Alan Stubbs urges Hibs to overcome air of negativity

Alan Stubbs believes Cowdenbeath will come to Easter Road aimed at stifling Hibs.
Alan Stubbs believes Cowdenbeath will come to Easter Road aimed at stifling Hibs.
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Alan Stubbs admitted an air of negativity is still hanging over Easter Road – but challenged his players to have the “steeliness” to play through it.

Hibs go into Saturday’s match against Cowdenbeath on the back of three straight defeats in the Championship, but are still expected to beat the Fife outfit.

Stubbs knows Jimmy Nicholl’s side will come looking to frustrate his players and attempt to put the home fans on edge, but he insisted that the Capital outfit have to be ready to contend with those tactics.

He said: “We have to bounce back this week. We will be expected to win, but I know Cowdenbeath are going to enjoy coming here. It’s a great stadium to come and play, but we have to make sure it’s an unhappy experience for them.

“It’s an obstacle you have to overcome. It’s okay performing against the Rangers, Hearts and Falkirks, but we have to perform against what people say are the lesser teams. I know teams are going to come here and put ten men behind the ball – if I was manager of one of those teams I’d probably do the same.

“If people want to come and take us on there’s every chance that, more often than not, we will be able to open them up because potentially we have the better players. But we have to be able to play to a Plan B if Plan A is not working – we just can’t be one dimensional.

“Everyone’s mindset will be if we can keep the home fans quiet for ten, 15, 20 minutes we might be able to cause frustration. We have to combat that. We cannot win games in the first 20 minutes, but we can certainly do a lot in that time and we have to be prepared to win games in the last five minutes.

“We have to try to turn the negativity which is there. We have to play through that. We are not going to use it as an excuse. We have to show a steeliness about us, that they are coming to our home patch, but they are not going to be going away with anything.”