So we lost 3-0 to Barcelona. Sorry 3-0 to a high flying Dundee Utd. Sorry, a bang average middle of the table Dundee Utd played us off the park. It’s one result, a disappointing one, and in terms of the Stephen Glass reign, probably very insignificant. It’s way too early to tell how he will do. It will be at least 6 months to get a proper idea, and really 18 months to know his management style well.

But it’s fitba, and there are things we can talk about, and guess about, and see what further down the line becomes the norm or is in fact an early anomaly. So some of this will involve me questioning Glass and Cormack. That doesn’t mean I am not backing them and the team 100%. There is no black and white, good or bad, we all have talents, we all have flaws, I dearly hope the new management team have far more talents than flaws.

Looking Glass

My very early thoughts on Glass? He looks and talks the part very well. To an almost laughable level. It’s almost like he comes from Central Casting. Send us someone to play the part of a young ambitious, no nonsense Scottish football manager, with a gruff exterior, a clear intelligence, and hidden away a heart of gold (or an alcohol problem). He needs to have a particular Scottish accent, a depth of voice (cadence?), wiry, tough, doesn’t suffer fools gladly, and an all black wardrobe. If he was playing the part of a football manager in a TV programme, he’d be a cliche. Too ‘on the nose’. Not to be mean, but you can kind of guess how he did well in the US of A…

That sounds very critical and nasty, but the same could have been said about the young Alex Ferguson.

Derek McInnes

McInnes is gone, move on. Happy clapper, McInnes lover. By Christ I spend so much time on social media that I know what’s going to get thrown at me, before I write it.

The entire Aberdeen support need a factory re-set. A reboot as it were. The plug needs to be pulled out, and then put back in again, all our memory boards are cleared (except 1983 obviously) and then we all live in the present, and look only to the future for a bit. For all our sakes, so we stop niggling each other and straw manning our fellow supporters and stop trolling and being dicks.

Bill Burr voice; ‘However…’

A number of things with the McInnes era, and the history writing and remembering of it, kind of intriguing me. There is one frankly f*cking enormous elephant in the room regarding the McInnes era. It was shit the last two seasons. No one arguing with that. No one seems to be mentioning the correlation between the bad McInnes years, and the arrival of the new Chairman. I’m not saying they are in any way related. I can’t possibly know. But you can draw a f*cking line exactly where Cormack arrives as Chairman, and our team on the pitch regressing significantly.

Even if it is related, that doesn’t make Cormack bad in any way. That would just be sad and unfortunate. We might be about to witness something spectacular under Glass next season, in what will be Cormack’s real first season. But as we look back at the McInnes era, which has been a significant part of our lives going back a fair bit, it’s odd no one ever states it online that I’ve seen. The vast majority of the McInnes era was very good, and there was plenty attacking football, and very fit players.

Let’s get physical

The muddying of the McInnes era is a bit strange though. The coaching, the fitness levels. For the sake of argument, ignore the last two seasons under McInnes and look at the rest. Have you ever thought our players were unfit? Have you ever noticed in the last 10 minutes players struggling, making errors in the last minute due to tiredness, players going down with cramp, the opposition looking noticably fitter, players in our team looking to be carrying weight?

I certainly haven’t.

We lost a very late goal to Celtic midweek. A lot of exhausted players at the end of the game, then thoroughly played off the park by a bang average Dundee Utd team four days later. Did we leave all our energy at Cormack Park by any chance? At this time of the season, it’s about maintaining fitness while keeping the real energy for the actual game. Overtrained much? There is possibly a significant red flag on our very inexperienced manager. We may have learned something, maybe completely irrelevant.

Time will tell. Three wins in a row, and I’ll be meming their genius to death, illustrating them like the Greek Gods they’ll be, and getting called a happy clapper for it.

Aberdeen 0 Dundee Utd 3

Amongst all the talk of Stephen Glass learning about his players, we may have learned an awful lot more about Stephen Glass. The talk of stepping up training, a clearly exhausted team, an inability to rotate players or make changes quick enough. If he was an experienced manager, that result is just a blip. On an inexperienced manager, with an interesting/innovative/untried/Frankensteined backroom team, there are reasons for concern.

They wear those GPS things on their back for a reason. It measures the distances they cover in a game, in every training session that in turn allows fitness experts to analyse how fit they are, or how tired they are, or how ready for a game they are. There will be historical data on every player, showing specific patterns. We not doing sports science anymore then?

The post match interview: I’m not making excuses, but…

That was quite a revealing interview too. Alluding to next season being much better, and player fitness, so the players’ fault or the previous management’s fault. An odd thing to say. I heard Mikel Arteta at Arsenal say something similar a few weeks ago. It went along the lines of, in six weeks time this team will be incredible, just wait. Very odd thing to say by an inexperienced manager. How do you know, when you’ve never done it before? And who is he trying to convince with that statement? His own players, the supporters, himself. Any talk of the future, is just in his head. And all the self confidence in the world isn’t going to make it happen, if he isn’t up to the job.

Gerrard was the example of why inexperienced (novice) managers are worth trying. Now out of both cups, having beaten a Neil Lennon managed Celtic to the league, fair enough the European runs have been impressive, but relative to budget, should Klopp really be concerned about his job just yet?

Regarding Glass, we won’t know how it will be until well into next season. There is nothing wrong with analysing what he is doing though. As he has never done it before, we have nothing to compare his work to.

Diamond Dave the one good multi-millionaire

Then there’s Cormack. Here’s hoping Cormack backs the manager in the summer. That statement has come up multiple times today on social media. Ye know it’s Aberdeen season tickets that pay for the squad. Not the multi-millionaire. Mr Transparency took 15 months to opaquely explain the Hernandez signing. Apart from that, YOU pay for the squad. Not quite sure how the multi-millionaire who’s frankly shockingly poor communication skills (a Q and A every six months) have convinced everyone he’s footing the bill? McKenna and Big Sam would still be at the club if the rich man was funding everything. So next season’s squad, like every season’s squad, is being put together with your money.

And I sincerely hope it is a magnificent season.

The factory re-set I mentioned earlier will happen naturally in the summer. It will be a fresh start in hopefully a much better world, without forgetting the people we’ve lost. It has been an awful football season at a time where life for many has been hard and incredibly stressful. From the Covid 8 to the list of injuries sustained, the losing a manager that fractured parts of the support, to watching horrific performances on the pitch, emotionally we’ve all been all over the place. Football is incredibly important. When I lost my father a few years ago and was in my darkest place, it was Pittodrie I went to, to connect me to him. So whatever snarking I do, whatever negativity, whatever goes on in life, the fitba, Pittodrie, The Dons, is it’s own special everything.

Stand Free