Last season’s 3rd and 4th placed teams both lost their opening day derbies so will be trying to put those matches behind them and get their first points on the board.
Jimmy Calderwood to Reds Online, ‘Regardless of what happens on Sunday I would expect both Aberdeen and Hearts to be there or thereabouts at the business end of the season.
‘One result hasn’t changed that view, nor will two. However, we both want to get off the mark as soon as possible.
‘Whoever wins will know that the other will still be one of their main rivals at the end of the season.
We’re at home on Sunday, so that will mean more emphasis on attacking Hearts and putting them under pressure from the start.
‘It’s important we set the pace and get players forward in wide areas to stretch their defence.’
Jimmy Calderwood on Craig Gordon’s move to Sunderland.
Craig is a great goalkeeper who is going right to the top and it’s a fantastic move for him.
‘But Hearts have a ready made replacement waiting in the wings to replace him.
‘Steve came into the team for the Hibs match and wasn’t at fault for the goal and will be ready for the challenge on Sunday.
‘I’ve seen him play before and he has always been impressive, so Craig’s absence won’t be such a big blow after all’
Jimmy Calderwood on Derek Young. ‘Derek is just a little behind the others in terms of his fitness levels.
‘But you always know exactly what you are going to get from Derek in every game.
‘However, starting him in a game like the Hearts one might be a little bit too much but he could feature on the bench.
Scott Severin To RedWeb, With having lost the opening game, it’s important we get things off to a good start at Pittodrie on Sun day in front of a big crowd. After a couple of games last season, we were sat on two points, so if we can win this one, we’ll be a wee bit ahead of that and that’ll put us back on course.’
Jeffrey De Visscher to RedWeb, ‘last Saturday was very disappointing because we did not play as well as we should. For me, I have thought about that first game for weeks so it was very exciting before it, and then when I saw all the Aberdeen fans in the stadium, it was unbelievable. Half the stadium was red and when I came off the bench they gave me a big welcome so that is a very positive thing. In Holland you do not have that, but here you immediately fall in love with the fans because they are so incredible.’
Stephen Frail to BBC Sport.
We are very disappointed to lose the opening game of the season when you have done all your hard work in pre-season and everything is geared to this game against your local rivals,’ Frail told BBC Sport.
‘It could not be a worse night and we need to dust ourselves down and get ourselves ready for Sunday’s game against Aberdeen.’
Aberdeen Team News:
Aberdeen have a clean health slate besides Richie Byrne of course and after last weeks strikers firing blanks, Jimmy Calderwood is toying with playing Jeffrey De Visscher and Craig Brewster up front.
Player to watch: Jeffrey De Visscher
Jeffrey should make his home debut and after receiving a tremendous ovation at Tannadice when he came on as sub, the Dutchman will be keen to make an impact.
Hearts Team News:
Christophe Berra has been named as Hearts new captain and will become the SPL’s youngest current skipper.
ichal Pospisil has been allowed to join Dutch outfit NEC Nijmegen on trial but Andrius Velicka is apparently staying for the time being.
9 year old Jamie Mole has moved to Queen of the South on loan until the end of December.
Player to watch: Steve Banks
At 35, replacing Britain’s most expensive ever ‘keeper will be some task but Banks has proven himself before in big matches with Hearts but lets hope he has plenty opportunity to do so again.
Match Facts & Stats
Iain Brines. The 6’2′ police officer is delighted he is involved in top flight football after admitting to the SFA website, ‘Not having been graced with a lot of football talent I have the chance to be part of the game I love at a very high level. To be able to lead teams out on to the park irrespective of the venue always has the hairs on my neck standing out. There`s no better feeling’.
The Dons can look forward to banking 3 points in next Sunday’s home match with Champions Celtic.