Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes
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Another season in second is in store for Aberdeen

| 24.07.2015

A first top-two finish in over 20 years for Aberdeen last season can be the catalyst for a return to the Scottish football’s top table.

The glory days of the 1980s may be all but a distant memory for the Dons fans, but there were signs last season that a revival of sorts was on the horizon.

The omission of Rangers from the Ladbrokes Premiership will obviously have helped the Pittodrie side stake for a higher place in the table but they themselves have been making steady steps.

Adam Rooney has been a revelation since signing from Oldham, bagging 25 goals in 50 league appearances for the club, and topped the league’s scoring charts with 18 strikes last season.

With Niall McGinn, Peter Pawlett and David Goodwillie all chipping in with at least five goals each, there is plenty of attacking threat throughout their team.

But it has been their business in the summer that could see Derek McInnes’s side land the ‘Betting without Celtic’ honours once again at 4/7.

While they haven’t been prolific, the acquisition of a couple of highly-rated full backs will only strengthen their position at the head of the chasing pack.

Paul Quinn had a decent season in helping Ross County to a credible ninth place last season and will add plenty of competition to places, joining on a free transfer.

The marquee signing to arrive at Pittodrie this season though is undoubtedly Graeme Shinnie.
Inverness Caledonian Thistle’s player of the year during the last campaign ended his career at Caley in the best possible way by skippering them to victory in the Scottish Cup final.

His contribution to the Highland outfit went much further than that though. Solid defensive displays added to two goals and seven assists in the Premiership made him hot property.

Aberdeen have been the lucky beneficiaries of a man who will undoubtedly be playing international football in years to come if keeping up the same form.

He could be the difference in landing a very good bet for backers of Aberdeen on Ladbrokes’ Divisional Handicap betting.

Had the teams in the league been given the same handicap last season as they have for 2015-16, the Dons would have finished in third, five points behind Caley and two points behind Dundee.

But with the former’s star asset now switching sides, one can expect the 21 points head-start the bookies are giving Aberdeen to be enough to land the odds of 8/1.

A challenge on Celtic’s grip on the title looks a massive ask, but their quality over quantity approach to summer transfers could see them solidify their strength in the upper echelons of the table.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Ben Stones

Ladbrokes News’ equine expert, Ben likes nothing more than studying the form to pick out a winner or two for our readers. A Journalism and Media Studies graduate from the University of Winchester, Ben has previously written for a number of football and racing blogs and websites, as well as contributing to the sports pages of his home-town newspaper.