Date: 30th January 2007 at 9:37pm
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Aberdeen will not be bringing in any new players as the transfer deadline looms. Jimmy Calderwood thinks that the return injured quartet Richie Byrne, Zander Diamond, Jamie Smith and Craig Brewster should be enough to carry his team through the season and challenge for Europe.

He is even prepared to lose a few of his fringe players such is his faith in the first team despite the lack of real strength in depth.

Midfielder Jamie Winter has travelled to League 2 strugglers Boston United on trial, Elgin City are keen on defender Davie Donald and Peterhead manager Steve Paterson would like to re-sign Kyle Macauley after a successful loan spell at Balmoor.

Dan Smith is also back at Pittodrie after a short trial with League 1 side Crewe and will provide cover at left back. Early cup exits mean the Dons have just two SPL matches next month, at home against bottom side Dunfermline on February 10 and champions-elect Celtic seven days later.

Calderwood knows that he is playing a dicey game but he knows the value of letting players out to get experience which will help them develop and hopefully enhance their careers ‘Letting some of the younger players out on loan might leave us a little short on numbers, but there are only two league games in February.

‘Do we take the gamble and hope the four are back for the Falkirk game?

‘We have to think about the future of the younger players and try to get them games at a lower level.’

If we can get through the next two matches and we then have these four players coming back, then I would fancy our chances against any team in the SPL.

‘It is down to us keeping everyone fit.’

Calderwood and his coaching staff have been scouting south of the border but has not found rich pickings in the Premiership. He will put his faith in his current team and hope they will be good enough to secure the coveted second spot and Champions League place. One man who thinks so is penalty save hero, ‘keeper Jamie Langfield.

Langfield has assured Dons fans that he and his team mates are still totally convinced they can claim second spot despite the arrival of “saviour” Walter Smith at Ibrox and the experienced internationals he has signed. He insists Aberdeen are good enough but must now go on a run to build on the victory over St. Mirren last Saturday.

‘The trip to St Mirren was a massive game for us, as is the next game against Dunfermline, and we really had to get three points. The fact we did means we have moved back up to third, which is great because a lot of people have written us off.

‘If we can keep grinding out results, like we did at Love Street, I am confident we can stay up there and keep challenging for a place in Europe.

‘Walter Smith’s return to Rangers has probably inspired us a little bit more to keep doing well. Everyone is saying he is going to do a great job there and people will get a lift over the next couple of games from his arrival.

‘But his task there is a long-term one and we think we can keep challenging them. We still have to go to Ibrox, but we are confident we can get a win there. The same applies against all the other teams as well. Hopefully, we can keep picking up points and get into Europe.’

Langfield repaid his managers faith in him as he again played the goalie even after a few dodgy performances. The penalty save from Richard Brittain gave some credibility to Calderwood`s statements that Jamie is the next best Scottish ‘keeper in the SPL to Craig Gordon.



Langfield added: ‘It was good to make the save. I have been taking a bit of stick lately, so to do it was great from a personal point of view. The manager has said I’ve made a few mistakes and, if they continued, he would have to think about dropping me.

‘Any goalkeeper knows there is a chance of that happening and it is up to me to get that kind of thing out of my game. When I do anything wrong, it is highlighted more than it would be if someone else does something wrong.’

‘My confidence has not dipped at all. I’m a goalkeeper and I know I am going to make mistakes. If that kind of thing had happened a couple of years ago, my head might have dropped, but I have matured a bit since then.’