Boss Barry Robson admits Aberdeen face a tough fight with Premiership rivals to secure a return to Europe next season.
However, he reckons it is a Euro challenge a Dons squad reconstructed in the summer can meet.
Aberdeen’s bid to qualify from the group stage of the Europa Conference League is over.
Robson’s side cannot progress from Group G as leaders PAOK (Greece) and second-placed Eintracht Frankfurt (Germany) have secured the two qualification slots.
Aberdeen still have two games remaining in the Euro group against HJK Helsinki in Finland and Frankfurt at Pittodrie.
Robson is confident his squad will continue to improve in continental action.
And he is determined to deliver another Euro campaign next season – but admits competition will be fierce.
Aberdeen secured group stage action with a third-placed Premiership finish last season.
They currently sit ninth in the Premiership table – seven points behind third-placed St Mirren, although the Reds hold a game in hand.
Robson said: “The more you play in Europe, the better you get at it.
“We need to gain more experience to get better in Europe.
“The players have a taste for Europe.
“It is really difficult to get into the European group stages, and into Europe at all.
“We are fighting against all the Scottish teams for that, so it is hard, especially at the minute.”
‘We are in Europe fighting for Scotland’
Aberdeen have yet to secure a win in Group G after four games, but have pushed PAOK and Eintracht Frankfurt hard.
In the group-opener, Aberdeen narrowly lost 2-1 to Eintracht Frankfurt, the 2022 Europa League winners, in Germany.
They were then 2-0 up against Greek Super League PAOK at Pittodrie with 17 minutes remaining, only to lose 3-2.
Robson’s Reds then ended PAOK’s 100 percent record in Group G by securing a 2-2 draw at the Toumba Stadium in Thessaloniki.
The Reds suffered a damaging Euro hangover when crashing to a 6-0 hammering at Celtic less than 72 hours after the away clash at PAOK, however.
Aberdeen’s hopes of progression from Group G may be over, but Robson insists the remaining two games are far from dead rubbers.
He reckons the Reds are “fighting for Scotland” in Europe.
Robson said: “We are in Europe fighting for Scotland.
“The big thing is we’ve performed really well in Europe, but haven’t got the results we deserve. I think most people would agree with that.
“We had so many good performances in Europe, but never came out with the results.
“Against the Swedish champions (BK Hacken, Europa League play-off), we had 24 shots at goal at home.
“Eintracht Frankfurt turn over 200 million and we could have got a point in the end there.
“We want to be in Europe fighting and that is what we are trying to do.
“We are not going to be that perfect team, but we will fight and hang in there.”
Euro prize money still up for grabs
Qualifying for the group stages landed Aberdeen more than £5 million in Uefa prize payments.
However, Aberdeen are still fighting for up to €1m (£880,000) in additional prize money.
Each win in the Europa Conference League group stages is rewarded with a €500,000 (£440,000) prize, with a draw €166,000 (£145,000).
With two draws the Dons have already secured €332,000 (£290,000) – but will be gunning to substantially boost that prize pot.
Robson said: “Every game is important to us, so we just have to keep going.”