Introduced to bring a scoring edge to bolster the Dons’ race for third spot, loan striker Florian Kamberi will deliver goals, insists Ash Taylor.
Centre-half Taylor faced Kamberi while the Albanian international was at Hibs and then on loan at Rangers last season.
Each time Taylor went head to head with Kamberi, he found the 25-year-old a “handful”.
Taylor believes nothing has changed since the centre-forward arrived on loan from Swiss side St Gallen.
Kamberi has impressed Taylor in both training and the four games he has started.
All that is missing is a goal – but Taylor is confident they will come to ignite the bid for a third-placed Premiership finish.
Kamberi is set to lead the line against Premiership bottom side Hamilton at Pittodrie on Saturday.
Taylor said: “The goals will come for Florian.
“His performances have been influential in getting us up the pitch and looking after the ball.
“I like Florian. I’ve played against him and he’s a handful.
“It’s nice to have him on our side now.
“Florian has been fantastic and he’s had a really good start.”
Although secured on a loan deal on transfer deadline day, Kamberi was ineligible for the subsequent defeats to Livingston (2-0) and Hibs (2-0) due to delays in processing his work visa.
After his paperwork was rubber-stamped, Kamberi made his debut 24 hours later in the 0-0 draw with St Mirren.
He has started all four games since his work visa was processed.
What makes Kamberi a handful for defenders?
Taylor explained: “Everything really.
“Florian is quite a big lad, he is strong and looks after the ball really well.
“He makes the ball stick and he draws players to him and that frees up space for others.”
Kamberi was one of three loan strikers secured on transfer deadline day in a bid by McInnes to revitalise a misfiring attack.
The sale of Sam Cosgrove, top scorer on 20-plus goals for the previous two seasons, to Birmingham City for £2 million was the catalyst for the sweeping change.
Also exiting was Curtis Main, who signed for League One Shrewsbury Town.
Cosgrove and Main had both scored only three times for Aberdeen before their transfer window departures.
McInnes moved to secure Kamberi, Stade de Reims’ centre-forward Fraser Hornby and St Johnstone’s Callum Hendry on loan until the end of the campaign.
Scotland Under-21’s all-time leading goal-scorer Hornby recently suffered a significant tear on his thigh in the 1-0 defeat of Kilmarnock and is sidelined.
Of the three loan strikers, only Hendry has scored, when netting a header from a Niall McGinn free-kick delivery in the 1-0 defeat of Kilmarnock.
Hendry’s goal ended a club-record run without scoring extending to six games and 573 minutes.
Taylor said: “Callum is a good lad and has fitted in really well.
“I’m just glad he’s made an impact and one of the strikers got off the mark.
“It’s all strikers want to do.
“They want to get off the mark quickly and he’s done that.
“It’s pleasing for us and pleasing for Callum.”
Kamberi started up front in a 3-5-2 in the 1-0 defeat to Celtic at Parkhead alongside Niall McGinn with Hendry introduced as a substitute in the second half.
However, it was centre-half Taylor who came close to scoring – on three occasions.
He hit the bar with a header early on and, from the recycled ball from that play, was denied by a superb save by Scott Bain – again from a header.
Taylor also had a header cleared off the line at the back post by Celtic’s Patryk Klimala.
Defender Taylor is out of contract at the end of the season, but he recently said he would put all thoughts on his future on hold to fully focus on Aberdeen’s bid to secure a third-placed finish.
Hibs currently occupy that third spot and hold a four-point advantage over the Dons.
The Easter Road club also have a game in hand.
He said: “We just need to concentrate on ourselves and taking maximum points from the games we have left.
“If we do that, we won’t be far away.”