It seems a bit odd to say Sam Cosgrove needs dropped from the Aberdeen starting XI,  given that he was the Dons’ top scorer last term. The recent RoPS clash showed that’s what Derek McInnes has to do though.

The Dons boss probably watched on in horror as Aberdeen fell behind to an early RoPS strike.

A horror start. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

A Cosgrove penalty and stoppage time Lewis Ferguson strike though ensured Aberdeen’s progression into the second round of the Europa League qualifiers via a 2-1 win. They’ll now face Georgian side Chikhura Sachkhere in the next round.

Last season’s top scorer shouldn’t start the match though.

Aberdeen marksman Cosgrove affects how McInnes plays

He’s a decent enough finisher but his recent performances have shown that Cosgrove can be detrimental to the way McInnes’ team plays.

McInnes’ play accommodates Cosgrove. (Photo by Scott Baxter/Getty Images)

With the ex-Carlisle United man up top, the Dons hit it towards him in hope he can flick it on to Ryan Hedges and Niall McGinn on the flanks. The problem is that Cosgrove isn’t very good at heading the ball.

His footwork isn’t great either, with his ability to spread the play as a lone striker questionable.

He has to be dropped in search of something new. Going long isn’t working for Aberdeen. They need to play with the ball on the deck. That won’t happen if Cosgrove is up front himself.

McInnes can make Aberdeen play more football without Cosgrove

McInnes can make Aberdeen play more football without Cosgrove. (Photo by Scott Baxter/Getty Images)

Perhaps calling James Wilson into the side would be better. He can move a defence around with his pace and pressing, plus he’s much better technically. It might make McInnes’ side a bit more appealing to watch

Cosgrove scored lots last season for the Dons but his ability is still questionable. To unlock the qualities of attacking players around him though, a drop to the bench is needed.

Have something to tell us about this article?