This piece is an extract from yesterday's The Dandies newsletter, which is emailed out at 6pm every Tuesday.

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I am ready to push the panic button after Sunday’s woeful defeat against Kilmarnock, not quite, but fingers are hovering ever closer.

Aberdeen head into Wednesday night’s clash at Fir Park against Motherwell winless in four games in all competitions. After beating Rangers, I fully expected us to kick on and start taking the fight to the top two, sadly we have done the complete opposite and it’s a trend that must stop.

Sunday’s defeat against Kilmarnock was one of the worst performances I have seen of any Aberdeen side over the recent past. The side looked devoid of structure, ideas, and any sort of cutting edge; to deploy the long ball tactic never gave us a chance and it never will.

We are so much better than that, even on a sticky, plastic surface! I don’t want to hear excuses that “we can’t play through them” what sort of message does that send to our technically gifted players like Leighton Clarkson?

It has been a very challenging past week for the Dons who suffered a heart-breaking defeat against POAK in the Europa Conference League prior to Sunday’s game.

Barry Robson’s use of substitutions when in a commanding lead and looking like we could see the game out left many Dons fans questioning his tactics and game management.

Then, by his own admission, Robson professed he got his team selection wrong against Kilmarnock. In this very same column last time around (pre POAK) I backed Barry to get it right, to become his own man and take us to the next level but my concerns are growing game by game.

The stats don’t lie, after Sunday’s game it is now 20 consecutive League games where Aberdeen have gone on to lose after conceding the first goal. Mind-boggling. But what’s more concerning is that Robson now only has a 24 percent-win record since taking over the job full-time – the worst record of any Dons manager. In fear of repeating myself this trend must stop.

He now faces a huge week ahead starting with Wednesday’s tricky tie against Motherwell who themselves have struggled for form recently and then Saturday’s massive League Cup semi-final against Hibs at Hampden; two games which could define his future.

He has to get it right or the wolves will pounce. As much as Barry needs to take responsibility for his tactics and game management his players also need to step up and be counted. On Sunday we carried too many passengers, yes, the long ball tactic did not help but we need our big-time players to take the game by the scruff of the neck and make it happen.

Duk has been non-existent for too many games now and needs to be benched, his overall play on Sunday did nothing but frustrate and ultimately ended up with him on his backside waving his arms in the air.

I appreciate that for long spells of the game him and Bojan Miovski were isolated due to our non-existent attacking threat but when presented with any sort of opportunity to get in behind the Killie defence or bring players into play everything broke down.

In my opinion, Ester Sokler deserves his chance from the off on Wednesday evening. I also expect our skipper to be rested for the Fir Park match so we have a fully prepped and fully charged captain ready to lead us out at Hampden.

That leaves us with options in midfield for Wednesday of Connor Barron, Leighton Clarkson, Dante Polvara and Jamie McGrath, I would select all four and give them the grace to express themselves and not have them watch the ball fly over their heads every few seconds.

If we do anything this week, please, keep the ball on the deck! It’s a huge week and by the time this column comes around again, I really hope the vibe will be different.