PAT FENLON has warned his Easter Road stars they are “up there to be shot at” after taking the SPL unawares with their promising start to the season.
Hibs stretched their unbeaten run to five matches with a hard-fought victory over Kilmarnock, a result which propelled them into second place in the table, just a point behind leaders Motherwell.
The visit of Inverness Caledonian Thistle this weekend presents Fenlon’s side with the opportunity to extend that run even further, but the Hibs boss believes their lofty position will make opposing teams all the more determined to knock them off their perch.
Although Caley have suffered a somewhat stuttering start to the season – taking just four points from their opening six matches – Fenlon insisted no-one should be fooled by those statistics. He said: “I saw Inverness at St Mirren a few weeks ago [a 2-2 draw] and I thought they are a very, very decent side. Terry Butcher has lost a few players, but he has brought in some decent ones.”
And while Hibs are where Fenlon believes a club of their size should be in terms of league position, he is well aware being at that end of the table brings a different type of pressure to that experienced by his players last season as they battled to avoid the threat of relegation.
He said: “When you are up there you are there to be shot at and that’s what we have to deal with. It’s where we should be, but we won’t get carried away.”
If Hibs have caught others by surprise thus far, Fenlon insisted there was no great secret to their early season success. He added: “We have honest players. They have ability, are technically good and they work hard for each other.”