Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes has warned his side those who were given an opportunity to stake a claim for a place in the side have failed to take their chance.
Ali McCann’s sixth-minute goal proved to be the difference between the sides last night when Aberdeen yet again struggled to show a cutting edge in the final third as St Johnstone left Pittodrie with all three points.
It has become a repetitive story so far in 2020 for the Dons with Niall McGinn’s injury-time free kick, which struck the post, the closest Aberdeen came to an equaliser.
McInnes, pictured right, said: “We gave others opportunities and I have to say they didn’t take it. We haven’t lost ground but any confidence we gained from Saturday’s performance against Rangers at Ibrox has been lost. There are one or two players playing with anxiety at the moment and when you lose the first goal it adds to that.
“We need to deal with the expectation but we didn’t perform tonight. We didn’t do enough to change the direction of the game.”
The result leaves the Dons fourth, three points behind Motherwell in the Premiership and the focus now switches to Saturday’s vital Scottish Cup fifth-round tie against Kilmarnock at Pittodrie.
McInnes said: “We’ve got to show belief. I know the natural reaction for supporters is to be frustrated. I’m frustrated myself. We’ve had two sore ones in a row now at home after having such a strong record and it’s why that frustration has built.
“What we do need to do is stick together. The players have to knuckle down and win the game on Saturday.”
While it was a familiar tale of woe for the Dons boss in recent weeks Saints boss Tommy Wright was delighted to see his side secure a vital win which takes them to within three points of the top six.
Wright said: “We’ve closed the gap to Hibs to three but we won’t get carried away. It can change very quickly. But every win is satisfying and we will enjoy this one.”