Derek McInnes’ Aberdeen tenure deserves respect given he’s now managed to stay in the job for seven years.
Throughout that period, he’s managed to end the Dons’ 19-year wait for a trophy with his League Cup success back in 2014. He’s also led Aberdeen to four second-place finishes and two further third-place spots in the Premiership.
You have to admire his longevity in the role considering the cut-throat nature of football management nowadays. He’s the longest-serving manager in the league, and he deserves to have hats tipped in his direction.
However, it’s fair to say that the football at Pittodrie has gotten stale this season. McInnes’ Aberdeen are struggling in fourth place and have failed to score in any of their last five matches.
Sam Cosgrove has netted 21 goals this season, but they’ve been overly reliant on him. Behind him in the scoring charts is Niall McGinn with five (Transfermarkt). They just don’t have the creative talent they once did under McInnes when the likes of Kenny McLean, Jonny Hayes, and Gary Mackay-Steven were running riot for them.
And with Celtic coming to town on Sunday, a lack of goals in your team certainly isn’t a welcome aspect for McInnes.
Their recent slump, which extends to a run of just two wins in 12, has come down to poor recruitment from the Aberdeen manager. He brought in the likes of Ryan Hedges, Curtis Main, Craig Bryson, Greg Leigh, Funso Ojo, and Jon Gallagher in the summer. Every single one of them have failed to make an impact, and that’s not even the full list.
It also appears as though some of their supporters are running out of patience with McInnes too. Here’s a look at some of their comments on social media in recent days:
Retweeting this after every game till McInnes gets sacked https://t.co/spoEuy1ned
— Blane (@Blano_) February 6, 2020
Waiting for McInnes to get sacked like… pic.twitter.com/03kYFgZC11
— Grumpy Scot 🏴 (@grumpy_scot1) February 5, 2020
The frustration comes from doing the same thing over and over. There’s no willingness to attempt anything new or different. Sideways passes with a hoof to Cosgrove is ineffective and predictable.
— Scott Walker (@ScottW75) February 9, 2020
McInnes knew the issue was creativity and he did nothing to address it in the window. He shopped out Wilson who would’ve been a better creative option in the 10 role than some non-footballer like Gallagher.
— Robbie Hanratty (@RHanratty99) February 6, 2020
The only defence that folk seem to have for McInnes is that “it could be worse”. But they are completely ignoring the fact that with the available resources “it could be a whole lot better!”.
There are Hundreds of potential candidates out there, we need to take the leap. pic.twitter.com/zdpUouTFRU
— Just_Chalky (@ChalkyJust) February 5, 2020
McInnes has even come under some criticism from Dons legend Willie Miller. Miller was on BBC Sportsound last night discussing the situation (10/02), and even he admitted that the situation was bleak:
“At this moment in time with the results he’s had recently he’s underachieving. That doesn’t mean to say that by the end of the season he’ll be underachieving.
“But when you’re only beating Dumbarton at home, four minutes to go, and it’s a penalty that wins you the game…You then get beat by Motherwell at home – what do you expect the fans to do? Do you expect them to cheer?”
There is increasing unrest from Dons supporters to what’s being served up at Pittodrie. And another doing off Celtic on Sunday would ramp up that pressure once again. Especially considering a failure to perform against us has always been one of the negatives against him (The Scotsman).
Of course, the Dons face Hamilton at the Foys Stadium tonight as they look to end their five-game scoreless run. But even three points there won’t get him much credit. That’s a game they should be running all over.
Celtic may not be the game that gets McInnes sacked. However, it certainly won’t help the growing rage from some in his support. A heavy loss heading into a Scottish Cup replay at Rugby Park has the potential to be an absolute disaster for the Dons. And one thing’s for sure, he won’t be getting any favours from the Hoops.