Winger Connor McLennan today warned it is time for inconsistent Aberdeen to deliver wins as the bid for Europe enters the crunch period.
The 20-year-old netted the equaliser to complete a comeback from two goals down to salvage a 2-2 draw at Kilmarnock on Wednesday night.
However, he accepts with nine Premiership games remaining draws will not be enough to finish third in the Premiership and secure European qualification.
That call to arms is particularly pertinent with Aberdeen’s recent league woes at Pittodrie threatening to derail that bid for third.
Aberdeen, who host Hibs today, have lost the last four Premiership games at home.
Scotland Under-21 international McLennan admits that barren home run must end today.
He said: “It is crunch time now and we have to go for three points in every game.
“The season is still well within our hands as we have the Scottish Cup semi-final and third place is also up for grabs.
“There have been games in the balance but we have to go for a win because anything less will be two dropped points. We need to finish the season strongly.”
In six games at Pittodrie this season, four in the league and two in the Scottish Cup, the Dons have won just once.
McLennan cannot pinpoint what is going wrong on home turf but he and his fellow Dons are desperate to put it right.
On the home form this year, he said: “I don’t know why that is. “All we can do now is try to focus on the rest of the games coming up and hopefully put that right.”
McLennan was pivotal in the Reds battling back from behind at Rugby Park with an assist for Niall McGinn’s opener before pitching in with his third goal of the season with a header.
He said: “The goal was what we needed to get the point although obviously we wanted the three.
“It is always good to get on the scoresheet but the main thing was that we didn’t get the win at Kilmarnock that we wanted.
“Niall is finding a knack in that central area and is getting a few goals in there.
“I seem to be able to pick him out and Niall reads the balls I deliver into the box. We are getting a good connection.”
The draw at Kilmarnock was only McLennan’s eighth start of the campaign to date.
Last season the winger started 21 times and was a vital cog in Derek McInnes’ starting XI in the second half of the term, in the absence of Gary Mackay-Steven due to injury.
Mackay-Steven would move to New York City last summer.
After delivering a goal and assist Pittodrie youth academy graduate McLennan aims to make a major impact in the bid for Europe and Scottish Cup glory.
He said: “The season has been a bit stop start for me and I did not have a run of games as much as I would have wanted to.
“There are plenty of players in the squad and ones coming back from injury so we are getting stronger as a squad. It is good to have that competition. In training the standard is always up there.
“Hopefully now I can start the season as strong as I can.”
When not selected for the starting XI McLennan bust a gut to force his way into the side.
He said: “You have to do what you can to get in the team and then to stay in it. There was a lot of games recently in February so the team was getting rotated quite a lot.
“You do what you can on the training pitch and the gaffer will choose who he thinks can help win the game.”
Currently sitting third in the Premiership, Motherwell occupy pole position for Europe, with a three-point advantage over Aberdeen.
The home clash with Hibs today is the first of a double header this week that will be crucial in the race for third.
Aberdeen face Motherwell away on Friday in a game that if not “must win”, is a “must not lose”.
McLennan said: “It is always a tough game against Hibs.
“Obviously Hibs did not get a good result against Hearts (3-1 midweek Premiership loss) so we know they will be right up for it.
“We will have to be ready for them.”