Jim Goodwin revealed he was hit by a coin thrown from visiting Aberdeen fans before his first game as Dundee United manager.
The Irishman, who was sacked by the Dons in January, was is in the dugout against his former club in Saturday night’s late kick-off.
After the game, that finished in a 3-1 defeat for United who remain routed at the bottom of the Premiership, Goodwin said he was targeted by “bad eggs” among the 3,000 travelling support who were throwing projectiles including pies and a cup of juice towards him and his staff.
The Tangerines had the better of the first half but fell behind to a Duk goal after the break before late strikes by McCrorie and Watkins sealed the win for Barry Robson’s men.
But, despite the defeat, he insists he seen enough of his new side to give him “hope and positivity” for the rest of the season.
Speaking after the game he said: “I obviously wasn’t expecting a warm reception from the Aberdeen fans.
“But I was disappointed that there were coins and other projectiles getting chucked down on top of me.
“There was a pie, a cup of juice, a couple of coins and unfortunately one of them landed on the top of my head.
“Thankfully it was nothing serious but not what you want when you go to your work.
“I have to say that it is definitely just a minority. There are always a few bad eggs who tarnish the rest of the club.
“Aberdeen is a terrific club and one of the best supported in the country – 2,500-3,000 of them down the road tonight supporting their team but a few mindless idiots have us talking about stuff we don’t want to be talking about.
“It was disappointing but I am not going to go over the top with it and I am sure it will be dealt with.”
It was Goodwin’s first game in charge of United but he saw enough from his side in defeat to believe they can lift themselves off the bottom of the table and beat the drop.
He said: “For any professional sportsperson, the minimum requirement is maximum effort. I got that from the boys, right up to the end.
“I know people don’t like stats and the only stat that matters more often than not is the scoreline.
“That’s all people will talk about but we’ve had 24 attempts on goal and more possession.
“But the bottom line is we didn’t capitalise on the good opportunities we had and that’s the bit that’s hurting us most.
“I can’t be too hard on them. If I didn’t think they were trying or if I didn’t think there was a reaction to what we were asking, then you’d be really concerned.
“But we saw enough fight and determination to give me hope and positivity.”
Goodwin’s attention has already turned to Wednesday night’s trip to Livingston with United looking to close the four-point gap on the two sides immediately above them in the table, Kilmarnock and Ross County.
The 41-year-old added: “This is the game in hand that gets us back on an even keel in terms of games played.
“It’s another difficult game. We’ve got some decisions to make with Wednesday coming round pretty quickly.
“We’ll assess the squad and see what it looks like. We’re missing one or two through injury.”
Barry Robson took over as interim Aberdeen boss after Goodwin’s sacking and the win at Tannadice was his third victory in five games with the Dons now up to fifth.
And the 44-year-old insists there is even more to come from his players.
Robson said: “For me, I saw it in their eyes – I have seen it in training recently too – that they really want to go to war for you.
“They want to go to war for their club. At this stage of the season the way the pitches are, they have managed to do that.
“But listen, we will get better and better.”