It came down to a penalty shootout at Tynecastle this evening to confirm who would go through to the Scottish League Cup Semi-Final against The Rangers after Hearts and Aberdeen finished 2-2 after extra time.
Derek McInnes made four changes to the side that beat Livingston 2-0 at the weekend.
Sam Cosgrove, James Wilson, Connor McLennan and Shay Logan made it into the starting line-up with Curtis Main, Jon Gallagher, Niall McGinn and Zak Vyner all dropping to the bench.
And it was Hearts that had the early chance just seconds after kick-off after Uche Ikpeazu got past Mikey Devlin and shot from the edge of the box which bounced off the crossbar, Ikpeazu’s follow up header went wide.
Shortly after Ryotaro Meshino cut inside Shay Logan but Joe Lewis managed to save the shot.
Aberdeen were awarded an early penalty after Christophe Berra pulled down Ryan Hedges in the box and referee Kevin Clancy pointed to the penalty spot.
Big Sam Cosgrove stepped up to score his 12th goal of the season and put the Dons in front.
Hearts got their equaliser after a Loïc Damour cross was missed by Mikey Devlin as he tried to clear the shot only for Steven MacLean to take a touch a fire it past Joe Lewis from close range.
Aberdeen went back in front just after the half hour mark after James Wilson was hacked down in the box by Damour – and we were awarded another penalty. And Sam stepped up again to score our second of the game and his 13th of the season.
There was not much to talk about in the early period of the second half, and a third was close for the Dons in the 73rd minute after Gregi Leigh took a shot from the left of the box, it just went beyond the far post.
The sucker punch came in injury time, after Craig Halkett equalised for Hearts, six yards out.
The Dons started extra time with the better of the chances with both Andrew Considine and Lewis Ferguson getting chances.
In the 109th minute, Niall McGinn hit a shot off the right post from six yards, and in the final minute of extra time, Sean Clare shot from 25 yards out.
The nightmare wasn’t over – the Dons missed all three of their penalties, taken by Sam Cosgrove, Niall McGinn and Bruce Anderson, with Hearts scoring all theirs.
It was a terrible end to the game for the Dons, and whilst injuries could be used as an excuse there is more than enough experience within the team that should have killed off the game in 90 minutes.