Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes hailed his side as they eased into the international break with a fourth win on the bounce – 1-0 against Hibernian – despite difficult conditions at Pittodrie.
Gary Mackay-Steven got the only goal of the game five minutes from the interval, pouncing on a loose pass from Ryan Porteous and rifling home from 25 yards.
And McInnes feels his winger, who joins up with the Scotland squad this week, is up their with the best in the Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership.
The Dons manager said: “It was always going to be a difficult game and the conditions were as we expected. The importance of winning the game was clear, and the workrate and industry at the top end of the pitch allowed us to unsettle Hibs.
“We limited their opportunities to have an impact on the game. Chances were always going to be at a premium, but we’ve capitalised on a loose pass from their boy, and Gary has a brilliant finish.
“It was important Gary delivered a performance tonight. He’s got to feel that importance of being a big player for us and be relevant. He’s capable of big moments and goes into the international squad on the back of starting the season very well.
“If he gets the chance to play he’ll be ready. For me, when he reaches his levels he’s as good a wide player as we’ve got in the league.”
Hibs boss Neil Lennon admits his side have dropped off in recent weeks, but had little complaint with his side’s performance, feeling they deserved to take something from the game.
He said: “In the second half we missed three good chances to get back in the game, and I don’t remember our goalkeeper being bothered in the second half. We’ve conceded a poor goal when we’re in comfortable possession which is very frustrating.
“To be fair to the players, five of our last six games have been away from home and three of those have been Hearts, Aberdeen and Celtic. I think we can do better, but the only disappointing performance was St Johnstone last week.
“That’s three games now where we haven’t scored and that’s not like us at all. It’s not as if we’re not creating chances, but there’s not a lot wrong. I’m not going to whip them for that today – maybe the centre-forwards!”