Two-strike hero Shinnie still to be persuaded to stay at Pittodrie

Derek McInnes will hope to persuade captain Graeme Shinnie into extending his stay at Aberdeen after his two-goal salvo at St Johnstone on ?Saturday.
Aberdeens Graeme Shinnie celebrates the second of his two goals against St Johnstone on Saturday.Aberdeens Graeme Shinnie celebrates the second of his two goals against St Johnstone on Saturday.
Aberdeens Graeme Shinnie celebrates the second of his two goals against St Johnstone on Saturday.

Midfielder Shinnie fired the Dons ahead against the run of play in the 14th minute before drilling home a low 25-yarder in the 75th minute for his first career double to ensure seventh-placed Saints have now gathered only one point from their last 18.

McInnes could also be tempted to cast around for a free agent to provide defensive cover as injury continues to decimate his backline.

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The Pittodrie outfit have lost knee injury victim Tommie Hoban for the rest of the season, with Shay Logan also braced for ankle surgery. But his makeshift defence was resilient enough to assist in matching an all-time club record of seven successive away wins with a 2-0 triumph in Perth.

After confirming that he has not given up on persuading fans’ favourite Shinnie to sign a new contract, McInnes highlighted the role played by adaptable defender 
Dominic Ball.

“Dom is a boy who always gives you a level of performance,” he said. “Full-back is not his natural position but he can do it. He is always ready and he did well against two good players as well as show the composure going forward.”

Centre-back Scott McKenna will return against Hamilton on Wednesday after serving a three-match ban.

“St Johnstone changed to 4-4-2 but we dealt with that but we were kicking ourselves not to get a second goal before we did,” said McInnes. “Once we did from Graeme, with a very good strike, we saw the game out comfortably. It was another big victory for us.

“Graeme has a lot to consider and what is clear is his pride at being Aberdeen captain and he has a connection with the fans.

“He has a lot to consider and hopefully he will continue to be an Aberdeen player.”

Perth boss Tommy Wright, who reckons watching Scotland coach Alex McLeish would have been impressed with defender Jason Kerr, admitted his side paid the price for two lapses in 

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The closest they came to scoring was a Matty Kennedy strike which clipped defender Michael Devlin and rebounded from a post.

“Maybe they should go out and pick me up on Wednesday night against Hibs rather than me having to pick them up,” said Wright.

“They fell short because Aberdeen were more clinical and we made two errors we shouldn’t have. If I was the back four, particularly Jason Kerr, I’d be angry about it.

“He was outstanding – he has been all year. He will go a long way. If he keeps doing well here, he has a big future ahead of him.

“I’m sure Alex (McLeish) could only go away thinking how good he is.”