What Jimmy Jeggo has been telling Hibs teammates about new boss who ‘spanked’ big-spending favourites
Arrival of former Central Coast coach Nick Montgomery could be a catalyst for renewal, according to Aussie midfielder Jimmy Jeggo
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Hibs players have been energised and excited by the arrival of new boss Nick Montgomery, according to midfielder Jimmy Jeggo – who says the gaffer’s title-winning achievements in Australia earned him instant respect in the first team dressing room at East Mains.
“It’s really exciting for us, as players, to have someone of his calibre come in,” said the former Melbourne Victory player, who enjoyed watching big-spending rivals Melbourne City get “spanked” 6-1 by Montgomery’s Central Coast Mariners in this year’s A-League Grand Final.
Jeggo believes leading the underdogs to that unlikely triumph guaranteed the new head coach a degree of buy-in from his new players on day one at Hibs.
“One hundred per cent,” said the Aussie. “I know a little bit about him and Millsy (former Mariners defender Lewis Miller) knows him - and the boys have asked a lot. Obviously the structure of the league in Australia is very different, because it’s a salary-capped league.
“But within that there is scope for the bigger clubs to be able to spend outside the cap. Traditionally, your Melbourne and Sydney teams are really strong, especially Melbourne City, who have sort of won everything for the past four or five years. They’ve been almost unbeatable.
“Last year, the way the league works is you finish the league and then you have a final series. Where Central Coast finished, they had to go three games undefeated and then play in the Grand Final against City, who have got three or four national team players, a massive budget – and the Mariners absolutely spanked them in the final.
“That was the moment when everyone, if they hadn’t already sat up and taken notice, really took notice of what Central Coast were doing. Since he took over there, the club has been a real feelgood story – and a team we’ve all been impressed with.
“When a new manager comes in, you’re keen to learn, you’re keen to listen. You want to learn as much as you can and work out what he wants from you so you can go out there and implement it.
“I really enjoy a new manager coming in and seeing what he wants to do, putting that into practice. It’s an exciting time. That means going out and working hard but of course you enjoy it when you do it, seeing how quickly we can take this club forward.”