Aberdeen Are Still Scotland’s Second Force

Forget all Pedro Caixinha’s spin about Aberdeen’s cycle coming to an end, the Dons are still Scotland’s second best team at the moment.

Can Rangers overhaul the deficit and overtake the North East side? Yes quite possibly but it certainly won’t be easy.

Aberdeen have had a very successful summer, in my opinion.

Unlike Rangers and St Johnstone, they’ve managed to produce away from home in Europe and navigate their way through to the next round. The result in Bosnia against Siroki Brijeg showed us that the Dons are already well prepared for this upcoming season. It also gave Scottish football a timely morale boost.

Confidence must be high in the Granite City.

Yes they’ve lost some good players. Niall McGinn, Jonny Hayes and Ryan Jack have all departed the club. But Derek McInnes has done well in the transfer market and brought in some fine replacements.

In the Hayes deal, Aberdeen managed to get Celtic’s Ryan Christie back on a season long loan.

Christie has talent and showed that in the last six months at Pittodrie. He’s direct and he can turn games. During his loan stint last term, he bagged six goals in thirteen league appearances. So I don’t see any reason for him not to reach double figures this season!

Gary Mackay-Steven undoubtably has plenty of skill and has proven in the past that he can be a great asset in the Scottish Premiership. Only two seasons ago he was keeping James Forrest out of the Celtic team and playing better than the Scottish international. He didn’t really get a look in under Brendan Rodgers and was maybe not good enough for the champions but he’ll arrive at Aberdeen determined to prove himself.

Gary seems to have settled right in at his new club and with his new teammates. He impressed in both legs against Brijeg and scored the vital second goal in the away leg. I expect him to have a good season with the Dandies and McInnes will be delighted that he managed to sign the tricky winger on a permanent deal.

Forward Greg Stewart has also joined the club on a season long loan from Birmingham City. Stewart might have had a tough time of it in the Midlands last season but he showed at Dundee that he can find the net in Scotland’s top flight. Very good with the ball at his feet, he’s another one with a point to prove.

Midfield battler Greg Tansey has come in from Inverness Caley Thistle on a Bosman deal. He might be the man tasked with replacing former captain Jack in the engine room. The Englishman will certainly add more physical presence to the Dons midfield.

McInnes was delighted when it was announced that they had caputred Tansey:

“He is a confident player, exactly the type of player we want to see at our club. There is more to come from Greg and I’m sure we will provide the perfect platform for him to develop.”

Icelandic international Kari Arnason has re-joined the club and he adds experienced to the defensive line. Obviously having been at Aberdeen previously will mean that he will have no issue with adapting to the Scottish style.

Nicky Maynard has had a varied career down south and has had a lull in fortunes as of late. But the Dons have a good recent history of upturning such player’s fortunes at Pittodrie. The striker had worked previously with Dons boss McInnes at Bristol City.

Aberdeen have also done well in keeping a good core of the first team stars at the club. Graeme Shinnie, Shay Logan, Mark Reynolds and Andrew Considine have all shown that they are very consistent performers in the Premiership.

Main striker Adam Rooney is still there and he’s a man full of goals. He’ll enjoy having the supply on tap that Mackay-Steven and Christie will offer him this term.

In Kenny McLean I believe that Aberdeen have one of the best midfielders in the league. Rangers have been linked with a move but it seems McInnes is determined to keep hold of the talented middleman. If he does stay then Aberdeen will be much better for it.

Joe Lewis was without doubt one of the best goalkeepers in Scotland last term. So to get the former England U21 international to sign a new contract with the club is one of the best pieces of business from the Dons this summer and shows their intent to remain strong. His career transformation in the North East is an example for new boy Maynard to follow.

A huge plus for the club has been keeping boss Derek McInnes at the club. His contract extension was widely applauded and it was a real sign that Aberdeen aren’t prepared to stand still. Derek himself turned down the opportunity to takeover at Sunderland and that to seems like a defining moment for the Dons.

See that’s the thing Aberdeen have over rivals Rangers, Hearts and Hibs. They have a stability and a continuation that has stood the test of time and worked. They seem to keep improving.

They welcomed new investment this summer and have spent it wisely in a market they trust and on players that have proven track-records in this country.

Aberdeen should’t look back and worry about others this season. They need to plan ahead and try and improve on the great foundations that have served them so well!

Leave a Reply