Captain Graeme Shinnie has urged Aberdeen players to block out the club’s hunt for a new manager – and focus fully on beating Rangers.
Aberdeen’s board are hoping to appoint Barry Robson’s successor ahead of the trip to Ibrox.
The Dons hierarchy aim to appoint an experienced manager to take the helm until the end of the season with former Crystal Palace, Leeds United and QPR boss Neil Warnock the frontrunner for the vacant role.
Interim manager Peter Leven led Aberdeen to 1-1 draw with defending Premiership champions Celtic on Saturday.
Leven, 40, has admitted he is unsure if he will be in the dugout for Tuesday’s league clash against Rangers.
Shinnie said: “The people at the top will make the decision and we as players need to focus on our football.
“We have a couple of days to rest and recover because we put a lot into that game against Celtic.
“Now we focus on Tuesday.”
Leven revealed he told the Dons to be brave and relax during a half-time pep talk against Celtic.
The Reds responded with a strong performance after the break with Bojan Miovski firing them ahead.
Celtic hit back in the 63rd minute thanks to a goal from substitute Nicolas Kühn.
Shinnie reckons Aberdeen will cause Rangers problems in Glasgow if they can recreate that second half performance.
He said: “We take confidence from this. The boys are full of character and we have some great, talented players.
“We know the talent we have in the squad and what we are capable of but us as players haven’t done it enough.
“It is a case of taking the positives out of this one but not getting carried away.
“It was a draw and we move on to a big game on Tuesday.
“The main thing for us this season is the inconsistency we have had.
“We have had good and bad performances over the course of the season.
“It is trying to eradicate those bad ones and have a run of consistency.
“If we can play like we did in the second half against Celtic then we will cause Rangers problems as well.”
Leven took over on an interim basis just four days before the showdown with Celtic.
Shinnie says it has been a tough week at the club following the sacking of Robson.
But the harsh reality is football moves on quickly.
Shinnie said: “It never gets any easier.
“I hate seeing mangers lose their jobs.
“It wasn’t any easier on Wednesday when we found out.
“But life and football moves on fast and there was back-to-back Old Firm games.
“So it was important we dealt with it.
“Peter and the staff and the senior boys have been brilliant this week.
“We went into the game thinking we are at home to Celtic so have nothing to fear – and the second half performance showed that.
“Peter and the rest of the staff have worked tirelessly this week, which has been a tough week.
“We have been together. Even under the last manager (Robson) it wasn’t like we weren’t playing for him.
“The effort and endeavour were there.
“If people watched the Hearts game (2-0 loss) for 60 minutes we were very good.
“Almost as good as we were in the second half against Celtic but we got nothing from the game.
“We lost 2-0 and it looks bad.”
Shinnie on his missed scoring chance
Shinnie had a glorious opportunity to put Aberdeen ahead when the match was level at 1-1.
However he fired straight at keeper Joe Hart.
Shinnie revealed even if he had scored referee Steven McLean informed him it would have been chalked off for a foul.
He said: “I should have scored but the ref told me after it would have been a foul if I had put it in the back of the net.
“There would have been trouble there because I didn’t feel there was a foul.
“It is a good save but I hit it straight off him.
“I should have had a bit more composure and put it in the corner.
“Maybe I should have left it to Bojan but I didn’t realise he was behind me.
“I wanted to take the pressure off him a wee bit as he is the only one scoring goals.”