Cammy Smith believes Aberdeen have a point to prove when rivals Celtic visit Pittodrie on Saturday.
The Dons achieved a record points total last season and finished second for the first time in more than 20 years. But the one major disappointment for Derek McInnes’ side was a failure to take a single point off the Hoops.
Ronny Deila’s Hoops triumphed in all four league meetings but Smith, who was an unused substitute when the Dons last defeated Celtic at Pittodrie last February, says his team-mates are feeling confident.
He said: “It would be nice to beat them as we never managed that last year.
“The games against them this year will be important.
“We have shown before we can beat them as we defeated them twice the season before.
“We beat them at Celtic Park and at Pittodrie. We have shown plenty times we can beat them. We know if we turn up on the day and perform like we can that we can beat them.
“It is a long season and, whatever happens on Saturday, there are still plenty of games left. This is the most important game so far.”
The Dons have made a flawless start to the league season with five wins out of five and only one goal conceded.
Smith, who has made two substitute appearances this season, is hoping a good display in Tuesday’s Energy Cities Community Cup win against Viking FK will have put him in contention to face the Hoops.
He said: “We could not have started the season any better. Celtic are obviously a good team and they will come here confident as well.
“It has all the ingredients for a good match. I’m sure it will be a good atmosphere. The supporters will be right behind the team and desperate for us to get the three points.”
But Smith accepts he may have to wait for his chance to shine with the Dons team in such fine form.
He added: “I don’t think there is any time for sulking around if you are not playing. The manager certainly wouldn’t want that and it would only be bad for the squad.
“If you are not in the team it is for a reason. Whether it is tactical or whatever, there is always a reason behind it.
“If you are not in the team you just need to work hard and hopefully get in the team next week.
“There are 18 boys expecting to play and wanting to play every week.
“It will be tough as the team has won five on the bounce.
“You can’t really do much about that.
“If the team is winning you can’t expect much to happen. I just hope I have put myself in the mix.”