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connor mclennan aberdeenfc

The phrase ‘bite us in the arse’ will get repeated, repeatedly, about Stevie May. If it goes well for Stevie May, it will be a mistake to have sold him by McInnes. If it doesn’t go well for May, it will have been a mistake by McInnes to have signed him.

Stevie May will get a warm welcome from a large section of the Aberdeen support. He may get a warm round of applause when substituted. Some supporters will go ballistic at this, and will happily attack the ‘happy clappers’. This will be ‘everything that’s wrong with our club’, and will also be the fault of McInnes.

‘Connor McLennan must start’. As must Bruce Anderson and James Wilson, and Big Sam but not Curtis Main.

On the back of a superb TWELVE MINUTE cameo, McLennan must start. Connor McLennan is magnificent and his 12 minute contribution to Scotland’s result was superb.

A brilliant achievement from him, but when fit, doesn’t he pretty much always start… He’s a work in progress. They watch him in training, every day. Every day.

Also, logically, on the back of that performance, and bearing in mind he has flown to and from Croatia this week, wouldn’t the smart thing to do be, BRING HIM ON WITH 12 MINUTES TO GO against St Johnstone.

If he plays well, it’s McInnes’s fault for not playing him enough, if he doesn’t it’s McInnes’s fault for not using him properly.

Win, lose or draw, ‘McInnes bad’.
*Post match up-date. We drew, it was shite. They need to improve quick or it’s gonna be a tough old season.
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ash taylor aberdeen

I don’t have a strong Ash Taylor opinion. We’ve signed a squad player, probably Reynolds replacement. It makes sense if you are a football manager, if you have worked with someone, you know what they are like. There are always unknowns with a new person, however much research you do.

One observation on Ash Taylor, that may be complete nonsense, that relates to McInnes and looking to understand his methods, is Ash Taylor’s physique. He isn’t just big, he’s an athlete. Look at Shay, the fun guy, the joker, look at his physique when he takes his shirt off. Considine, Stevie May is another one, none of them in my exceptionally ignorant opinion, enjoy a pint or six after training. Nor do they enjoy the occasional mock chop supper. They are athletes who take their profession incredibly seriously. All day, every day, to be in peak physical condition.

I guess wherever you are in terms of talent, if you are as dedicated to your job as to always eat correctly and train at 100%, that GPS that’s on their backs means they can never shirk in training, never hide, never quietly nurse a hangover while going through the motions, you bring a certain amount of professionalism to a team than an exceptionally talented but less dedicated person may bring.

What sort of team while performing badly as they did last season would still get to a cup final and a semi-final? A very, very fit, very disciplined one.

Social media watching

But fascinating, to me in the signing of Ash Taylor, has been watching the Aberdeen FC’s support reaction. Football is about opinions, how boring it would be if we all agreed.

There is a fair bit of negativity about Ash Taylor on social media. Where there is negativity it is incredibly strong. There is an element who truly do not rate him, and are very vociferous in their pronouncements. They are as entitled to their opinions as anyone else. As I remember it was the same when he played. A very significant element didn’t rate him.

When I posted this pretty insignificant meme, when he left, it picked up over 500 likes on the Facebook page. That surprised me at the time. The longer working with social media, you get a feel for reactions. What is, and isn’t expected. He was considerably more popular than I thought.

I posted it again when he re-signed, and said ‘this got 500 likes when he left, no pressure’. At time of writing it’s sitting on about 430 likes. Two years on and Facebook’s algorithm has dramatically changed, it’s harder and harder to reach the page’s audience without paying for the privilege, (thanks Zuckerberg, just how many billions do you need?). This makes the new post, much bigger, much more popular than the one of two years ago.

What does that show in this very unscientific study? What I have learned from social media is the Aberdeen support like positivity. A positive post will always be a far more successful post.

I’d say the much more silent majority of the Aberdeen support, either quite like Big Ash the footballer, or will always back an Aberdeen player when they sign.

I also think this is a pretty good general rule on the Aberdeen FC support. Not a group of moaners, but in general a positive and supportive group of people who back their football team. Albeit they don’t shout about it on social media.

Of those criticising Taylor, as I said they are perfectly entitled to that opinion, but some, a minority within that group, I stress again, a minority within the ones criticising Taylor, who are hoping he fails, hoping McInnes fails, who bandy about the phrase ‘happy clappers’ to go after elements in the Aberdeen support, are people who in my opinion, badly need to feel superior to the people around them. This oozing sense of superiority they so need, as they are, as any psychologist would say, just fucking arseholes.

You might like this https://thedandydons.com/the-cup-winners-cup-1983-important-facts/

machine gun

machine gun

Lots of calls for Bruce Anderson to start for Aberdeen, and calls that it should have happened already. Here’s why I think he shouldn’t.

Right now, at Bruce Anderson’s age, and point of development as a player, Anderson’s career is more important than Aberdeen F.C’s results. Albeit that is with a view to Anderson’s long term development being for the good of Aberdeen FC.

At the moment, Anderson will be training like a beast, listening to every piece of advice he is being given, analysing every second of his fifteen minutes or so on the pitch, and itching to try out stuff in training matches and development games. He will be improving, week on week, day by day, developing to reach his full potential. When he comes on as sub, he is an energy bomb desperate to deliver.

I hope he isn’t reading this, but right now, might just be the best time he will ever have in his life. Life is a journey, not a destination. Hovering on the edge of really making it, must be incredibly exciting. And by christ, you probably do what you’re told…

If we lose, he is not responsible, not to blame, if he misses a chance it won’t be that decisive. He can go back to training with no negative pressure on him. Only the positive, internal pressure of wanting to improve, wanting to get that first team start.

If he starts a game, and we lose, if he misses an important chance at 0-0, if he has to be subbed after 70 minutes with the game not going well, if some experienced veteran defender gets the better of him, it will put enormous pressure on him. When he is training, that pressure will stay with him. It can be like a fifty kilo weight on his shoulders. He won’t listen properly, his energy levels will fall, self doubt will creep in at a goal scoring opportunity. It could destroy his development if he is thrown in too early.

Why was it okay for McKenna? Defenders have to stop fifteen, twenty attacks a game. You make a mistake, you have other defenders to help, and Big Joe to mop up after you. There is pressure, but nothing like that of a centre forward, or for that matter a goalkeeper. One mistake, and the match is decided, entire careers have been defined by a couple of errors. Same reason we took in Woodman when Lewis was injured, instead of using Rodgers. Midfielders, wingers, full backs, can all hide for a bit during a game. Forwards can’t, everything must count.

Less confident managers would have started Anderson by now with our other forwards performing poorly so far. Right now Stevie May is taking all the flak, if nothing else it’s protecting Cosgrove and Anderson from getting it. He’s paid well, he’s older, he’ll know he’s not delivering.

McInnes’s great skill is the ability to make the team better than the sum of it’s parts. That is yet to happen this season. They’ll go away and train together, keep working and eventually it’ll click. It’s McInnes, it always does. And maybe Anderson will start the next match, but only because he’s ready, not because we need him.

The photo: When you’ve got your own blog, you can find an appropriate photo, or just find a photo you think is kinda cool…

michelangelo-mcinnes-ferguson

To celebrate the renaissance of Aberdeen under Derek McInnes, The Dandy Dons presents this ‘timeless’ print of that magical moment when Fergie retired and everything at Man Utd. went tits up, and our man Derek was fingered by Sir Alex. This exclusive print is… Download link is under the image.

michelangelo-mcinnes-sir-alex-ferguson

 

Your free ready to print A4 Pdf

stewart-milne-aberdeen

So Stewart Milne eh?! He’s taken a fair bit of stick down the years. You’d have to be pathologically nasty to not be pleased for him on The Dons winning the League Cup. Adding to his popularity with the now immortal “19 years, 120 minutes and now fucking penalties” line, live on BBC Radio Glasgow to Chic Young.

To be honest, the only way he could have become more popular with The Dons’ support is if he’d ended it by kneeing him in the nadgers and pushing him down the Celtic Park steps. Still, there will be more post final interviews Stewartie…

stewart-milne

Artists impression.

So is his new found popularity deserved. Were we, me anyway, wrong to be so critical of him? Is it ok to change your mind? Are we all neither good or bad, but somewhere in between?

No this is about the fitba, so it’s right or wrong.

Blame it on the bogie

Well down the years I’ve been involved in a few ‘where did it all go wrong’ discussions on The Dons. From “sacking Alex Smith”, to “there’s too many suits working at Pittodrie” have been suggestions I’ve heard. But ultimately, in my opinion, a football director’s job is just one thing. Appoint the correct manager, and everything else will fall into place.

When Fergie was manager, all our directors were geniuses. Visionaries they were. And maybe that’s true. And while sadly Chris Anderson passed away, way too young, and Dick Donald was very advanced in years, we didn’t really get to see what they would have done post Fergie. Clearly the decision making skills of Ian Donald were atrocious. Porterfield, co-managers, Willie Miller, Aitken the stand to commemorate his own Father which bears no relation to the rest of the stadium? Built by a builder who…

Aye, here we go…

Oh yes. Stewart Milne. But we can all make mistakes, and Milne’s managerial mistakes were all human mistakes. The most recent, the appointment of Craigie Broon.  What a surprise for anyone with even half an eye on Broon’s highly dubious CV of non-achievement. McGhee, unlucky. Skovdahl, did kind of work. Calderwood, was the person we all wanted. The extended contract, was Willie Miller, who paid for it with his job. Steve Patterson, holy shit! Who knew? And why didn’t they say?! Alex Miller, after extending Roy Aitken’s contract, ouch!!

But he spotted in McInness what we all know now! He got one right. Really really right! And we can all sit back and enjoy this, until we all hold our breath when Stewart has to make his next big decision. Hopefully not for a few years.

The unforgiven

So Stewart Milne, is he forgiven? No. He is not. He ruined Pittodrie, and that very dull animated projection of our future stadium (wherever it may be!) filled me with dread. No floodlights. No imagination. No vision. Three years down the line, weathered by all the North East can throw at it, and covered in seagull shit, that will be a dull mother fucking stadium. It won’t cost much more to look stunning. Just the cost of a talented architect. And floodlights, it must have floodlights, like the spire on a cathedral to draw in the congregation. That’s where the midweek European atmosphere came from. That’s what made Pittodrie so very, very special.

Then Stewart Milne. Then you are forgiven.

Derek McInnes

Derek McInnes

Derek McInnes Hope! Yes he can! Can he? Yeah probably. Please God don’t let him be another feckin turkey…

Zerouali, Aberdeen F.C.

Zerouali, Aberdeen F.C.

Hicham Zerouali, 17 January 1977 – 4 December 2004.

This illustration was done for the club in about 2000. I did a few illustrations for them that season, including Danish Day with Skovdahl and Kjær.

RIP Zero.

 

renaissance-aberdeen-fc

renaissance-aberdeen-fc

Too soon? Too homo-erotic? Fergie appears to be wearing a surgical gown, and McInnes appears to be cold…

McInnes Aberdeen f.c.

McInnes Aberdeen f.c.

Important to get this in before the second game…