A FURIOUS Alan Stubbs has warned his players he’ll wield the axe if there’s any repeat of their disappointing performance at Dumbarton, accusing some of them of “hiding” behind the Scott Allan transfer saga.
Stubbs laid it on the line after watching his side give away two needless free-kicks which gave the part-timers a 2-1 victory, Hibs having failed to grasp the lifeline thrown to them by Dominique Malonga’s equaliser.
And, with a string of players now back in contention following injury – Martin Boyle, John McGinn and Dan Carmichael all on the bench for the first time this season with Jordon Forster, James Keatings and Farid El Alagui still to return – Stubbs insisted he’s not making an empty threat.
He said: “We were undone by two set pieces. That apart, we have been in the game and should have done better.
“We cannot get to a situation where we are conceding goals and are having to win games by 3-2 or 4-3. It’s not on. We started slowly. I wanted more urgency to our play. We conceded a really poor goal, got back into the game and I was looking for the players to kick on.
“But then we give away another needless free-kick on the edge of the box in a dangerous area and the boy put it in.”
Adamant his side had enough of the ball and chances to avoid defeat, Stubbs conceded his players’ decision-making let them down too often and stressed he won’t tolerate any more below standard displays.
He said: “There were too many not on it. They need to look at themselves and get back on it as soon as possible or otherwise they just need to look at the bench. There are players coming back and they won’t find themselves in the team. It’s as simple as that.
“When you get the jersey, you have to make sure you perform well and keep it. If you do not, there is someone else there to take it.”
Stubbs then turned his attention to the continued speculation over the future of Allan, who made his first start of the season. He said: “I am not going to allow or let the players use the events of the last few weeks as an excuse because it’s certainly not.
“I think some players have hid behind that and I won’t allow it. What goes on in the media has no bearing whatsoever with the players. They have to get on with it and put it aside. This result was not acceptable.”