Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes is disappointed the Dons’ Scottish Cup quarter-final has been scheduled for a Saturday
– as it favours opponents Kilmarnock.
The tie is at Pittodrie, but it is the only one not picked for television, meaning a 3pm kick-off on Saturday, March 3 – just three days after Aberdeen play Motherwell at Fir Park.
The Dons’ home game on Sunday, February 25 against Celtic has also been shifted so it can be screened by Sky Sports.
Kilmarnock, meanwhile, have a 12.30pm kick-off at home to Hibs on Saturday, February 24 and have an extra day’s rest as they are in action against Hearts at Tynecastle on Tuesday, February 27.
Killie manager Steve Clarke spoke earlier in the week of his hopes that an early kick-off for the cup quarter-final could be avoided to allow as many Killie supporters as possible to make the trip to Pittodrie.
McInnes said: “I’m not so bothered about it not being televised but I hoped it would have been on the Sunday because we play Celtic on the Sunday for TV, Motherwell for TV on Wednesday and then we have to play again on the Saturday.
“That’s three games in six days and it’s such an important tie, whereas Kilmarnock play Saturday, Tuesday, Saturday.
“I was hoping the game would be one of the TV games just so we could play on the Sunday to give us that extra 24 hours.
“It is what it is. We’re not going to grumble too much but, in an ideal world if we could have picked what day we played on, it would have been Sunday.
“It’s a very important game for us and we have two very important and tough games before that with Celtic and Motherwell which are obviously tough enough.”
First of all, however, is a Premiership fixture at Easter Road tomorrow against Hibernian, with McInnes confident that even though the Dons have bested Neil Lennon’s men twice this season, the Hibees are still capable of qualifying for Europe.
McInnes said: “I remember saying the squad that Neil’s assembled would be there at the top end of the table at the end of the season. Nothing I’ve seen has made me change my mind on that.
“Although they’re out of the cup and they’ll be disappointed with that, their league form has been steady. There’s only eight points between us.”
Aberdeen’s Daniel Harvie and goalkeeper Joe Lewis are out injured tomorrow, with captain Graeme Shinnie suspended.