Charlie Adam has cut a frustrated figure over the past six weeks.
Sidelined by a groin injury picked up at the end of August and forced to watch on as Dundee picked up just one point and scored only one goal in the five matches he missed.
However, he took that frustration out on Aberdeen on Saturday as he made a roaring return to the team.
And his comeback coincided with the Dark Blues’ first three points of the season with his Man of the Match display helping the side to an “outstanding” 2-1 victory.
“I loved being back playing,” Adam said.
“It was a big challenge – Aberdeen are one of the top five clubs in this country.
“They are in a process that’s been difficult for them but it’s been difficult for us, too, sat at the bottom.
“It’s been tough to take and even worse sitting on the sidelines and not being able to contribute.
“It was nice to get back out and it was important to get back winning.
“The performance was outstanding.”
Challenge of youth
Adam was in supreme form, particularly in the first half, as he drove his side on from the middle of the park.
Supporters delighted in taunting Dons counterpart Scott Brown as he failed to nullify his former Scotland team-mate.
However, Adam was more concerned with matching up against the youthfulness of recent national team call-up Lewis Ferguson.
“If I perform to the capabilities I can, I know the team will play well,” Adam added.
“I just enjoy playing football and it’s good to test yourself against young boys coming through like Lewis Ferguson.
“It’s nice at 35 to test whether you can test yourself against these young lads and that drives me on every week.”
Turning the away support
The home support were in full voice as a crowd of 6,878 braved the weather and shrugged off the unusual 6pm kick-off.
None more so than when Leigh Griffiths and then Luke McCowan put Dundee 2-0 up early in the second half.
That prompted a section of the away crowd to leave Dens Park as Aberdeen headed for their fifth-straight defeat.
Dundee finally secured their first league win of the season with a 2-1 victory over Aberdeen at Dens Park, to move off the foot of the table! pic.twitter.com/EtQoIoTNlq
— Sky Sports Scotland (@ScotlandSky) October 16, 2021
And there was plenty of anger from the remaining Dons towards their team and manager Stephen Glass.
Adam revealed making the most of the negativity surrounding Aberdeen right now was intentional.
He said: “That was part of the plan. There’s big pressure. They have invested well and they have to handle the big pressure.
“We knew if we came with a gameplan and kept with the right way of playing we’d cause them problems.
“It showed because we were the far better team and deserved the victory.”
Now the plan is to make this one victory into two and beyond says Adam.
They face Hearts, Ross County and St Mirren in a bumper game week before the end of the month.
“One win springboards you now – look at St Mirren who have won three on the bounce now,” the Dens skipper added.
“That’s the momentum you take.
“You have to keep going. Tynecastle next week will be tough, they got a great point at Rangers and then we have Ross County at Dens the Wednesday after.
“It’s a tough period but that win will give the lads confidence to know they can compete in this Premiership and win games.”