Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes has challenged his players to prove they are not one-hit wonders by retaining the League Cup.
Kilmarnock and St Mirren, the 2012 and 2013 winners of the trophy, failed to build on their success, but McInnes is confident his side is good enough to compete for honours on a regular basis.
The Dons ended a 19-year wait for silverware by defeating Caley Thistle on penalties in last season’s final and McInnes hopes that experience will help them overcome Dundee United in tomorrow’s semi-final at Hampden.
He said: “A lot of teams can win a cup and then not do anything afterwards.
“Since they won the League Cup last season this team has demonstrated how focused and motivated they are.
“This is our third semi-final in a row, while our league form last season and this season has shown there is a lot to like about us.
“We want to build on winning a trophy rather than just having it as something to remember.
“We want to win it again and be successful again.
“The team has a maturity about them and the players have another year of experience. They know what it takes to win this competition and the feeling when they win it.
“I don’t need to paint a picture for them, they know what is there for them if they can do it again, the motivation has always been there to win.”
The expectation on the Aberdeen team has increased considerably following last year’s successful campaign.
But McInnes has no doubt his players can rise to the occasion at Hampden tomorrow.
He added: “We are all working hard to be successful. It is our job to meet the demands of the support and expectation has risen after so long without a trophy.
“That means we have to meet the challenge head on. It is nothing to be scared of as we have a good team. If I didn’t have a good team I would maybe be a bit more worried about things. I am very confident as we have a great support behind us as well as the players on the pitch and the staff to achieve.
“We have a lot going for us and it will take a good side to stop us.”