Andy Considine will be the centre of attention at McDiarmid Park tomorrow as he joins an elite group of players to have played 500 games for Aberdeen – but it is silverware he craves more than tributes.
One-club Considine, now 32, has served the Dons with distinction since making his debut as a 17-year-old – but all he has is one League Cup winner’s medal.
It has been a week of reflection and contemplation for the defender, but it is the future rather than the past which continues to provide the motivation as he heads towards the veteran stage of his career.
He said: “We need another trophy. We’ve been within touching distance and been serious contenders every year.
“It was disappointing going out early in the League Cup to Hearts but I feel, despite the changes every season, the boys who have come in have the same mentality and hunger to do well.
“A club like Aberdeen deserves to be in finals. We were notorious for winning trophies a while back and it’s only myself, Niall and Shay who are still here from when we won the League Cup and we’re desperate and hungry for more.
“Hopefully when the Scottish Cup comes around we can do well.
“Celtic have been incredible in recent years but it has got to stop at some point and hopefully it is soon.”
Considine will be 34 when his current contract expires and, while he has no plans on calling time on his career any time soon, he is forging ahead with his plans after his playing days.
He said: “I’ve done my B licence in coaching and will be doing my A licence in the summer. I have helped out with the youth teams so that is the route I’m going down. The aim is to be a manager one day.”
Clearly in reaching 500 games Considine has proven himself to be the great survivor at Pittodrie. He has faced annual challenges for his place but has seen off all comers – including former captain Graeme Shinnie – to remain a firm fixture in manager Derek McInnes’s side.
But he insists there is no secret to his longevity.
Considine said: “Shinnie was the biggest challenge but I’ve had to prove myself to every manager.
“When Graeme signed on a pre-contract it was always in the back of my mind that this could potentially be it but I trained as hard as possible and tried to be as consistent as possible.
“When we played our first game together in Macedonia he played in central midfield and I played at left back and I don’t think he played more than 10 games at left back in his time here. Competition is great in a club and it has certainly kept me on my toes over the year. You just have to look after yourself and do everything you can to be able to give 110% on a Saturday.
“If you can perform consistently there is no reason for the manager to leave you out. I’m still here and still fighting.”
As for his imminent milestone appearance at St Johnstone tomorrow, he is trying to make the occasion as routine as possible. He said: “It doesn’t feel that different. It’s a league game and yes, if I play, it will be my 500th appearance and I will have more family and friends there than usual.
“It will still be a difficult game regardless.”