Hibs boss Pat Fenlon today urged his Easter Road stars to make their biggest away win in six years really count by following it up with victory over St Mirren this weekend.
Although the 4-0 triumph over Motherwell at Fir Park was only Hibs’ second away win of the season, Fenlon’s side remain unbeaten at home and three points against the Buddies would see them go top of the SPL table again for 24 hours at least, with current leaders Celtic not playing Dundee United until Sunday.
Fenlon, pictured right, believes Hibs will go into Saturday’s match full of confidence following their display in Lanarkshire, admitting that, while the Capital club enjoyed the rub of the green they thoroughly deserved their win on the night, a fact perhaps lost in the controversy surrounding the match as Motherwell saw a “goal” disallowed and two contentious penalties awarded against them.
The Easter Road manager said: “We played really good stuff at times, our build-up play was good, as was our finishing. They pinned us in for the first 20 or 25 minutes but we knew we’d be under pressure at times and would have to defend better than we had been, but we put in the work in training during the week and got our rewards.”
As for the decisions by referee Stevie O’Reilly which incensed the Motherwell players and fans, Fenlon said: “Things go for you sometimes. We’ve had them go against us before and I’m sure they won’t go for us again sometime.”
Fenlon, though, was in no doubt as to what the win should mean to his side. “What it does is give the players confidence,” he said. “That’s what we have been trying to build up over a period of time, giving them confidence and a belief in themselves. To go and score four goals away from home is a fantastic achievement.
“Now we have two home games and we have to look to back up that result with a win on Saturday.”
However, Fenlon warned that although Hibs defeated Danny Lennon’s side earlier in the season in Paisley, they face another tough match having taken in Saints match against Dundee United on Saturday as his own players enjoyed a well deserved day off following their efforts the previous evening.
Although St Mirren lost that match to a Johnny Russell penalty, Fenlon said: “I thought they were a bit unlucky. They played well and didn’t deserve to lose.”
Meanwhile, Fenlon believes right back Tim Clancy will be fit to face the Buddies despite coming off early in the second half at Fir Park. Clancy had missed the defeat to Ross County six days earlier with a stomach muscle problem but Fenlon revealed he’d replaced him with Alan Maybury purely as a precautionary measure.
He said: “Tim felt it a little bit but there was no damage done and he should be okay.”