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Joe Harper: High stakes but Aberdeen must show no fear or nerves against Dundee

Aberdeen manager Jim Goodwin is determined to deliver a successful summer rebuild.
Aberdeen manager Jim Goodwin is determined to deliver a successful summer rebuild.

Aberdeen must show no nerves when they face Dundee in a game of huge significance to an already disappointing season.

There can also be absolutely no fear in a match that can effectively kill off the relegation play-off threat – or plunge the Reds into danger.

The Pittodrie clash against Dundee on Saturday is absolutely massive.

Aberdeen’s players have to realise the high stakes of that game.

However the Reds cannot afford to be frozen by the enormity of the match.

Jason Holt scores to make it 2-0 Livingston against Aberdeen.

They have to embrace the pressure to deliver three points in a must-win encounter.

There are only four games remaining in the season and this is the time for Aberdeen to stand up and be counted.

It has been a poor campaign but they can ensure it does not become a horror season.

Aberdeen are only five points ahead of St Johnstone who occupy that relegation play-off spot.

If they beat Dundee that should be enough to kill off any play-off danger.

Aberdeen boss Jim Goodwin during the 2-1 loss to Livingston.

However, if they lose to the Dens Park club then it will be a real cause for concern.

There has to be a combined effort against Dundee to save the season with every single player giving their all on the pitch.

There can be no passengers.

Every player must bust every sinew to get three points.

Aberdeen owe it to their supporters to deliver a victory on Saturday.

The Red Army have been superb this season and unwavering in their backing despite having very little to cheer about.

Former Aberdeen manager Mark McGhee, now Dundee boss, will have his players fired up.

Aberdeen keeper Joe Lewis makes a save to deny Livingston.

Bottom side Dundee are scrapping for their lives at foot of the table and the Reds must match that fight.

It is vital Aberdeen start on the front foot and take the game to McGhee’s side.

Beginning with a high tempo and retaining that intensity is key to deny Dundee any real time on the ball.

Aberdeen need to do things quickly and play with a bit of ‘ooomph’.

Free-kicks and throw-ins must be taken quickly to get them on the back foot.

If Aberdeen score first push forward looking to get another quickly. Go on the attack!

It would be completely unacceptable for Aberdeen to lose three games at Pittodrie in a row.

They have already lost back to back home games against Livingston and Ross County.

There can be no repeat.

Keeping it tight at the back is fundamental to getting a win.

So it is a major concern that the Reds have struggled so badly to keep a clean sheet.

No Premiership shut-out in 2022 is a shocking return – we are at the end of April!

When the defence is not keeping the opponent out it places more pressure on the attack to deliver goals.

Max Stryjek (32) of Livingston clashes with Aberdeen’s Vincente Besuijen (10) at Pittodrie.

If you are conceding in every game it means you have to score at least twice to get a win.

Hopefully the Dons will finally deliver a shutout, and win, against Dundee.

Aberdeen fans have been waiting long enough to see a league clean sheet, all the way back to December 11.

That is almost five months, effectively half of the season without a league shut-out.

No wonder the Reds have been consigned to a bottom six finish.

Nicky Devlin (2) of Livingston scores to make it 1-0 against Aberdeen.

Aberdeen must ensure they do not concede needless free-kicks in danger areas.

Dundee playmaker Charlie Adam has the dead-ball delivery to magic up goals from free-kicks.

In the recent 2-2 draw at Dens Park it was the pinpoint delivery of Adam that led to both Dundee’s goals.

His delivery and Aberdeen’s inability to keep a clean sheet is a concern.

Hopefully Aberdeen fans will be breathing a sigh of relief at 4.45pm on Saturday with the prospect of landing in the relegation play-off effectively eradicated.

Rather than nervously looking at the remaining three fixtures.

Aberdeen’s Lewis Ferguson scores a penalty to make it 2-1 against Livingston.

Ramsay can be English top flight star

Teenage Aberdeen star Calvin Ramsay has all the ingredients to become a hit in the English Premier League.

The 18-year-old right-back deservedly won the SFWA SPFL Young Player of the Year award.

He has been superb in a breakthrough season and it is no surprise a host of big teams are keeping tabs on Ramsay.

Aberdeen’s Calvin Ramsay wins the SFWA SPFL Young Player of the Year award. Photo by Steve Welsh

Liverpool are reportedly set to launch a summer swoop for the talented teen.

To have a team chasing a quadruple interested in the teen is testament to how well he has done this season.

It is also testament to the talent and potential they see in Ramsay.

The teenager has all the attributes to do well in the English top flight if he moves to a club where he can learn and progress his game.

Aberdeen manager Jim Goodwin and Calvin Ramsay.

He is superb going forward, delivers accurate balls for assists and is powerful.

Ramsay is also fearless in possession and very quick.

On receiving the SFWA Young Player of the Year award this week Ramsay said he would like to emulate Liverpool’s Andy Robertson and Kieran Tierney of Arsenal.

If he continues his rapid rise and keeps progressing that dream could come true.

The rise of Cove Rangers continues

What a magnificent achievement by Cove Rangers to win the League One title and promotion to the Championship.

The players, management team and board all deserve tremendous credit for yet another memorable campaign.

Cove Rangers captain Mitch Megginson lifts the League One title
Cove Rangers captain Mitch Megginson lifts the League One title.

Cove Rangers’ are on an exciting journey and have moved from the Highland League to Scotland’s second tier in a few short years.

I think Cove Rangers will do well in the Championship next season.

They have an experienced manager in Paul Hartley, a talented team and a strong board.

Everything is in place for the club’s inspiring success story to continue.




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