Sam Cosgrove says there is no chance Aberdeen will look to sit back and defend their slender advantage against Chikhura Sachkhere when they bid to secure a reunion with Croatian side Rijeka in the Europa League.
Victory in tomorrow’s second leg over the Georgian side would book a third qualifying round tie against Rijeka, who the Dons beat 5-2 over two legs four years ago.
Cosgrove’s penalty in last week’s 1-1 draw in Tbilisi last week ensured the Dons had a precious away goal to bring back to Pittodrie, after a testing evening in the Georgian capital.
Shay Logan, Andy Considine, Niall McGinn and Ash Taylor remain from the team that beat Rijeka in 2015 and Cosgrove, who already has three goals to his name in Europe, would like a crack at them himself.
He said: “It has been said within the team that Rijeka would be a good tie to look forward to if we can get past Chikhura.
“We are just focused on Thursday. We have put ourselves in a good position, got the away goal but the onus will be on us to win at Pittodrie, which is what we will be aiming to do.
“We won’t be looking to get through on away goals. It is definitely a tie we are looking forward to. These European games don’t need any more hype or build-up.
“I am really enjoying them at the minute especially now I am scoring and we have had three good games in Europe. I know all the players are just eager to keep it going.
“I don’t think, as a team or personally, we have hit the heights and that is exciting because we know there is a lot more to come.”
Last season’s top scorer for the Dons with 21 goals in all competitions, Cosgrove admits he has had to adapt his game from the way he was used to playing in England’s non-league system. He arrived in January 2018 for £20,000 from Carlisle United, after loan stints with North Ferriby United and Chorley.
He added: “Coming from England I though Scottish football was potentially a bit softer than what I had been used to.
“I never played in the English top flight but down in the lower leagues in England it was more rough and tumble.
“I definitely got away with more than I do in Scotland but that is my own personal viewpoint. I have had to adapt to Scottish football and now I am having to adapt again for the European games.
“It is tough because I want to play with the ball on the floor and to be aggressive and challenging centre halves is a big part of my game. I have to try and learn to be a bit cleverer and cuter when I am doing that.
“I know at times I can be too hot-headed and potentially too aggressive at times but that is all part and parcel of learning. I know the more games I play the more experience and better I will get.”