Shinnie reckons Reds range of match-winners can be key to another fine season

Stevie May scored Aberdeen's third against Kilmarnock.

Aberdeen captain Graeme Shinnie believes the range of match-winning talent available to manager Derek McInnes could be key in holding on to the tag of best of the rest in the Scottish Premiership.

End of the cycle, said Rangers manager Pedro Caixinha.

Back on the bike for the Dons, who made it three wins out of three in the Premiership despite a poor performance against Dundee at Pittodrie on Saturday, which moved them five points clear of the Light Blues.

Stevie May’s two goals on his home debut gave Aberdeen all three points in a 2-1 win and Shinnie is pleased to see another team-mate step forward when needed.

He said: “With the squad we have it only takes one moment of magic and Stevie May did it in this game by scoring a beauty of a goal. The players who have come in have settled in well and know the way we want to play.

“It’s a strong squad but one which has settled well and on the pitch there is a desire there to get results.

“We’ve brought in a lot of attacking players and there have been a lot of different scorers already this season, including myself, which is good.

“At Ross County two defenders won us the game and on Saturday it was Stevie, but it’s not important who scores. All that matters is winning the games.”

Shinnie knows the Dons can play much better than they did at Pittodrie after labouring to victory against the Dark Blues.

He added: “We know our standards were way below what we want and we didn’t play well from start to finish.

“It’s something we’ll look at but the most important thing is getting three points on the board and we managed to do that.”

Aberdeen’s win ensures they are one of only three teams to have won their opening three league matches – Celtic and St Johnstone are the others – and, with Hibs, Hearts and Rangers trailing, Shinnie knows the importance of maintaining momentum.

He said: “We’re focusing on ourselves and putting as many points on the board as quickly as we can.

“We’re not going to worry about anyone else even if results go our way elsewhere. We can only affect the games we play.

“We’ve got a strong squad this season and there are players who can produce even when we’re not playing well.

“When things aren’t going right we’ve got options on the bench and young players such as Scott Wright and Frank Ross coming through. It augurs well for the season ahead.

“The manager had a big job over the summer as we lost a lot of players, but he has rebuilt the squad brilliantly with the help of the board. It is up to us to produce results. We didn’t play well on Saturday but we’ve won three out of three and that’s important.”

McInnes was delighted with May’s impact and said: “I don’t think he’s been at his best in the two games he’s played so far but even when he’s not at his best he’ll still score goals.

“He can be having a quiet game but scores the goal that gets us the three points.”