It’s important for Aberdeen to wipe away the disappointment of the Scottish Cup semi-final loss to Celtic by defeating Hibs at Pittodrie tonight.
You don’t want to let a defeat in a big game like last Sunday’s affect you in the weeks after it.
Good teams manage to bounce back quickly and that’s always something Aberdeen have been good at under Derek McInnes so that’s the sort of response he’ll be looking for from his players tonight.
Playing Hibs is a great game for the Dons to have because the Easter Road side are third in the table and the Reds can leapfrog them with a victory ahead of the international break.
That’s a great incentive to have. Hibs look like they will be competing with Aberdeen to get closest to Rangers and Celtic so beating them for the second time this season would put down a good marker.
The Hibees like the Dons had a big disappointment last weekend losing to Hearts in the Scottish Cup.
It’s about which side reacts most positively this evening that will come away with the points.
Aberdeen didn’t play well at Hampden last weekend and missing out on a Scottish Cup final at the hands of Celtic again was frustrating but there are other targets to aim for.
European football is an expectation for the Dons every season and a win tonight would help that cause.
Looking back on the semi-final defeat last weekend I was surprised to see McInnes pitch Sam Cosgrove in from the start.
I understand the reasoning behind the call to start the striker.
But having only played 33 minutes as a sub the week before against the Hoops following a knee injury I felt Cosgrove may have been able to make a more telling contribution from the bench.
But that selection alone did not define the outcome of the game because the Reds were two goals down after the first quarter and there’s nothing Cosgrove or any other striker could have done about that.
The flip side to Cosgrove starting last weekend is that it should have helped get him back closer to being fully up to speed which could benefit the Dons tonight against Hibs if he’s back to his talismanic best.
Another disappointment following the Scottish Cup semi-final is the injury to Marley Watkins.
If the Bristol City loanee is out for eight to 10 weeks he may have played his last game for the Dons.
I hope that isn’t the case and if possible it would be good if Aberdeen could extend his loan until the end of the season, or even try to get him permanently, although finances may dictate that isn’t an option.
Watkins has impressed up front during a period when the Reds were thin on the ground in terms of striking options.
His performances may not have been rewarded with as many goals as the Welsh international would have liked, but he’s made a big contribution at Pittodrie.