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Tommie Hoban looking for positive response to Rangers loss from Aberdeen

Rangers' Ryan Kent (left) tussles with Aberdeen's Tommie Hoban.
Rangers' Ryan Kent (left) tussles with Aberdeen's Tommie Hoban.

Aberdeen defender Tommie Hoban hopes the Dons can bounce back from their Rangers defeat with back-to-back wins at Livingston and Ross County.

The Dons were beaten 2-1 by Scottish Premiership leaders Rangers at Pittodrie on Sunday, having played the majority of the match with 10 men after Ryan Hedges’ was sent off for conceding a penalty for a foul on Alfredo Morelos.

The defeat ended Aberdeen’s six-game unbeaten run and Hoban is looking for a positive response from his side at Almondvale tomorrow but expects a difficult encounter against a Livingston side who have won eight games in a row.

He said: “Wednesday and Saturday are massive.

“It’s a really tough week.

“Livingston have been doing really well.

“We need to recover now as best we can and if we can get six points from the next two games then we’ll still be in a good position.”

Aberdeen were due to face Livi on December 30 but the game was postponed only two hours before kick-off after Almondvale’s artificial surface failed a pitch inspection.

Hoban said: “It was very frustrating.

“We were on the bus about to travel to the stadium and you get yourself ready for the game.

“It wasn’t ideal but there was nothing we could do about that.

“Weather is weather. We just had to crack on with it, which we have done.

“We’ll go down there on Wednesday and hopefully it will be on.”

Hoban felt Aberdeen could take plenty of encouragement from their showing against Rangers, despite slipping to a third defeat of the season against the Ibrox men.

He said: “It was great character from everybody. That shows the character of the team we have here.

“When it went to 2-0, a lot of people are probably thinking four or five, but we didn’t want that to happen and we managed to score a good goal (through Matty Kennedy).

“Jonny Hayes had a good chance as well and the keeper made a good save.

“We gave all we could but unfortunately we just came up short.”

Hoban, however, was critical of the attempts by some of the Rangers players who tried to get referee John Beaton to send off Dons attacker Curtis Main for a late challenge on Gers defender Bonra Barisic.

He said: “The one with Mainer, I didn’t think there was much in it at all.

“It might have been a foul.

“All that stuff is a bit unnecessary really. People are always going to try and influence the ref, and whether they did or not is open to debate.

“Even the penalty, it probably was a penalty, but for it to be a red card as well I thought was a bit harsh.

“He wasn’t trying to bring him down, it was just a coming together. Players are always going to try and influence the ref, that’s how it is.”

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