A better display in attack will be required by Aberdeen if they are to defeat Livingston tomorrow.
The Lions are the form side in Scotland, unbeaten in 12 games, they haven’t shipped many goals recently and have shown they are very difficult to break down.
As a result, another blunt attacking performance from Aberdeen, like in Wednesday’s 0-0 draw with St Johnstone, won’t be enough to get the better of Livi.
There is plenty of creativity in the Pittodrie ranks, but there needs to be more chances created.
With tomorrow’s fixture at Almondvale and Tuesday’s return at Pittodrie, the Reds have the chance put a major gap between the sides if they could come away with two victories.
Looking back on the draw with St Johnstone, the positive since the heavy defeat to Ross County is that Aberdeen have kept two clean sheets.
However, the problem continues to be in attack. After a brighter attacking display against Motherwell at the weekend, the Dons struggled to break Saints down on Wednesday night.
There’s been a lack of consistency in recent times in terms of Aberdeen’s attacking play and, if they could get greater consistency, it would make a big difference to performances and results.
At times, the Reds’ attacking play was too robotic and, while they had more of the ball at McDiarmid Park, Derek McInnes’ side couldn’t make the most of it.
Possession and keeping possession is good, but sometimes in the final third players need to take more risks.
Although this could lead to potentially giving the ball away, it could also mean creating more chances and scoring more goals.
Opta statistics show that in open play the Dons only put 10 crosses into the box against St Johnstone.
In my opinion, that isn’t enough. When the majority of goals are scored inside the penalty area, it would be good to see Aberdeen getting the ball into the danger area more often, which they did against Motherwell last weekend.
Sam Cosgrove, who could today seal a £2 million move to Birmingham City, is a striker bereft of confidence and looks a shadow of the player he’s been in the last two seasons.
The Opta stats also show the Englishman only had two touches inside the box, as shown below, which limits his chances of scoring a goal.
However, McInnes doesn’t have many other options with Curtis Main unavailable in Perth and Bruce Anderson left on the bench.
Cosgrove needs something to spark him back into life, however, the confidence he has played with in previous seasons doesn’t just come back naturally. Maybe a clean break will help him in this regard.
Ultimately, confidence comes from scoring again and, even if you don’t score, if you work hard and lead the line well that can give you a boost as well.
Watching Cosgrove struggling is very frustrating when we know what a clinical goalscorer he can be.
He needs to find a way to get his confidence back and get himself in scoring positions more of the time.
Funso Ojo loan move makes sense
Aberdeen midfielder Funso Ojo has joined Wigan Athletic on loan and it’s a move that makes sense.
He played quite well in the win over Motherwell last weekend, but the Belgian has struggled to establish himself in the Dons side since joining from Scunthorpe United 18 months ago.
If there are players who aren’t going to be regulars in the team, then it makes sense to move them on.
Central midfield is a particularly competitive area of Derek McInnes’ squad.
Ross McCrorie and Lewis Ferguson have been the first picks in that area, with Dean Campbell deputising.
With Dylan McGeouch nearing a return from his groin injury, then it would be hard to see Ojo featuring too much.
It doesn’t seem like Ojo will be the only player to leave Pittodrie before the transfer window shuts on Monday night.
I’ve mentioned Cosgrove above, and the writing has been on the wall for Ronald Hernandez for some time, so you would expect him to depart.
A deal could yet be struck for Scott Wright to move to Rangers now.
The attacker has signed a pre-contract agreement to move to Ibrox in the summer.
Although I’m a fan of Wright, now that his mind is made up about where he’s going next, it would be best for all parties if things could be wrapped up in this window without it dragging on until the end of the season.