Jim Goodwin is adamant Aberdeen aren’t out of the relegation woods yet.
The Dons boss, who is looking for five new players in the summer when a clearout of his underachieving squad will take place, believes a win over Livingston on Saturday can set a positive tone for the remainder of the campaign but knows that any further slip- ups could start alarm bells ringing.
He said: “I wouldn’t dare be as arrogant to think we are too big a club to get dragged into that kind of thing.
“Certain clubs in the past have all been there – the likes of Hibs, Hearts and Dundee United.
“After the Ross County game I made it clear to the players that none of us should be thinking about going on holiday or easing off now that we are coming to the end of the season.
“We still have a hell of a lot of football to play and we need to go and win games.
“We need to get those wins on the board as early as possible to pull ourselves away from that bottom of the table.
“But also to try to secure seventh place, the best of the rest.
“It has been a very disappointing season. There is no getting away from that.”
Despite that, Goodwin believes he can still lure quality players to the Granite City – even without the carrot of European football being dangled in front of them.
He added: “We need four or five good players to come in to strengthen the squad in the summer and add that freshness to it.
“I do think if you are involved in European competition that would certainly be an attraction for players coming in.
“However I do think the players we have had a dialogue with up to now are very understanding of the situation.
“Prior to this year the club have been very consistent in terms of where they have been in terms of league positioning.
“Half decent cup runs and being involved in Europe.
“Every team is allowed to have a blip from time to time.
“You see it all over Europe, all over the world.
“You see it down in the Premier League now with Manchester United, a club that had been successful for a number of years.
“There is always a transition period at every single club. We are in that position right now at Aberdeen.
“We had a need for things to be freshened up a bit. That is no disrespect to the guys who are here. All of them have done a great job for Aberdeen over the years.
“But there comes a time in everyone’s career when that change needs to be made.
“As a manager I need to make those difficult decisions but every single decision I make will be in the best interests of the football club and that is what I will continue to do.
“The guys behind the scenes are doing a lot of great work.
“We have a really good team behind us here with director of football Steven Gunn and Darren Mowbray, the head of recruitment.
“Along with myself we are spending hours and hours scouring the market to make sure we get things right in the summer.
“That is inevitably where teams are successful or not – when you get that recruitment right.”
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Aberdeen will be without Dylan McGeouch and Matty Kennedy for the visit of Livi.
Goodwin added: “We won’t be doing any experimenting. We will play what I believe is the strongest 11 on the day. It’s as simple as that.
“We are in a situation where we need to win as many of these games as possible. Everybody below us is fighting for their lives. There are no easy games.
“Livingston will give us a very competitive game of football but we have to go out and play to the best of our ability and hopefully that will be enough to get us three points.”
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.