There won’t have been a much more intimidating person to walk through the dressing room door than new manager Terry Butcher.
Having played against him as a player and heard him express the standard he expects as a coach, everyone at the club is sure to benefit from his leadership skills and enthusiasm for the game. We now have a man at the helm who has played at the very top level and has delivered great success during his reign as Inverness manager – despite having a shoestring budget to work with.
Leaving the Highland club in such a healthy position to take over the hot seat at Easter Road shows just how much potential he must see at Hibs. The challenge of bringing back the glory days was obviously too enticing to pass up as these chances don’t present themselves too often in football.
Having served his management apprenticeship with a number of clubs, he now possesses the experience that will hopefully make the impact we all desire. However, he will quickly learn that the demands placed on his shoulders are much bigger than anywhere else he has encountered as a manager, and this is an aspect of the job I believe he will relish.
As a player he led by example, constantly striving to get more from his team-mates and if he replicates the passion he showed out on the park then we definitely have made the correct appointment.
Many Hibs supporters had spent the week prior to Saturday’s visit to Paisley predicting the manager’s first starting XI and he certainly sprung a few surprises in naming his team. Awarding the captain’s armband to Liam Craig has indicated he has his own ideas on who he feels represents the club in the correct manner. The introduction of players that have been in cold storage suggests he is ready to give some the opportunity to resurrect their careers at Easter Road and as a professional, that’s all you can ask for.
The point collected against St Mirren is a decent start for the new management team as our opponents have been on a good run of form lately. However, it was a poor game to watch with very little goalmouth action. A share of the points was a fair outcome with Hibs by far the superior after the interval. The manager will know more than anyone what three points can do for his squad and the belief that it can instil. He has always given youth its chance wherever he has been and there is no better man to learn your trade from. It may take a little time to get his points and ideas across as there are so many different perspectives on the game. But knowing Terry, he will concentrate on shutting up shop and then progress things from there. Clean sheets are always a good base to start from and the training ground is where the hard work will begin.
We are all looking forward to seeing the impact Terry will make at the club and hope he and his coaching staff can revitalise the squad and work them into better and more accomplished players. If he manages to find the results on the park, there are still plenty of games and months ahead to salvage something from what has been a very frustrating campaign. It is, of course, not a quick and easy fix, but he has time on his side to get things in motion.
On Saturday, we begin this season’s Scottish Cup campaign with a tricky tie at Ross County. We don’t boast a good record up there, but this is a match we are more than capable of winning. This will be our new management team’s first occasion of not facing the Staggies in a Highland derby but there is still the pressure of guiding Hibs into the next round of the cup to contend with. Having lost to Hearts in the League Cup at the end of last month, it is important we don’t crash out early in this competition.