It would appear at the moment that luck is just not on our side.
To have taken all three points at Motherwell on Friday night would have been a huge result for the club had we managed to hold on to our lead. Despite the new management only seeing 45 minutes of competitive action, I’m sure they would have found some positives from a much-improved performance and will be demanding the same application between now and the end of the season.
Assessing the squad that is capable of pushing us into a safer position in the league will prove a difficult task for the manager. I have previously expressed my view that the requirement of one or two acquisitions in January is a necessity if we have any aspirations of trying to salvage something from our season. We have looked threatening at times, but clean sheets are just as crucial when attempting to build a side as you can’t always be looking to outscore your opponents every week.
Sadly, football doesn’t operate in this way. Time and again we have thrown away leads and I believe this is one area Fenlon and his coaching staff will want to put right immediately. Giving away cheap goals has haunted us far too many times this season.
Formations and tactics are part and parcel of the game but I’ve always felt some managers get caught up in trying to be too imaginative. However, if you can restore some morale to the camp then that often proves to be half the battle. Most would agree that Hibs’ lowly position in the league is unacceptable, but it’s hard to disagree considering some of the performances. As a big club, if you continue to buy in the bargain basement then you will eventually just be recognised as another ordinary football team.
I’ve always said if the club can put a winning football team on the pitch then there is every chance the supporters will turn out in good numbers. It will not take the new manager long to acknowledge the size of a club he has been put in charge of and the potential that awaits should he find the ingredients that can deliver success. As the weeks and months progress, hopefully we will see the manager’s ideas and influences transpire on to the pitch with a winning outcome the preferred option.
On Saturday we welcome Rangers to Easter Road in the lunchtime kick-off. This match may just prove to be the fixture we need with the players going into this game as massive underdogs. As long as we show the same fight and desire as our opponents will then you never know what can happen.
Looking back at my own experience playing for Hibs, we had a lot of young players with huge potential including John Collins, Paul Kane, Gordon Hunter and many more who needed the right tuition in learning their trade. We needed a player who had experienced the pinnacle of club football and spells with both Tottenham Hotspur and Spanish giants Barcelona certainly fitted the bill. It was, therefore, a pleasure to have Steve Archibald at our disposal with his leadership proving invaluable to many of us who were at the very early stages of our respective careers.
For me, personally, our time spent at the training ground is what made me open my eyes as his professionalism and commitment to becoming an all-round better player was second to none. It proved no coincidence after his arrival that we managed to achieve a spot in European competition which arrived with an opportunity to progress our own talents to a new level.
I would also like to thank all of the players who have continued to play in a number of fixtures for the former Hibs Player’s Association to raise funds for a number of charities and worthy causes. They have given up a lot of their own time in pursuit of making that little bit of difference to people’s lives and have had great fun in the process. Next season we’re hoping to broaden our horizons and take in some sunshine along the way.