The focus will be on Aberdeen’s penchant for conceding late goals from set pieces, but my biggest concern with the Dons is their poor serve in the final third.
There was huge frustration among the fans – and no doubt the players and manager Jim Goodwin – at conceding an injury-time equalizer at Ross County on Saturday.
Giving away a soft goal with practically the last kick of the ball is horrible, but the truth is the Dons didn’t do enough to win the game.
I counted 13 Aberdeen corners in the game. That tells me they were attacking well and putting the Staggies under pressure. But a lightning header from Ross McCrorie that missed the target was the only opportunity created from those 13 deliveries in the box.
If there’s one area players should focus on this week, it’s their own offensive set-piece opportunities.
I hope the manager also adds crosses in the open play box to his to-do list this week.
Talented Miovski needs better serve
Saturday was my first chance to see Bojan Miovski in the flesh and it was a tough change for the star striker.
He was out of service during the game and on what was a far from pleasant afternoon for him.
Duk is built like a tank, but showed plenty of desire and athleticism – and no lack of enthusiasm either – to start and finish a terrific move for what should have been Aberdeen’s game-winning goal.
But with the Dons dominating, they should have put the game beyond the county. And the reason they didn’t was the lack of edge in the final third.
I lost count of the number of opportunities the team had in the final third only for the final ball in the box to be too short, too flat, too long or too high.
Miovski might be a good finisher, but you can’t put the ball in the back of the net if it doesn’t reach you and that was a major problem on Saturday.
Will Clarkson be available on Saturday?
The final concern I have is the availability of Leighton Clarkson for Saturday’s game against Rangers at Pittodrie.
The midfielder on loan at Liverpool was lucky to escape with only a yellow card for his challenge against Callum Johnson.
I don’t for a second think Clarkson is a bad player, but he was knee high with his challenge.
Given that County lost two players in retrospect after the Kilmarnock game following incidents a few weeks ago, I would be surprised if the SFA decides not to act in this case.
You have to be more specific in the Dons’ final third, but there were positives from their draw at Dingwall. Hayden Coulson was excellent and looks like a good addition, but the star of the show for me was Ylber Ramadani.
He’s a Scott Brown type, who sits in front of the four and breaks up play before launching attacks for his team.
Its overtaking is very good and it has quickly become a cog in its own right in the Aberdeen engine room.
Aberdeen will need his qualities for the arrival of Rangers in town on Saturday.
Recent results mean little when Dons take on Rangers
It will be interesting to see how Gers’ 4-0 loss to Celtic at the weekend affects his visit to Pittodrie.
Had they won 4-0 people would have said they were flying before their visit, but because they lost the story will now be how badly they will want to bounce back at Pittodrie.
But, having played several times in this game, I can tell you that form is going out the window.
Pittodrie will be lively, the fans will be there and players on both sides will be excited for this one.
This has always been the case, regardless of the results of the previous match.
Staggies lacking fluidity
Ross County celebrated a late draw against the Dons but it’s clear they need to sharpen up in the final third as well.
There’s not much wrong with this new Staggies team. They are decent at the back and competitive in midfield, but they don’t have the same power in attack compared to last season.
Long throw-ins were the sum of their attacking threat against Aberdeen on Saturday.
Like the Dons, there was a major rebuild at the club this summer at County. While Aberdeen were more fluent in front of goal ahead of Saturday’s 1-1 draw, the Staggies have yet to show pace.
Chance for Caley Thistle to press her titles
I was thrilled to see my former Dons running partner Billy Dodds get the three points he needed with Caley Thistle on Saturday.
Inverness have had a tough few weeks after defeats to Partick Thistle, Morton and Motherwell and that has put some pressure on them for their trip to Raith Rovers.
A 2-0 win was exactly what was needed for Caley Jags and it sets them up for a huge game against Hamilton Accies this weekend.
I said I expect another exciting title chase in the Championship this season with Ayr United, Dundee and Partick all attracting attention so far.
But, if Inverness can beat Accies at the Caledonian Stadium this week, they will be well in the hunt at this early stage.
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[One effort from THIRTEEN corners not good enough from Aberdeen at Ross County]