Aberdeen manager Jim Goodwin admitted there is a lack of confidence among the playing squad at Pittodrie after a controversial 2-1 defeat to Livingston in the cinch Premiership on Saturday.
Livi goalkeeper Max Stryjek escaped a red card for his clash with Vicente Besuijen just moments before Nicky Devlin slid the visitors into the lead.
Jason Holt doubled the visitors’ advantage from the penalty spot before Aberdeen midfielder Ross McCrorie was sent off for a second bookable offence. Scotland international Lewis Ferguson netted a late consolation from the penalty spot.
Goodwin reflected on the defeat, saying: “I can’t dress it up any other way. I thought we were the better team, and the boys gave their all.
“I think there’s a real lack of confidence throughout the group and it’s there for all to see.
“We have to dust ourselves down and look forward to Dundee. We need a win, it’s as simple as that.
“There seems to be a bit of bad luck, but that’s part and parcel of football. We have to go again – we can’t feel sorry for ourselves.”
Livingston assistant manager Marvin Bartley took charge of the team in the absence of ill manager David Martindale, and insists his squad are looking up rather than down as they went five points clear of the Dons, and 10 clear of the relegation play-off place.
Only goal difference separates them from seventh-placed Hibs and Bartley said: “Until it’s mathematically impossible for us to go down you can’t be too sure, but we’re looking up the way.
“Hibs have a better goal difference than us at the moment. We’ve spoken a lot about being best of the rest both in the dressing room and in the media – we now have to go and do that on the pitch.”