Aberdeen manager Jim Goodwin believes playing aggressive and on the front foot is key to his backline improving its defensive record.
The Dons boss was delighted with David Bates and Declan Gallagher’s defensive display in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Dundee United.
Bates blotted his copybook by conceding an early penalty but the manager was thrilled with the partnership’s performance on a day where the Dons were without several players due to Covid and injuries.
Goodwin, who confirmed three players missed the match due to Covid related issues, said: “There were a number of good individual performances.
“My two centre backs have taken a lot of criticism but take away David’s penalty and I thought he and Declan were outstanding.
“I want them to be aggressive and old-fashioned centre-halves.
“All I can ask from my team is to give everything. With everything which has gone on with injuries and Covid injuries there have been one or two issues.”
Young Dons also impress
Connor Barron and Vicente Besuijen were also plus points for the manager on his home debut at the weekend.
He said: “We got a lot of joy from isolating Vinny against players which United caught onto for the second half but there was plenty to work on.
“United were a threat on the counter but in the second half we covered well and got bodies back to deal with it.
“I saw Connor for the first time in the flesh at Motherwell the other week. Barry Robson and the guys deserve credit for producing him.
“He’s still a young kid but he’s got a bright future. We need to keep churning out the likes of Connor and Calvin Ramsay and all I can say is these lads will get their chance.”
More options for trip to Hearts
Goodwin hopes he will have more options for the trip to Tynecastle to face Hearts on Wednesday with Scott Brown also in line for a return to first team duty after missing the last two games due to injury.
The Dons boss said: “We’re hoping to have a couple back in midweek. We’ll try to bring Broony back as well.
“He’s only 70 to 80% and we could have put him on the bench, put him on and then he could have risked breaking down.
“He knows he is a big player but the 16 available gave everything.”