.
Aberdeen will find out their quarter-final opponents on Monday night with the draw being made following the Highland derby between Inverness Caley Thistle and Ross County.
Aberdeen made one enforced change to the side that lost 4-2 to Rangers on Wednesday with Scotland international centre-back Scott McKenna suspended.
Striker Stevie May returned to the starting-line up for the fifth round tie.
The opening opportunity fell to Aberdeen in the eighth minute when Max Lowe delivered a searching cross from the left flank to the back post.
Right back Shaleum Logan raced in to meet it but headed over from six yards out.
Moments later on loan Birmingham City attacker Greg Stewart shot from the edge of the penalty area but his left footed effort lacked power and was easily gathered by keeper Alan Martin.
In a low key opening spell the Dons forced a number of corners but were unable to capitalize.
Winger Gary Mackay-Steven tested keeper Martin in the 23rd minute with a low eight yard effort at the near post but it was comfortably blocked.
A dismal opening spell finally threatened to deliver the fans from the monotony when Scott Mercer unleashed a vicious 22 yard drive in the 36th minute that keeper Joe Lewis did well to tip over for a corner.
The Dons cleared the corner and the game returned back to the previous pattern.
In the 45th minute Aberdeen were awarded a free-kick 20 yards out for a foul on Cosgrove.
May fired into the defensive wall. It was an effort that summed up the first half.
Dons boss Derek McInnes replaced Stevie May with Niall McGinn at half-time in an attempt to inject more attacking urgency.
It was a substitution that paid dividends within 120 seconds as McGINN made the break-through with his first touch of the match.
In the build up Cosgrove found Stewart at the edge of the box and the ball rboke out to McGinn 22 yards out who unleashed a superb curling shot beyond Martin.
The lead only lasted two minutes as Queen of the South hit back with a sublime long range effort from goal machine Stephen DOBBIE.
Already on 37 goals for the season the striker broke through the middle, looked up and unleashed a rising 35 yard strike that flew past diving keeper Lewis.
Suddenly the tie had exploded into life.
McGinn was involved again when he burst down the left flank and delivered a cross into the heart of the penalty area that Cosgrove ,met, but his half volley was saved.
Aberdeen went 2-1 ahead in the 63rd minute when a short corner from Mackay-Steven was played to McGinn who delivered a cross into the box that Andy CONSIDINE met with a towering header in from 12 yards.
A place in the quarter-finals was secured in the 66th minute when COSGROVE met a cross from McGinn to head home a bullet header at the back post.
It was 4-1 in the 72nd minute from the penalty spot when a shot from Logan hit Andrew Stirling’s hand.
COSGROVE stepped up to confidently fire home the spot kick.
He was denied his hat-trick when scooping an eight yard shot over the bar when meeting a Mackay-Steven cross.
ABERDEEN: Lewis, Logan, Lowe, Hoban, Considine, Ferguson, Shinnie, Stewart, Mackay-Steven, May, Cosgrove.
Subs: McGinn (for May 46), Devlin (for Logan 74), Wilson (for Mackay-Steven 79)
Subs not used: Cerny, Ball, Gleeson, McLennan.
QUEEN OF THE SOUTH: Martin, Mercer, Marshall, Fordyce, Doyle, Stirling, Jacobs, Dobbie, Low, Dykes, Maguire.
Subs: McGrath (for Low 71), Aird (for Mercer 75)
Subs not used: Leighfield, Murray, Irving.
Referee: Euan Anderson