Aberdeen winger Ryan Hedges insists the Dons can have no complaints about missing out on a third place finish in the Premiership after admitting “we haven’t been good enough.”
The Dons’ hopes of catching Hibernian ended on Wednesday when Hibs won 1-0 at Pittodrie, but Hedges believes the result is not the reason for Aberdeen coming up short and was frank in his assessment of the campaign.
He said: “The main thing is that we have now lost and third place has now gone. Over the course of the season we haven’t been good enough to warrant that.
“We haven’t lost third by losing on Wednesday, we lost it over the course of the season.”
The focus now turns to his side’s attempts to end Rangers’ unbeaten record in the league in the final game of the campaign at Ibrox on Saturday, before regrouping for next season.
Despite having to settle for fourth place, Hedges has cause for optimism under new manager Stephen Glass.
He said: “The management staff has looked at what they want. They have already recruited two or three players and I’m sure it will be a busy summer.
“There are players out of contract here and whether they are staying or not it is up to the hierarchy to decide.
“This season has now been and gone. We are now focused on Saturday and trying to spoil the party there then kicking on, because there is still plenty to look forward to, with fans back in the stadiums as well, which is the main thing.
“We are in European competition again and there should be a feelgood factor going into next season.”
With two Champions League places on offer next season, Hedges is setting his sights higher than regaining third place. He believes his side is capable of challenging Celtic and Rangers at the top of the table.
He said: “It is not just third. This season with Celtic faltering you never know, one of the Old Firm might falter again. It is then up to us to capitalise on that.
“At the start of the season, it looked like we could, but for whatever reason we tailed off and were unable to hit the heights that we started the season at.”
Hedges, who picked up the club’s player of the year award prior to Wednesday’s match, had been selected for the Wales squad prior to suffering a pectoral injury in February.
He faces an anxious wait to discover whether he does make the final squad for this summer’s European Championship finals, but is daring to dream.
He said: “If I am there it would be unbelievable to play in a major tournament for your country.
“If not, I will be supporting them from home and hopefully the boys can go one step further than they did last time in the Euros.”