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Panda

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Panda last won the day on August 24

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  1. But then you essentially get punished for being successful. Can just imagine us winning the cup and getting beat in the EL qualifiers, only for the side who finished fourth getting European football until Christmas because they had easier opponents. Think the new European competition will be great for clubs like Aberdeen. One that qualifies for the EL qualifiers each season but struggle to make much headway. I've argued for years though there shouldn't be qualifiers. Make it a group stage from the off. Inverness qualified for Europe for the first time in their history after winning the cup, they got two games v Cluj and then were out, and that was it, may never qualify again.
  2. Third/Scottish cup winners this season go straight into the Europa League playoff round (unless something mental happens like the winners of the champions league don't qualify for Europe or something). Win and we're into the EL group stages. Lose and we're into the Conference League group stages. So third/winning the cup is massive this season.
  3. I don't know a huge amount about Sporting, but how many of those missing players would have started tonight? Aberdeen had eight players missing earlier in the season who had to isolate and couldn't train. They came back and won six games in a row. Sporting were weakened, but they were still huge favourites tonight. The players who played tonight have been training. They've also played pre-season friendlies - beating a Spanish La Liga side (granted that was with their full squad). Do people actually take rocket seriously? We put on Scott Wright, but attacking wise the chances were similar to the first half. Sporting broke numerous times on the counter and still had the best two chances of the half. Whether they were weakened or not, they were still far better than we were. It wasn't an opportunity missed as if we were somehow the favourites who should have went and attacked them from the off - we just got closer to them because they weren't at their best.
  4. Harsh to suggest we were too defensive or didn't have a go. We saw plenty of the ball in their final third, the decision making was poor on almost every occasion. Considering we had Kennedy, Devlin and Cosgrove missing - the line-up was pretty much what we will likely have at Ross County on Sunday. The only key decision was dropping Wright for a more defensive minded player in McGeouch. But I can totally understand the reasoning for that. We were going into the unknown, didn't have a clue what their line-up would be, hadn't been able to watch them, were away from home against a huge name who even with nine players missing were still littered with quality. I think it was sensible to begin slightly cautious and grow into the game and essentially that's what we did. The only real blot was the poor defending for the goal. There was a good 15-20 minute spell in that first half where we were the better team and were trying as best we could to take the game to them. The whole "they were there for the taking". Actually, they looked like they could go up a level if they wanted to. It looked to me like Sporting actually showed Aberdeen a lot of respect - their celebrations for that goal were not from a team who thought they were going to roll us over 3 or 4-0. They spent a lot of the game knocking it around their back four and trying not to take any risks. They were cute aswell with winning free-kicks and killing the game. They made it really frustrating and it was hard to get at them. If we had gone gung ho I think they would have cut us open quite easily. If we don't concede the early goal who knows how the game goes - but I think they would have shown more attacking intent and they had the quality to hurt us. We played a good team tonight, gave it a decent effort, but we're not on their level and as hard as it is to admit, the Europa League is too high a standard for us. Win the cup this season (the second one) and we're straight into the EL play-off round where we're guaranteed group stage games. Likely that will be the Conference League which is the level we should be at, and we probably won't have to contend with a Sporting Lisbon or Burnley.
  5. A lot of good performances. As has been pointed out it was made a bit easy for them. But, was good to see two fringe players Dylan McGeouch and Scott Wright both stand out. McGeouch playing just ahead of the three-man defence dictated everything. Quite often we're slow and ponderous when trying to play out from the back but he was good at constantly keeping the ball moving, switching the ball from side to side, picking out Hayes and Kennedy out wide, and also coming forward with the ball too and trying to pick holes through the channels. Likewise, Wright was good at coming deep and linking play, or being that extra man in the box to drag a marker out. Think it was Hedges second goal - my mind is maybe playing tricks but sure Kennedy picked him out, he passed back to Hedges who had space on the edge of the box to shoot. Really nice play. Anderson when he came on played more like a midfielder. I only remember him being in the box once. He was coming down to the halfway line, making passes then getting ready to make runs from deep. Seems to be much more fluidity to Aberdeen's play this season. We've been a boring team to watch at times and apart from the second half against Livingston we've not been much fun in the league this season either, but slowly you can see a few encouraging things happening.
  6. Don't think he was fit enough. He was only on the bench at the last minute last week. May have only been earmarked for 45 minutes tonight anyway.
  7. McGinn a doubt Bryson injured Ojo suspended Considine & McKenna back.
  8. Para-phrasing here, but it was basically that it was harsh on Scott Wright, that we should be going for three or four, and that we already had two holding midfielders on the park. His co-comms was actually really good all game. Really good tactical insight, was happy to criticise the team when it was needed but again in an informed way, while also having the insight from the training ground (revealed Main has "broken down a few times during pre-season", that Wright has been flying for weeks in training, etc).
  9. Agree Wright shouldn't have been taken off - but really all depends on what happens Thursday. If he starts, fair enough, but you never know with McInnes - he could be on the bench for both that and Hibs. Thought Logan played well. Hayes too, though imagine Considine will start left-back on Thursday. If so, move Hayes further forward and drop Kennedy. With each game we're getting closer to crafting a strongest XI, just in time for a huge week - Hibs away on Sunday also a big one.
  10. Solid defensively. But gave the ball away in midfield far too often in the first half. Didn't think Kennedy offered much when he came on - always taking it wide then sending in a cross that seemed to rarely hit a team-mate. We could have just played Hernandez further forward. Hedges did the job Kennedy should have done - taking players on and cutting inside, which we needed players to do since we had no strikers. Thought Wright was good in first half but was too deep in second to make any impact. Overall, considering we've not played a lot of friendlies before the season then have had a 19 day break, added to it being an unfamiliar line-up, it was never going to be thrilling stuff. Best we could hope for was to be solid and nick a goal and we did that. Job done.
  11. You likely saw more of Ojo than I did last season so I'm not entirely disagreeing with you - I can only base on what I saw. But I remember the 0-0 draw at Ibrox, supposedly one of his better games. As soon as Rangers exerted any pressure whatever he folded, was like a little boy lost. Constantly out of position, didn't want the ball, distribution was poor, tackling poor, think he lost every 50-50 header he went for. Was a big reason why Aberdeen went from initially being the better team to allowing Rangers to dominate possession. My opinion of him has maybe been clouded from that day but I've seen little since to convince me he's going to be a success here.
  12. The players maybe? Do they take no responsibility for their performances? Poor signings maybe, but McGeouch has done it in the SPFL before (and I still hold out hope for him). Ojo was well thought of at his old club. I didn't hear too many dissenting voices when Bryson signed. An excellent thread here on why Ojo's decision making is gash.
  13. People are asking why we signed another midfielder when we have so many already, then in the same post lamenting how poor the likes of Ojo, McGeouch and Bryson have been. There's your answer - they haven't been good enough. Plus, none of the above are going to make Aberdeen any money in the transfer market while McCrorie has the potential to (would imagine Rangers will have a hefty sell-on clause in there though).
  14. He's already scored his first goal at Pittodrie - he scored Rangers' equaliser in a 1-1 draw two years ago. Other than that I have to be honest I know little about the guy. Rangers fans in the main seem disappointed he's gone though, and Hibs aren't happy they didn't get him, which all suggests he's a decent player. Did Gerrard not once tour him as a future Rangers captain? It's also not a repeat of the Ryan Christie loan in that we're getting the guy permanently afterwards. Be interesting to see where he plays. He played CB under Graeme Murty I think, Gerrard played him DM, and when he was on loan at Portsmouth he was used as a RB. Has a cracking chant to the tune of Oasis' 'Morning Glory' which of course we'll all refuse to sing because it's not stand free.
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