Aberdeen leapfrogged Hibs into third in the Premiership – now the challenge is to remain there or move up.
The 2-0 victory away at Kilmarnock also moved the Dons level on points with defending champions Celtic.
The Dons have only lost once in the last 31 games in all competitions against the Rugby Park men.
The Reds are unbeaten in 16 at Rugby Park, having won 12 and drawn four.
It is a fascinating statistic as Aberdeen rarely get it easy against Kilmarnock, but somehow always manage to get the desired win.
Finishing third in the league should be the minimum requirement for Aberdeen this season.
But pressure can be applied on the Hoops in the race for a Champions League spot.
That European dreamland might not be achieved, but you have to aim high.
Despite a recent blip, Aberdeen have started the season strongly and will now aim to strengthen next month.
Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes has confirmed he aims to add to the squad during the January transfer window.
Due to the cash impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, players will likely have to exit Pittodrie to make way for new faces.
An early piece of business was completed just days before the Rugby Park clash when long-serving Andy Considine penned a contract extension until summer 2022.
Scotland international Considine, 33, has been an integral part of McInnes’ side for years.
The Dons have also opened up contract talks with full-back Greg Leigh, currently out for three weeks with a hamstring injury.
The Dons are also keen to extend the loan deal of Bristol City attacker Marley Watkins, who is out injured until next month.
Even amid a pandemic that is ripping the finances out of Scottish football, clubs cannot stand still and the Dons are looking to move forward.
Derek McInnes will be desperate to have midfield two playing together for an extended period
Aberdeen welcomed back Scotland Under-21 international Lewis Ferguson following a one-game suspension for the trip to Kilmarnock.
It was his 100th Aberdeen appearance – all of which have been starts – since arriving from Hamilton in 2018.
The 21-year-old was named the SFWA Young Player of the Year for 2019-20 and will surely break into the Scotland senior squad soon.
Ferguson’s central midfield partnership with Ross McCrorie is fundamental to Aberdeen.
However, McInnes has been denied that partnership for four of the last five games.
First the duo, along with Connor McLennan, were ruled out for three games by having to self-isolate due to a Covid-19 outbreak in the Scotland U21 squad.
Ferguson was then suspended for the 2-0 defeat of Ross County, and McCrorie will miss the Boxing Day clash with St Johnstone having gone over the disciplinary points threshold.
He was again denied the partnership in the second half at Rugby Park as McCrorie moved to right centre-half when Tommie Hoban was substituted at the break.
It will be a source of frustration to McInnes he has been denied the partnership which is the heartbeat of his team.
No shortage of options in attack
Curtis Main retained his starting slot ahead of Sam Cosgrove in attack after netting a double in the 2-0 defeat of Ross County.
However, Cosgrove delivered a message he will fight for that slot with an injury time goal from a free-kick he’d won himself.
The ideal situation would be for McInnes to find a scenario where both can play – and score – together.
Of course, it was Ryan Hedges driving run and shot which broke the deadlock at Rugby Park.
When Kirk Broadfoot’s clearing header fell to the attacker, he only had one thing on his mind and his positivity was rewarded with a nick of Stuart Findlay which totally wrong-footed former Dons keeper Danny Rogers in the Killie goal.
Connor McLennan also showed he can be a major threat for Aberdeen yesterday.
The 21-year-old got into dangerous areas and caused problems down left-hand side – his only frustration will be not getting the goal to reflect his contribution, despite a couple of good chances.
Aberdeen created the first clear opportunity in the fourth minute when the ball dropped to McLennan 22 yards out, but he didn’t connect properly and fired well wide.