Jack Ross justified in questioning Hibs players after Aberdeen loss, says Ofir Marciano
They started the evening sitting third in the Premiership and the pre-match target had been to improve on that and move into second place.
But, when the full-time whistle sounded, Jack Ross’ Hibs side had slipped to fourth, overtaken by an Aberdeen side who still have a game in hand on their Easter Road rivals.
As they proved in the match, Derek McInnes’ men are a dangerous proposition when they get their noses in front. As incisive in attack as they are robust and unflinching in protecting their lead, their extra intent, conviction and focus allowed them to grab an early advantage and ensured they were comfortable seeing the game out.
They posed questions of a Hibs side who shot themselves in the foot with two individual errors contributing to the two goals conceded, and an overall meekness going forward which meant they never really looked like hitting back.
But Aberdeen weren’t the only ones posing the questions, with the Hibs boss asking his side to decide how realistic their ambitions are for a season that started well but has suffered a mini dip with back to back defeats against Hearts – which cost them a cup final place – and Aberdeen in the league.
“He asked us the question: ‘where do you want to be?’ And I think that is a fair question,” said goalkeeper Ofir Marciano.
‘We’ve had a good season so far but that’s not enough. We want to achieve both as individuals and as a collective as well. We really believe we can do that but we need to set higher standards every day — not just on match days but in training every day and try to be the best we can.
“We don’t expect to win every game but the demands from ourselves should be better. We know that we need to be better. This is something we have to do.
“To be successful you have to make demands of yourself and come to places like this to try and get something from the game.”
His team-mates will face Dundee in the Betfred Cup while he is on international duty with Israel then, the Leith side will return to league business with a home fixture against defending champions Celtic in just under two weeks.
By then, Marciano hopes they will have had time to refocus minds and address the individual glitches which may have gone unpunished by lesser teams but cost them goals and the game at Pittodrie.
“Usually we don’t make those kind of mistakes,” said Marciano. “We need to analyse the game and take the good things and the bad and try to get better.
He believes the best way to do that is drill down on what Hibs need to do to improve rather than become sidetracked by comparisons with others.
“I don’t want to compare us to other clubs. Hibs are a massive club and we do things in our own way. We have developed a good team this year. The recent results are disappointing if you look at last weekend’s result as well. But there’s no need to panic. We just have to understand why. We need to ask ourselves the right questions and try to move on and get better.”
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