At least this time there should be no surprises.
Aberdeen have had enough warning about the willingness of Stenhousemuir to upset the applecart. A week gone Saturday was a stark reminder of that.
The ghost of 1995 will inevitably linger for some supporters, with dairy farmer Tommy Steele’s double still reverberating through Scottish football.
Derek McInnes had a near-impeccable record against lower-league opposition during his time in charge, with only a defeat to Hibernian in the League Cup in 2015 to blot his copybook.
The draw against the Ochilview side was even more of a shock considering Aberdeen had enjoyed such a fruitful December, while Stenhousemuir have struggled at the foot of League 1 after winning promotion last season.
All indicators would point to a Dons victory and a place in the quarter-finals of the Scottish Cup for the third year in a row.
But as Motherwell, Dundee and St Mirren will attest, lower-league opponents are more than capable of making life difficult for the bigger sides.
It is almost a no-win situation for Aberdeen. Come through it unscathed and they fulfil expectations. Little praise will be given for seeing off the side sitting last in the third tier.
However, slip up and infamy will reign and cast a shadow over what is a promising current league campaign.
Their record in cup competitions is something the Dons have always prided themselves on, particularly under McInnes, with four finals reached during his five years in charge.
But their lone piece of silverware in that time – the 2014 League Cup – will still rankle slightly given the frequency with which they have made it to Hampden.
The benefits and success of Aberdeen’s mid-season break in Dubai will be judged on their record in the coming weeks, which, if seasons past are anything to go by, should be positive.
To question whether the five days in the United Arab Emirates is worthwhile, after one sketchy performance, is very premature, given that the aforementioned Premiership teams did not go away and still struggled.
Meanwhile, Celtic and Hibernian, who were also in Dubai, brushed aside League 1 and League 2 opposition with relative ease.
A rustiness was evident in several sides who had been out of action during the winter break, compared to teams from the other three divisions who had played throughout January and were considerably more match-sharp.
The Dons played a bounce game in Dubai and while some of the tackles pushed the envelope a bit, there was little to worry them ahead of their return to domestic action.
Video will have been analysed and stern words delivered in the aftermath of the Pittodrie game, so nothing at Ochilview this week should catch them off-guard.
The ghost of 1995 does not need any company.