HIBERNIAN manager Pat Fenlon admits he has already identified areas of the Easter Road team which he hopes to strengthen when the January transfer window opens, despite having only seen his charges in action for 45 minutes.
With the Edinburgh club toiling in tenth place in the SPL, just one point above the bottom, the new manager has wasted no time in assessing his options, earmarking aspects of the playing staff which desperately need strengthened.
Junior Agogo and Matt Thornhill have reportedly already been told they can leave the club, potentially freeing up a portion of the budget for Fenlon’s own targets. And while the former Bohemians manager – who has been linked to the Kuban Krasnodar midfielder Mindaugas Kalonas recently – insists he hasn’t pinpointed any individuals to approach, he has left little doubt that he is keen to do business in less than a month’s time.
He said: “We’ve identified a few areas where we are maybe a little short. We have looked at areas rather than individuals.
“That’s what we are looking at for the moment. Obviously we can’t bring anyone in straight away, so we will assess things later this month. If we need to bring in any players in January then we will do that.”
The 42-year-old may already be casting interested glances elsewhere, however he has re-enforced the message that the current members of the squad will be given time to prove themselves.
Hibs’ much-maligned players demonstrated a vast improvement on recent displays in their postponed outing against Motherwell last week, leading 1-0 at the break before an electrical fire called halt to proceedings.
That has enthused the new man at the helm, and Fenlon is keen to see what improvement he can eke out of a group of players which has consistently underachieved for some time.
He continued: “They’re playing for their future – we’re all playing for our futures.
“We’ve already spoken to one of two players who will probably leave the club, but the majority of players have been given an opportunity to go and express themselves and show me what they can do.
“I’ve said before, I want to see the players and try and get some more out of them, that perhaps they haven’t produced over a number of months.
“We’ve got a lot of players whose contracts expire in the summer, and it is up to them to prove that the want to be at a big club like Hibs. If they want to stay here and use our great facilities then they have to work hard and prove that.”
The first chance for the players to illustrate the necessary desire and work ethic will come in the form of a visit from Rangers this Saturday.