Paul Sheerin believes the Aberdeen players will be determined to reverse the form which led to Derek McInnes being sacked.
The Dons return to action tomorrow when they tackle Dundee United at Tannadice.
Sheerin, Barry Robson and Neil Simpson are in temporary charge following the dismissal of McInnes and assistant Tony Docherty last week.
Chairman Dave Cormack parted company with McInnes and Docherty following a run of just two wins in 13 games in 2021 and only one goal in the last nine matches.
Sheerin reckons the players want to respond after that poor run and said: “I think so. Beyond professional pride, that certainly comes into it, they will want to turn it around.
“The cynical side of football is that it has to move on. As much as everyone is disappointed that the gaffer and Doc have moved on, football also moves on.
“Hopefully we’ve prepared well enough for Saturday.
“I’ve spoken to the chairman. He’s obviously asked how the players have been, how training has been – he’s got a keen interest in that, seeing how things are going.
“In terms of short-term or long-term ambitions, he’s not really gone over too much.
“He’s just asked me to look after things for the time being and I’ll do that until such time as I’m told different.”
No big changes
Sheerin was brought to Aberdeen in 2014 to be part of McInnes’ management team as well as coach the reserves.
He says he hasn’t made any major changes as the Dons look for an upturn in form to keep their hopes of finishing third alive.
Sheerin added: “I haven’t changed anything major, in all honesty.
“As much as results have been disappointing, I’ve still worked under the gaffer and Doc for seven years now, so there’s been no major change.
“We obviously recognise what needs to be better and we’ve recognised that for four or five weeks now.
“We need to turn results around and be a bit more positive at the top end of the pitch.
“Everybody feels it – the sharpness of how it happened last Monday. It meant last week was very subdued.
“It took us a bit of time to get back up and going again.
“But professional pride takes over, we’ve got a game to prepare for. Hopefully we get ourselves going again.”
The race for third spot
Hibs’ victory at Ross County last weekend means they have a six-point lead over Aberdeen in the race for third, with only six games left.
Sheerin said: “Hibs opening up a bigger gap is a blow, although I’m not so sure about calling it a hammer blow, as such.
“It makes things a lot more difficult now to get that third sport.
“But we have to keep winning and, if we can pick up three points on Saturday, then we look for the Hibs results.
“It’s certainly going to be a lot more difficult than if they’d lost the game last weekend.”
Experience of colleagues key
Sheerin says the experience of Robson and Simpson will be important as the trio take charge of the Dons first-team.
Youth academy chief Simpson won two Premier Division titles, three Scottish Cups, one League Cup, the European Cup Winners’ Cup and European Super Cup during his playing days with Aberdeen.
Robson finished his playing career at Pittodrie in 2016, as well as turning out for Celtic, Dundee United, Inverness Caley Thistle, Middlesbrough, Vancouver Whitecaps, Sheffield United and Scotland.
Sheerin said: “Barry has got a wealth of experience at the top level of the game.
“He played in the Champions League at Celtic, also at Dundee United and he played down south.
“Simmy’s experience speaks for itself. He has a closeness to the club and the success he has had in the past.
“In terms of leaning on those two, Barry and myself have worked together for the past four or five years for the development and the younger squad.
“We know how to work as a pair and there are no problems with that.
“Simmy is head of the academy and we have had strong dealings with each other for a number of years as well. We are all close to each other.”