Ofir Marciano has urged Hibs supporters not to panic about their current form dip as he is adamant the team will swiftly rediscover their early-season poise.
After starting their Championship campaign with five consecutive victories, the title favourites have taken only two points from their past three matches.
Hibs have scored only two goals during this period and, although red cards hindered Neil Lennon’s team against both Ayr United and Queen of the South, concern has risen among supporters that this season may be more hazardous to negotiate than initially perceived by many.
Goalkeeper Marciano acknowledges there is plenty room for improvement in his team’s recent performance levels but he sees no reason why they can’t rediscover the cutting edge that brought them ten goals in their opening four league matches.
“We get a lot of chances, dominate the games and play well but we have been unlucky in the last part of the pitch in our last few games,” said the Israeli. “We still have to be better but we are a good team so I am not worried. I know that it’s going to change and we are going to score goals so we just need to stick together, keep working hard and stay positive. There is no panic.”
Despite his team’s recent blip, Marciano, on a season-long loan from Ashdod, is enjoying his time in Scotland. “I like what I see here and I like how people see the football here,” he said. “It’s very professional. I like that even when you go to a place like Turriff, way up north, you still see how people like football there. Everywhere you go here, you can see how much people love the game – it’s very nice.”
The high standards of manager Lennon are also helping Marciano as he strives to get back to his best following a frustrating season on the sidelines with Belgian club Mouscron-Peruwelz. “He told me from the start that he was going to be push me to the limit, and I like that,” said Marciano. “Every training session he requires you to do your best and as a professional footballer you want that, you want people to push you to be better every day.
“I like that, I know he is trying to make me a better player. He can be critical but you have to take the criticism and use it in a positive way. That’s the way I take it and I am enjoying playing under him. The big thing is I know he wants the best for me, he wants the best for everyone.He wants his team to be better every day so criticism is a good thing.”
Marciano, who feels like he is improving all the time at Hibs, is philosophical about missing out on a recall to the Israeli squad for the World Cup qualifiers against Macedonia and Liechtenstein over the next few days. “Everything happens for a reason and I am sure it is for the best,” he said of his omission. “I need to work hard and be better and I am sure if I do when the next games come around I will be there.”