James McPake plans to be positive in his Dundee team selection for Sunday’s Betfred Cup clash with Aberdeen as he refuses to have his side “sit in and try soak up the pressure”.
The Dark Blues topped their Betfred Cup group after two wins and two draws but without conceding a goal and were rewarded for that with a home draw against top-flight Aberdeen.
The Dens gaffer knows just how tough it will be against Derek McInnes’ men but will send his side out on the front foot on Sunday.
He said: “We are at home, we need to be positive and go at them.
“We can’t get caught up in that they are a league above us.
“It’s a good test for us and a cup-tie we want to win.
“It’s not one where we’re going to sit in and try to soak up the pressure and hit them on the counter. We are at home and need to pick the right team and system so our fans can see we’ve had a go.”
Despite the Dons having a big Europa League clash tonight, McPake expects to face a full-strength Aberdeen side for a place in the quarter-finals.
“Derek McInnes always plays his big guns in the cup,” he added.
“It’s a big competition regardless where you are or what league you are in – it’s one of the major competitions.
“Aberdeen have had success in this cup and been unlucky in the Scottish Cup over the last few seasons as well.
“We are expecting nothing other than a full-strength Aberdeen on Sunday, as strong a side as they can put out anyway.
“Derek has built a strong squad and has quality throughout it.
“I’ve seen them a couple of times and I like the way they are set up.
“It’s a tough one for us.”
The Dark Blues made it to the quarter-final stage two years ago where they met an in-form Celtic side and the Dens gaffer is desperate to give Dundee fans a cup run to enjoy.
He added: “I said at the start we wanted to get through our Betfred Cup group and we wanted a home tie in the next round, which we have got.
“It will be a big crowd, the crowd last Saturday was great, and they’ll bring plenty with them as well.
“It’s a game we are really looking forward to, there will be a great atmosphere and a real cup-tie feel.”