Barry Robson reveals Aberdeen transfer strategy and how he will look to cut down loan market reliance

The Dons finished third and will return to the European arena next season.

Barry Robson wants to build an Aberdeen squad for the long term and will look to cut down on loan signings this summer.

The Dons finished third and will return to the European arena next season. New boss Robson is about to enter his first transfer window and knows he needs to bolster his team to help them progress domestically – and they also have the potential of European football until Christmas if Celtic lift the Scottish Cup today. He has to fill the void of the eight players that the Dons had on loan last season – Leighton Clarkson, Graeme Shinnie, Liam Scales, Mattie Pollock, Dilan Markanday, Patrik Myslovic, Hayden Coulson and Jay Gorter.

Robson is keen to sign Clarkson and Shinnie on a permanent basis while finances are likely to price them out of moves for Scales and Pollock. He said: “We’d like to cut the loan players down but we also know loans are important. Sometimes you can get players in on loan you couldn’t afford who can improve the squad, help younger players and enhance the squad.”

Robson has already signed Nicky Devlin on a free from Livingston and the Dons have tabled their best offer to Dutch defender Jay Izdes. The ex-Go Ahead Eagles ace has had the offer for several weeks and will make a decision on his return to holiday. There was Italian interest in him but that has now cooled.

Robson wants the bulk of business done early but accepts that might not be possible. He said: “Ideally we’d like everyone there for the start of pre-season but that won’t be the case at any club in Britain, even the top ones.

“We’ll try to get the right players in and sometimes that means waiting, even until after pre-season. We’ll try to get the majority in as quickly as we can and build a base. It’s not easy to sign players and it has to be the right type of player.

“You don’t just see a player you want and go out and sign them, there’s a lot of things you have to look into before that. Finances too, players have to move if they’re coming from England. Or even up to Aberdeen if they’re a Scottish player. We’re a progressive club and like to sell that to any targets we’ve got.”

Aberdeen will lose head of recruitment Darren Mowbray to Southampton at the end of the month. The Dons are well on with their summer targets but Robson is keen for his club to appoint a replacement as soon as possible.

He added: “I’m hopeful we’ll do well on the recruitment, we have a lot of players in different positions we’re looking at. I’m fussy. You can get someone who is mentally and physically right but it still doesn’t work at a club. Sometimes people don’t adapt and it takes time to bed in. So we look in depth at every aspect. If you do that it gives you the best chance of success.”

Chief executive Alan Burrows hailed the Red Army for smashing their season-ticket sales record just two days into June, with more than 9300 books snapped up.