Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes is confident returning midfielder Craig Bryson will bring the leadership sorely lacking in the 4-0 humiliation to Celtic.
Summer signing Bryson is set to start against Hamilton away tonight having recovered from an ankle injury.
The former Derby County midfielder, 32, was introduced by McInnes at half-time when the Reds were trailing 4-0 to Celtic.
McInnes said: “Any manager is looking for leaders and we are no different.
“Craig Bryson certainly has those qualities where he can bark out instructions, encourage and make sure people are doing their jobs properly on the pitch.
“Every manager looks for that influence and Craig is one that can give us that.
“It is a huge boost to have him back. I think everyone universally saw the importance of that signing, not just at Aberdeen but throughout Scottish football.
“We have not really had any sort of influence from Craig.
“Now he is working his way through his latest injury, Craig can give us that influence.
“You saw his experience and influence in part on Sunday.”
Midfielder Lewis Ferguson will also return tonight having served a two-game suspension issued for a straight red card late on in the recent 1-1 draw with Hibs.
Aberdeen were slaughtered on the pitch by Celtic and off it by critics and supporters for the woeful performance on Sunday.
McInnes accepts that criticism was justified and that Aberdeen supporters deserve better.
The Aberdeen manager admits the absence of aggression from his team was worrying and that there was a post-mortem into the defeat conducted in-house, between the players and management.
He said: “I was critical on Sunday. No one was more critical of my team than me.
“Supporters should expect better and I expect better.
“The lack of aggression was a concern because it was something we banged on about all week.
“It was something that was sadly lacking in the performance.
“It was a real sobering, difficult experience watching that on Sunday. It was tough.
“We spoke about it on Sunday and I said a lot of what I wanted to say then and I stand by it.
“The time to do something about it was Sunday and not now.
“We can only deal with the next game which is Hamilton. It is important we try to take small steps to recover and the biggest one we can take is by winning at Hamilton.
“I think we lost a bit of confidence as a team after losing the first goal and then quickly losing the next one.
“The biggest drain of confidence for any team or player is losing cheap goals.”
The 4-0 capitulation was the second time this season the Dons have folded against the Old Firm having crashed 5-0 to Rangers at Ibrox.
McInnes said: “To try to compete in any game against teams with better players, which Celtic are at the moment as they are a very good side, you have to let them know you are there.
“It is something we will look at the next time we play the Old Firm. However, for now there is no benefit in dwelling on that.”
The growing gap between Aberdeen and the Glasgow two is a worry. However, perhaps more of a concern for Aberdeen should be the closing of the gap between them and so-called “lesser” clubs.
That will have to be addressed tonight when Aberdeen face Hamilton away at a stadium that has not been a happy hunting ground for McInnes and his team.
He said: “Hamilton have dipped into a couple of different systems and Brian (Rice, manager) has tried to be positive, particularly at home.
“Part of Hamilton’s DNA is they try to make it difficult for you and try to get the ball forward quickly.
“They try to put balls into the box and we have to be ready for that. We have to expect a tough match and obviously it is on an artificial pitch.
“Hopefully, regardless of what system Hamilton play we will deal with it and win the game.”