Aberdeen first team coach Henry Apaloo insists the Dons have the quality to overcome the test of Breidablik and reach the playoffs of the Conference League.
The Dons face the Icelandic side at the national stadium in Reykjavik tomorrow in the third qualifying round first leg and Apaloo says the players will be well prepared on the challenge they face.
He told Red TV: “They’re a good side. They are 14 games into their season and hitting their stride in terms of match sharpness and fitness.
“They’re really technical. They like to play from the back and a high energy high pressing team. They like to cause problems when you have the ball.
“They’ve got a few really good, technical players who like to get on the ball and play so it should be a good test.
“Any team with status in Europe is a good side. They are in Europe for a reason but we’ve done our homework, we know their threats are and we’re confident we can come through the tie.”
Strong start augurs well
Aberdeen go into the game with two wins from their first three competitive matches and Apaloo, who arrived from Atlanta United at the beginning of pre-season training, believes the atmosphere fostered by manager Stephen Glass and the players has been key to the club’s strong start to the season.
He said: “I’ve settled really well and everyone at the club has been fantastic in helping with that.
“The games are coming thick and fast which is always good and we’ve had a decent start so I’m happy.
“Credit to the players, they are all good characters and they get on really well. They have the same drive and determination to do what the manager wants. He’s created a good spirit but they have to take a lot of credit as well.
“The start has been great and it is down to the atmosphere the manager has created and the players buy into what he is trying to do.
“When I first got here I spoke about how prepared they had come in for pre-season and it meant we could get to football work right away and that has shown in our performances so far.”
Apaloo also believes the influence of player-coach Scott Brown, who is team captain, has also been evident in the early games.
He said: “It’s well known Scott is a top player first and foremost. What he brings on the pitch in terms of ability lifts the group. His leadership, he’s a winner, so him being in the dressing room is massive. It helps the players and we’re lucky to have him.
“Players want to play games, not to be training all the time, so it’s good the games are coming thick and fast.
“I know it’s a cliché in football and you only think about the next game but that’s what we do. Playing Thursday-Sunday every week can be challenging but we’ve got the manpower to handle that.”
A positive result ahead of next week’s second leg in Pittodrie is the Aberdeen aim tonight and Apaloo is eager to sample more of the atmosphere generated in the two home games in the weeks ahead.
He said: “It has been fantastic. Sometimes you are sitting on the bench and it feels like a full house.
“The home experiences have been really enjoyable so hopefully that continue and we can make Pittodrie a really difficult place for any team to come and play and I’m really looking forward to when it is full and seeing how that sounds.”