Shaun Maloney speaks on Hibs 'style' and 'romance' as late fitness tests and one big selection conundrum loom

Having previously praised his team’s performance in their defeat to Celtic, Shaun Maloney declared himself thrilled with the fight and desire shown in Tuesday night’s derby draw.

Hibs manager Shaun Maloney has to decide whether to stick with young goalkeeper Kevin Dabrowski or reinstate Matt Macey.
Hibs manager Shaun Maloney has to decide whether to stick with young goalkeeper Kevin Dabrowski or reinstate Matt Macey.

But, demanding his players now bring that level of energy to every game, he is hoping for a performance and result against St Mirren on Saturday.

Still seeking their first league win since returning from the winter break, everyone at Easter Road knows that victory would take them back into fourth spot, above Motherwell and, on the evidence of this week, as they turned last Saturday’s boos into raucous positivity from the stands, they have what is needed.

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“The biggest thing the other night was the mentality and desire not to get beat,” stressed Maloney, who has made it known that he loves possession football but was willing to find a necessary compromise to foil Hearts. “I love really attacking football but I also really love the other side of it and I love the competitiveness we showed. It was probably that side that resonated with the support. They saw a group of players who fought for their team-mates and staff, but the big thing was they really fought for the badge.

“I want to see the same thing in every game.

“Listen, I love a certain style of football and I want something that is similar to the tradition the club has had before, a certain style, a certain romance, I love that, but at the moment we are not there. But what I want to see every week is the mentality I saw the other night.”

There will be late fitness tests for Paul McGinn and Joe Newell, but Josh Doig is available for selection, as is goalkeeper Matt Macey, but Maloney was playing his cards close to his chest as he deliberates whether to reinstall the Englishman or reward Kevin Dabrowski for his performance on Tuesday by giving his a second start.

“I think because Kevin’s performance was outstanding, it gives me a decision to make. I’m very, very pleased for him and he should be very proud.”

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