Boss Derek McInnes today confirmed the Dons are set to lose out on signing Shaun Maloney as the attacker looks ready to retire.
However, McInnes has put that setback on the back-burner as the Reds tonight fight to reach the Europa League play-off stage.
Aberdeen hold a 2-1 lead ahead of the Europa League third qualifying round second leg against Apollon Limassol in Cyprus.
After crashing out at the third round stage three years in a row, McInnes insists there will be no hard luck stories this time in Larnaca.
The Reds will tonight face searing heat of 35C (95F) at the sell-out AEK Arena, but McInnes is confident of progressing.
He said: “There are obstacles in our way but hopefully we can overcome Apollon to get to the play-off round.
“That would be progress for us, which is important.
“I don’t want us to be an unlucky story.
“We have been unfortunate in the last two years as our performances were very good, but it counts for nothing in domestic cups or European football if you are knocked out.
“We just want to find a way to stay in the tournament and hopefully we can do that in what will be a tough match against a good team in Cyprus.
“That’s something we have to deal with but we will be confident we can qualify by showing we are better.
“I have said to the players this is the second leg of a semi-final.
“We want to get to that final and give ourselves a chance of getting to the play-offs.”
In the build-up to the make-or-break tie McInnes confirmed Maloney, who looked set to sign in June, could instead hang up his boots.
Maloney was at Celtic’s Lennoxtown training complex earlier this week and it is understood the Hoops want to make him under-20s coach if he retires from playing.
Aberdeen were on the verge of signing Maloney on a two-year contract but the deal was put on ice when the attacker flagged up an injury concern. Both parties agreed to further investigate the issue.
McInnes said: “I spoke to Shaun last week and again this week and it’s up to him to come out and say what he is wanting to do.
“But he has indicated that he may well look at other options, and that will probably mean not playing again.
“We have had indications based on what Shaun feels his physical situation is at the minute that he would probably retire.
“We were well aware of that and it’s not a huge surprise to us.
“I would not rule out bringing in another player but that’s not to say we definitely will either.”
The AEK Arena is a 7,400 sell-out for tonight’s tie, but McInnes reckons the travelling Red Army can also play their part.
He said: “It is clear there is a lot of passion from the Apollon fans but we will have 700 fans, maybe more, in the stadium.
“That level of support will help us as well.”
Aberdeen are without striker Adam Rooney, who did not fly out to Cyprus due to a thigh injury.
It is hoped he will be fit for the Premiership opener against Hamilton at Pittodrie on Sunday.
McInnes said: “The onus is on Apollon to score but we never go into a game not trying to score.
“It was more simplistic in Bosnia because we had to score a goal or we were out.
“For us, it feels like there’s work to do. In any second leg of a European tie, the dynamic of the game could change if you score a goal or lose one.
“You have to be ready for every eventuality.”
The Dons opted not to train at the AEK Arena yesterday before the game to acclimatise.
Instead, they trained at Pittodrie yesterday morning before the five-hour flight to Cyprus.
McInnes said: “It’s the same as two weeks ago.
“There are a few reasons but ultimately it was another training day for us at Pittodrie.
“We were reluctant to do too much out there because it’s not private so it’s almost a wasted training session.
“I’ve always felt that. Given the temperature, the length of the journey, we felt it was best that the players come here, familiarise themselves with the stadium, then go back to the hotel and rest up.
“But the work has been done. We have fully prepared for this game.”