Lee Johnson challenges Hibs to replicate home form on the road as he anticipates return of injured players
Lee Johnson wants his Hibs players to make sure away games match their performances at Easter Road after a convincing 3-1 victory over ten-man Aberdeen.
Martin Boyle’s penalty on the stroke of half-time after Liam Scales was sent off for a second bookable offence cancelled out Luis Lopes’ opener, and Josh Campbell scored twice in ten second-half minutes to ensure back-to-back home wins for Hibs.
But with the side’s away form failing to reflect their displays in the Capital – save for the last-gasp opening-day victory at St Johnstone – the manager wants to see more home-style performances on the road.
“We hadn’t clicked and it was frustrating because a lot of work has been going in,” he said afterwards.
“We have to make the away form better now. We want to make Easter Road a fortress too but we have to get better away.
“I told the players I wanted to win this game that little bit more because we’ve deserved more plaudits than we’ve had.
“It was leapfrogging Aberdeen but one swallow doesn’t make a summer.”
Johnson is also looking forward to having his seven sidelined first-team players back available, with the upcoming international break providing further chance for injuries to be healed and fitness improved.
“We have good players to come back who will be like new signings,” he continued.
“Kyle Magennis, Kevin Nisbet, Elias Melkersen; Aiden McGeady isn’t a million miles away; Kevin Dabrowski, Rocky Bushiri as well. You look at the squad and it’s going to be strong.
“It will mean big decisions for me and that’s what I want.
“The international break is a catch-22 situation because you want the momentum, but it does buy us a couple of weeks to get players back.
“I think people will say we have done well with the budget. We have power, speed, good footballers.
“I am a big believer in the justice leagues as I call them – expected goals and all that.
“We were sitting third in that before Saturday and for me, that comes through in the end if you keep doing the right things and have the quality to finish.
“I knew the good work was being done, the lads were producing but it hadn’t come out to the tune of two or three points.”