Aberdeen must resist the temptation to cash in on Bojan Miovski in January.
French club Stade de Reims have been linked with a move for the Dons marksman when the transfer window opens and are reportedly considering making a £4 million bid for the North Macedonia international.
It is a lot of money and would represent a fine immediate return on Aberdeen’s £535,000 investment in the summer in the player.
But, for me, Miovski is the reason Aberdeen have gone into the World Cup break in third place in the Scottish Premiership and ready to challenge for a return to European football at the end of the season.
The Dons also have the small matter of a League Cup semi-final against Rangers to look forward to early in the New Year and I am sure fans everywhere would want to go into that game with their star striker leading the line.
He is the man of the moment for Aberdeen, his goals have put the club where it is, he’s a clever player, makes intelligent runs and above all else he is an excellent finisher.
Aberdeen signed the player on a long-term deal and it is clear he has a big future ahead of him.
But he seems settled at the club, is clearly enjoying his football and he is scoring goals for fun.
It has been a while since we’ve had a player at the top of the goalscoring charts in the league and I am sure he will go on to score many more for the club in the second half of the season 0 if the Dons can hang on to him.
Miovski took his league tally for the season to 11 in 15 games when he netted the only goal of the game from the penalty spot in Saturday’s 1-0 win against Dundee United at Pittodrie.
Dons displayed rare defensive resilience in beating Dundee United
Having made the trip down from Inverness, I enjoyed the first hour of Aberdeen v United and the atmosphere was terrific – but the last 25 minutes in particular was a little too nervy for me.
But credit where it’s due, the Dons defended well to record a rare clean sheet to go into the break clear in third place in the division.
I am sure the 4-0 defeat at Tannadice was in the back of their minds as the two sides went head-to-head again on Saturday, so to stop United from scoring and pick up all three points must have felt satisfying for Jim Goodwin and his players.
If Matty Kennedy and Duk had their finishing boots on, then the final scoreline would have been much more comfortable and the players could have avoided a nervous final quarter of the game.
Duk in particular squandered a great chance.
The ball sat up perfectly for him and all he had to do was lift the ball over the United goalkeeper and into the empty net, but he rushed his shot and it went wide.
He will be disappointed with that one, but he put in another great shift for the team and it is not hard to see why Goodwin has gone with two strikers for the last month.
His work ethic is terrific and you can tell how much he is loving playing here by the way he is going about his business.
Keep it up and he too has a bright future ahead of him.
Staggies in good shape heading into the break
Ross County are another club who will be heading into the break with a spring in their step after a strong final week.
Wins against St Mirren and Hibernian have rejuvenated the Staggies and it showed in their performance at Celtic Park on Saturday, where they pushed champions Celtic all the way before losing 2-1.
When you go to the home of one of the big two in Glasgow, the last thing you want is suffer a heavy defeat.
Getting a positive result is never an easy task at Celtic or Rangers, and I’ve been there and had days where the game is done and dusted by half-time and you just want to get up the road as quickly as possible.
But County took the lead against Ange Postecoglou’s side thanks to David Cancola’s goal, before goals from David Turnbull and Sead Haksabanovic gave the Hoops all three points.
I am sure chairman Roy MacGregor and the fans will be pleased, too – They’ve watched their team go out and give it a go against the best team in the country
County are up to 10th, two points behind ninth-placed Motherwell. They will feel they have a chance to push on and move further up the table when the play resumes next month.
Big weekend ahead for Caley Thistle
One man who could be done with a break is Caley Thistle boss Billy Dodds.
The injuries are biting hard for Inverness now with Saturday’s 2-1 loss at Queen’s Park leaving them in sixth place in the Championship.
Caley Jags’ last victory was at Cove Rangers on October 15 and they have taken just two points from a possible 15 since their 1-0 win at Balmoral Stadium.
It has been even worse for Partick Thistle, who have lost five in a row in the league and dropped to seventh.
Despite Caley Thistle’s poor run of results, they welcome league leaders Ayr United to Caledonian Stadium on Saturday knowing a win will move them back to within three points of the summit.
The 4-0 loss at Morton apart, Inverness can take solace from the fact they have been competitive in all their games.
But Doddsy could benefit from having some of his injured players back in his squad to help the team get back to winning ways.