Hibs defender Liam Fontaine today revealed he would love to extend his stay at the club beyond the end of this season and help bring more success back to Easter Road.
The 30-year-old, who has started the last four matches for Neil Lennon’s side following a ten-week spell on the sidelines due to a calf injury, is just one of a host of first-team regulars whose contract expires next May.
However, the Englishman, who is now in his third season with the club having been snapped up by former boss Alan Stubbs in August 2014 following his release from Bristol City, is hoping to be able to convince Lennon and his backroom team over the next few months that he warrants a new deal.
Speaking at the Usher Hall as Hibs were awarded Forth One’s Contribution to Sport accolade for 2016 following their historic Scottish Cup final triumph over Rangers in May, Fontaine said: “Ever since I joined Hibs, I’ve enjoyed my football here. I love the city, the group of lads we’ve got so it’s a great place to be. I believe the club has still got a lot of potential so, of course, I want to be a part of it. I think there are a few lads who are nearing the end of their contracts but I’ve been in the game long enough to not let that affect me.
“We just need to get on with things and, when the time is right to get down to speaking about it, then we’ll take it from there. It’s a great time to be playing for Hibs with the crowds we’re getting and I’m really enjoying it.”
Fontaine says he feels right at home again having slotted into a back three alongside Paul Hanlon and Darren McGregor. However, he insists both he and his team-mates are able to adapt should Lennon decide to vary his tactics on a more regular basis.
“We’re playing a back three at the moment and that works well for us,” he said. “We started with that shape in the Scottish Cup final last season so everyone knows their jobs, which is good.
“But we can play any shape the manager gives us because we’ve got players who can adapt and play in any position. We’ve got wingers who can come off the bench and we have to sort our formation to suit them so I wouldn’t say any particular formation is our best. I still feel we haven’t fully clicked. People have said it but feel there could be a really big score coming once we do. We create a lot of chances and we have been solid at the back.”