Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes has some selection dilemmas for the Scottish Cup semi-final against Celtic.
The one that will grab most people’s attention is whether to start Sam Cosgrove?
The English striker made his first appearance of the season as a sub in last Sunday’s 3-3 draw with the Hoops at Pittodrie.
Cosgrove was his usual bustling presence and looked a threat as ever, but that was his first action in around three months because of a knee injury.
Although he has been the Dons’ talisman in the past two seasons, I would stick with Marley Watkins and Ryan Edmondson up front at the start at Hampden.
If Cosgrove feels capable of playing 90 minutes then that may changes things and I can understand why the Red Army may want him to start.
But if he can’t play 90 minutes the 23-year-old could be more effective coming on as an impact sub in the second half, rather than playing an hour or so from the start.
Only McInnes can make the call and regardless of who, from Cosgrove, Watkins and Edmondson, leads the attack, they will give Celtic plenty of problems.
The Dons should take a lot of encouragement from the draw with the Hoops last weekend.
I was tasked with picking the man of the match and I went for Ryan Hedges, but there were six or seven players in contention who could easily have got it, which says everything about Aberdeen’s performance.
Scott Wright changed the game when he came on, in midfield Lewis Ferguson and Ross McCrorie were excellent as were Jonny Hayes and Connor McLennan on either flank.
The three strikers involved all did well during their time on the park as well.
To get a point having been behind was a good sign although the Reds will have been disappointed to concede three goals as they did.
Defensively, the Reds made mistakes at all of the goals, but besides that they were never really opened up by Celtic.
So they need to cut down on those small mistakes that can cost you against a side containing quality players.
The likes of Callum McGregor and Leigh Griffiths showed if you afford them a chance they’ll take it and Aberdeen fans know all about the quality of someone like Ryan Christie.
It doesn’t just come down to the defence, it’s team effort. You need to defend and press as a team. Celtic’s midfield can’t be allowed time to play because that’s when they can pick teams off.
Aberdeen’s forwards also have an important role to play when it comes to pressing defenders and forcing mistakes.
But it’s also worth remembering how many problems the Reds caused Celtic’s defence and the bigger pitch at Hampden should also suit Aberdeen’s attackers.
It’s a great opportunity for the Dons to reach the final – it’s up to them to deliver.
Bitter pill for Dylan McGeouch to swallow
Dylan McGeouch deserves some luck.
The Aberdeen midfielder is facing eight weeks on the sidelines with a groin injury.
It’s unfortunate for McGeouch who looked like he was getting closer to discovering the form we all know he is capable of.
Being out for two months and missing the Scottish Cup semi-final and potentially the final will be a bitter pill to swallow.
As a player there’s nothing worse than going into training and spending your time working with a physio while your team mates are busy preparing for big games.
McGeouch will need to keep his spirits up and hopefully when he returns he can get a clear run without injuries.
In terms of who steps into the team in his place at Hampden on Sunday, Derek McInnes again has plenty of options.
Scott Wright was hugely impressive in a central area as a sub last weekend and he will hope he’s done enough to earn a start.
Connor McLennan also did well having replaced McGeouch after his injury and played wing-back with Ross McCrorie moving into central midfield.
There is also the experience of Niall McGinn and Funso Ojo that Derek McInnes could use.
McGinn’s creativity isn’t in question, while Ojo is the player most similar to McGeouch who could play as a sitter and give McCrorie and Lewis Ferguson license to get forward.
Impact of football without fans starting to bite
The stark reality of football behind closed doors has been shown this week.
Peterhead are having to let 29 part-time and occasional staff go when furlough ends tomorrow.
It’s a real shame and I feel sorry for all of the people involved and that’s the consequence of clubs being unable to let supporters in and host matchday hospitality.
The top flight is also not immune, with Dundee United entering talks with players about wage cuts.
Hopefully soon things will change and clubs will be able to let people in, otherwise clubs will go out of business before the end of the season.