Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes expects has urged his players to dust themselves down and go again as they bid to get back to winning ways against Motherwell on Saturday.
The Dons are smarting from their 4-1 defeat by Ross County in Dingwall last weekend but McInnes wants to see the pain of their loss channelled into a reaction against the Steelmen at Pittodrie.
He said: “We don’t feel as if the 4-1 scoreline reflected on the game but we have to take it on the chin. We’re annoyed with ourselves and we know our defending was poor and we didn’t take our chances.
“Days like Saturday are part of the game. As much as we don’t want to see it results like the one we suffered happen.
“Over the years we’ve had some bad results and what is important to keep the focus and deal with it. We have to be better defensively for starters but I know we are far better than we showed at the weekend.
“But what we have to do now is dust ourselves down, get back on the horse and go again, starting with Motherwell on Saturday.
“We’ve got two games in hand which, if we win, will take us clear in third place and we’ve got a Scottish Cup campaign to look forward to. There’s still much to play for.”
An uncharacteristically poor defensive showing from his side gifted Ross County the initiative from the first minute in Dingwall. McInnes was forced into changing from a back three to a four-man defence but he will not allow Saturday’s result to change his faith in his defence.
The Dons boss said: “We’ve coped with the loss of Scott McKenna well and with the injuries we’ve suffered in that area.
“The back three has done very well and one bad afternoon is not going to alter my view of that.
“It was an awful start from us and I felt we were chasing the game from the first minute to the last. We handed Ross County the initiative early on by conceding twice and defensively we were nowhere near as strong as we have been this season.
“We’ve taken a lot of plaudits for how well we’ve done defensively but Saturday was poor from us and when you find yourself 2-0 down it instantly puts more focus on your attacking play.
“We were guilty of not making more of the opportunities we created. We scored one goal but overall it was a disappointing afternoon. Losing 2-1 would have felt bad enough given it was not the result we wanted but the last five minutes summed up a horrible day for us.”