Even though it was disappointing not to win on Saturday, it bodes well that Hibs had the majority of the possession and the better of the game against a good side like Aberdeen.
They were stuffy and looked dangerous on the break but I felt we deserved to win. I thought we looked very good, all things considered. I think it’s just a matter of time until things properly click for us and we start winning regularly again, but as I wrote last week, that’s unlikely to happen overnight.
Of course, teams can hit the ground running, like Hearts have done, but they had most of their new players in early and have had a full pre-season together. We’ve been introducing players during competitive matches and that’s not a straightforward thing to do.
Participating in the Europa League is always going to be a good thing for the club, but from a player’s perspective, it means they get less time off and are straight back into a heavy run of fixtures when they’re not fully back up to speed. That scenario is always likely to take a toll on results. Although we’d prefer to have a few more points on the board, I’m still optimistic about the way things are going.
Once the transfer window closes and everything settles down, we’ll gradually start to find our rhythm again but we still need to get the balance of the team sorted, in terms of attacking effectively and remaining secure defensively.
I’m looking forward to seeing Mark Milligan introduced to the team because I think our midfield occasionally looks vulnerable on the counter-attack when we’re without Marvin Bartley. Milligan seems like the type of player who will bring a bit of control and presence. It should also help the defence because we lost another poor goal on Saturday. Ryan Porteous has come in and done really well but, as a unit, I feel we’ve missed Darren McGregor. He’s quick, aggressive, experienced and reads the game well, and I think we generally look a bit more assured when he plays.