McInnes: We forgot to play

23 April 2013 06:50

Derek McInnes claimed his players were so keen to impress him in his first game as Aberdeen boss that they "forgot to play" against Hibernian in their goalless Clydesdale Bank Premier League encounter at Easter Road.

The Dons stayed one point ahead of Pat Fenlon's side in eighth place although it was the home side who created and missed most of the chances. Dons keeper Jamie Langfield pulled off a good save from Hibs top scorer Leigh Griffiths late in the game, after Eoin Doyle had smacked the post just after the break, but the visitors ultimately held out.

"I thought it was a committed performance and there was lot of effort from the players," said McInnes.

"When a new a manager comes in there can be that energy to show themselves and I think they were a bit frantic, more than a bit frantic at times, and I thought maybe we forgot to play. I thought we were well worthy of the point but didn't do enough to win the game.

"It was probably a performance and result which shows you where we are at the minute and there is certainly work to be done. It ended up being a game of two teams going toe-to-toe and I think both teams deserved their point.

"You always have to take the positive of the clean sheet but we wanted to win the game so you come away only half-pleased. We have to show more composure in all areas of the pitch at times but I have to credit my players for their appetite for the game. But it didn't tell me anything that I didn't already know."

Fenlon was happy enough with his side's performance but reminded his players that they still have a William Hill Scottish Cup final place against Celtic at Hampden next month to keep them motivated, as well as aiming to finish the best of the rest in the bottom six.

"We have so much to play for," said the Irishman. "We want to finish seventh, we still have Hearts to play and we have a cup final to look forward to so it shouldn't be difficult for anyone to keep themselves focused. And if they want to play in the cup final then if they get the chance to play then they give their all and get to the levels that we want."

Fenlon rightly claimed that his side edged the game in terms of opportunities created but was pleased with the clean sheet as much as anything else.

"It wasn't a classic game but on chances I think we shaded it," he said. "Their keeper made a great save from Leigh late on and Doyle hit the post. We had been conceding too many goals, three last week, three the game before that and four the week before that, so it was important that we got back to defending well, so that was probably the most pleasing aspect."

Source: PA