Ex-Aberdeen star Dougie Bell tips Dons for title

Peter Pawlett charges off to celebrate his goal with Ryan Jack (left). But can the Dons mount a title challenge? Picture: SNS
Peter Pawlett charges off to celebrate his goal with Ryan Jack (left). But can the Dons mount a title challenge? Picture: SNS
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FORMER Aberdeen star Dougie Bell believes the Dons have a “good chance” of winning the Scottish Premiership this season.

Bell was part of Sir Alex Ferguson’s Pittodrie side which won the title in 1985 - the last team to break the Old Firm stranglehold on the competition.

With Rangers trying to make their way back through the leagues - after re-emerging at the bottom tier following their descent into administration and liquidation - most people in the game expected Celtic to enjoy a procession to their fourth successive championship win this season.

However, Aberdeen’s 1-0 win at Inverness on Sunday was their fifth successive in the league since losing 2-1 at home to Ronny Deila’s side in November and took them to within two points of the champions, who drew a frustrating blank at home to Ross County on Saturday.

Derek McInnes’ side could go top on New Year’s Day against St Johnstone - even if only for a few hours as Celtic’s kick-off at Partick Thistle is later in the day - and Bell insists they could capture their first championship in 30 years.

“I was at the Aberdeen versus Celtic game about a month ago at Pittodrie and I thought that was big result for Celtic,” he told Press Association Sport.

“But since then Aberdeen have kept winning and Celtic are beginning to struggle a bit so Aberdeen definitely have a good chance.

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“Celtic didn’t start the season well then went on a good run but have they seem to be struggling while Aberdeen seem to be getting stronger and stronger.

“It is the first time in a long time they have had a chance and I would imagine they would be getting more confident.

“A few of my pals who are Celtic fans thought their team would win it easy but it is not working out like that. They don’t look that great just now.

“If Aberdeen beat St Johnstone and go top at new year, they will have a right good chance.”

Peter Pawlett avoids talk of Aberdeen title chase

Bell believes last season’s League Cup final win over Inverness under McInnes, which saw the first trophy in 19 years taken back to Pittodrie, could be the platform for a title win.

The former Rangers and Hibernian player said: “Winning the League Cup last year seems to have given them confidence.

“Craig Brown and Archie Knox (had) done quite a good job stabilising Aberdeen and I think McInnes has picked up from there.

“They defend well, work hard for each other and seem to have good attacking options.

“Adam Rooney has done well, Niall McGinn has scored a few goals and they seem to have depth to their squad as well. If there are injuries they seem to have players who can come in.”

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