Ross McCrorie can be a good addition to the Aberdeen squad.
The Rangers player, who can play in defence or midfield, joins the Dons on loan this season and on a three-year contract from next summer.
Although the news initially came as a surprise to me, the 22-year-old is versatile and can strengthen both midfield and defence and will give Derek McInnes some different options.
It seems like Hibs were also keen on landing the Scotland Under-21 cap and Aberdeen have managed to beat the Leith men to him, which is also good.
Hibs have enjoyed a good start to the season under Jack Ross and would have been an attractive option for McCrorie.
Joining a club in Edinburgh could also have been an easy option, because he could have commuted and wouldn’t have needed to move to a new city.
But McCrorie’s willingness to come to Aberdeen shows commitment and shows he believes he can improve his career by coming to Pittodrie.
Once again the Dons board, led by chairman Dave Cormack, have given McInnes their backing by finding the funds to allow him to bring in another player.
Even though it initially is only a loan deal, it will still cost Aberdeen money before they pay a fee, so the board have done well to make this happen.
The additional squad strength McCrorie will provide is important with the Dons facing a busy run of fixtures after the matches against St Johnstone, Hamilton Accies and Celtic were postponed in the last week.
When you have a lot of games in a short period of time, it can put a lot of strain on players and it’s important within the squad that you have the necessary reserves to rotate players or to cope with potential injuries – McCrorie will help to provide that.
The Dons’ fixture congestion could be increased depending on their performance in Europa League qualifiers.
If the Reds could reach the group stages for the first time under McInnes – which would be a major success and great for the club – it would also bring its own pressures.
But that’s part of being successful – you have to cope with a lot of games.
When I played it was something I relished, because – as well as being involved in important games – it also meant less training.
If Aberdeen were to reach the group stages, there would be glamour games to look forward to, although it would also place a strain on the squad.
And the more good options McInnes has available to cope with this, the better and McCrorie’s signing will help in this area.
Some people may question Aberdeen signing a player who is deemed surplus to requirements at Rangers, but in my opinion that shouldn’t matter.
You need to trust McInnes’s judgment.
He knows what he wants to add to his squad in terms of defensive cover and versatility and knows what is available in the market.
McCrorie ticks those boxes and, while you can look at the rivalry between Aberdeen and Rangers and question the signing, the proof will be in how the player performs.
Whether the Dons are signing someone from Rangers, Celtic or anywhere else, you can’t judge it until you’ve seen the player’s displays.
There have been players in recent years like Niall McGinn, Jonny Hayes and Ash Taylor who have left the club and come back and you can’t hold the history against them.
Now McCrorie has signed he’s an Aberdeen player and his focus will be on doing the best he can for the Reds and his history should be forgotten about.
From the player’s point of view, if he does well for the Dons then any doubting fans will soon be behind him.
Eight-game ban for eight players would be brutal – but Reds will have to accept it
The eight Aberdeen players who breached Covid-19 restrictions have been fined by the club and are now awaiting an SFA hearing about their conduct.
The club had to take measures to show everyone, including the Scottish Government, how seriously they are taking this breach of rules.
We can’t forget it’s the Scottish Government who hold all the cards in terms of allowing football to continue.
So Aberdeen had to take strong action and deal with this to show the authorities Scottish football is capable of sorting itself out and putting its house in order.
It’s been a dreadful start for the Premiership with the breaking of rules by Dons players Scott McKenna, Craig Bryson, Dylan McGeouch, Jonny Hayes, Sam Cosgrove, Matty Kennedy, Mikey Devlin and Bruce Anderson, and Celtic’s Boli Bolingoli.
The Aberdeen players were heavily fined by the club and now they await an SFA hearing a week on Friday.
You would imagine the association will have to take strong action against the eight players because they have been in contact with the government and will know how seriously the government took this breach.
It seems like the Reds players could be suspended for anywhere between two and eight games.
We don’t know what the SFA will do, it’s a big decision to make and if the players were suspended for eight games it would be a huge blow for Aberdeen.
But this is a very serious matter which has curtailed Scottish football’s restart which needs to be dealt with and, if the Dons players do get a severe punishment, they need to accept it.
Dons must put points on the board quickly
For Aberdeen it’s important they can turn the focus back to football this week when they face St Johnstone on Thursday.
Having played just one game, the Dons are already playing catch-up on the rest of the league.
The postponement of the original fixture in Perth followed by clashes with Hamilton Accies and Celtic means Derek McInnes’s men haven’t been able to pick up any points and build any momentum.
It’s always important early in a season to pick up points and start in a positive manner as you try to make it a successful campaign.
You don’t want to be languishing near the bottom rubbing shoulders with Hamilton Accies for any length of time.
Although the Dons have plenty of games in quick succession in the next few weeks, if they don’t start picking up points the pressure on them will increase.
Mikey Devlin and Sam Cosgrove are injured, but the other six players who were self-isolating are available, although it may be unlikely any are involved if they have just returned to training.
As well as physically being ready, would any of the six be mentally ready to be involved against Saints after two weeks in self-isolation? Only the players and Derek McInnes can answer that.
In terms of ensuring the Dons can remain competitive, it’s a big challenge for McInnes, particularly when the eight players are facing a suspension from the SFA.
The job is still to put points on the board and, if Aberdeen could win on Thursday, it would be a welcome boost.