Cooper sees silver lining
Gothenburg Great fancies Dons to pick up a trophy this season
Gothenburg great Neale Cooper is optimistic Aberdeen can go one better this season by capturing some silverware.
Gothenburg Great Neale Cooper is optimistic Aberdeen can go one better this season by winning silverware.
The Dons will look to bounce back from their stalemate with Hearts by defeating Kilmarnock at Pittodrie this weekend ahead of a hugely important match next week.
Derek McInnes’ Reds, who finished second to Celtic in all three domestic competitions last season, travel to Motherwell next Thursday with a place in the semi-finals of the League Cup at stake.
Former Dons midfielder Cooper, 53, believes this year’s team is capable of claiming a trophy this time around.
He said: “They were so close to a trophy last year and I hope they can do it this time. Celtic are very strong and they have extra money to spend after reaching the Champions League group stages.
“They possess so much strength and depth and they still have Moussa Dembele, one of their best players last season, to return from injury.
“We all know it will be very difficult but Aberdeen just have to keep putting pressure on them by winning games. I think they have enough quality to win something this season.
“Next week’s match against Motherwell is hugely important in the context of the season.
“It is strange that you can reach a semi-final by winning only two games but that is the way it is.
“Win at Fir Park and they are only 90 minutes away from another final.
“They will want a good result this weekend against Kilmarnock to make sure they head to Motherwell in fine fettle. I expect them to do that.”
Cooper admitted he feared the worst when sev- eral key players departed Pittodrie in the summer.
But the former Ross County, Peterhead and Hartlepool United manager has been impressed with the replacements signed by McInnes.
He added: “I was concerned when they lost Niall McGinn and Jonny Hayes but the new players look the part.
“They seem to be a strong group and getting Stevie May was a massive signing. He is a very good player.
“Is this squad better than last season? It is too early to tell.
“Any team would miss Jonny Hayes, while Niall McGinn and Ryan Jack were both good servants.
“They have brought in some good players who have done well so far.
“Hopefully, they can win something this season.”
“So close to a trophy last year and I hope they do it this time”
MAY THE FORCE BE WITH YOU: Neale Cooper is looking for more great moments from Dons new attacker Stevie May