It has been an excellent week for Aberdeen, the well-merited win over Dundee United followed by the superb victory in Iceland.
Breidablik showed they are a decent team, and hit back well after the Dons’ great start, but the players displayed good resilience and comfortably held on to their advantage. Coming as it did after the Premiership opener, it added to the early season optimism.
There was a bit of uncertainty in central defence on occasion in both games, and it will be a surprise if Declan Gallagher doesn’t graduate to the starting line-up.
The two young full-backs, Calvin Ramsay and Jack MacKenzie, have been tremendous and I would expect to see them getting plenty action in the coming months.
Right across the side there have been success stories and Scott Brown once again proved how valuable he will be this season; his influence is there for everyone to see.
Christian Ramirez is exactly what we have been crying out for since Adam Rooney’s departure; a striker who operates between the posts, but capable of scoring different types of goals, and he looks to be a good professional with the right attitude.
If I have one concern, it is with Jay Emmanuel-Thomas and the contribution he might make in the long term.
I know some fans have immediately embraced the striker, but I have yet to be convinced.
I saw him plenty at Livingston and there were many matches where he offered up a few tricks and flicks, but made little overall impact on the game.
It might be that he needed the bigger stage he has now been offered, and the consistency will come. I certainly hope so, but I’m not sure he’s going to weigh in with too many goals, and I do believe it is an area we still need to strengthen.
That said, it has been a strong, positive start to the campaign at home and abroad, and the early days of the new era have certainly given us plenty reasons to be hopeful.
Winning is of course key, but I have loved the front-foot approach taken by the management and the team, and it has been a joy to see the side attacking the opposition, playing football that is good to watch, and creating – and taking – plenty chances.
Ten goals in four games is a very acceptable return and one I hope can be maintained.
Next stop is Almondvale tomorrow; exactly the kind of fixture we must expect to take full points from if there is to be a serious challenge in what will be a very competitive division.
The first weekend of the new SPFL season was a stunning one across the leagues.
From the Cliftonhill linesman controversy to the booing of the SPFL representatives at Firhill and Hamilton’s astonishing comeback at Kirkcaldy, there were talking points aplenty and some notable results.
It all points to another crazy and exciting campaign ahead and I cannot wait for it to unfold.
There are certainly better leagues and more technically proficient teams in various parts of the continent, but nothing hits the spot quite like Scottish football, and with increased attendances likely in the coming weeks, it should be set to become even better.
Intriguing Highland League season
Being based in the Central Belt, I have to admit that I do not keep across the Highland League quite as much as I would like to, but the early weeks of the season suggest it could be a lively campaign.
The competition has been ruled by Cove Rangers and Brora Rangers for the past decade, with only Buckie Thistle upsetting their dominance, but this might well be the season where that changes.
A few clubs will certainly fancy their chances of doing so and early results hint it is going to be highly competitive.
The head-to-heads between the leading sides will be pivotal, and there are plenty of them this month.
It’s Fraserburgh v Brora this afternoon, which could be a cracker, and in the coming weeks Broch, Brora, Buckie, Formartine, Inverurie Locos and Brechin are all involved in direct match-ups.
By the time we hit September we might have a clearer idea as to what lies ahead.