Joe Newell focusing on brighter days as he plots successful future at Hibs

It took a while for Joe Newell to get his Hibs career going and although he has blossomed this term, the midfielder says he has yet to wring the best out of his stay in the capital.

Joe Newell says Hibs have bounced back from recent disappointments and are full of self-belief ahead of Celtic match. Photo by Mark Scates/SNS Group
Joe Newell says Hibs have bounced back from recent disappointments and are full of self-belief ahead of Celtic match. Photo by Mark Scates/SNS Group

Which is why he does not anticipate any hiccups at his end when it comes to penning a new contract with the club, as he looks to extend his stay beyond the summer.

“I have loved my time here so far and the gaffer has come in and shown his trust in me and I have really enjoyed it,” said the Englishman. “If anything, covid has ruined it a bit for me so far and in my 18 months up here I have not really had the chance to experience the city as well as the club, on and off the pitch because of not having the fans in. So, when the conversations come round, there will be no problems. We will try to get it sorted.”

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Working together to find the best way forward has served Newell and his current boss Jack Ross well.

After a difficult first season in Leith, the midfielder has been given a new lease of life by Ross, and Newell’s displays in the middle of the park have been hugely influential as Hibs quickly found their way to the higher echelons of the Premiership.

Having suffered very few blips, the team’s mettle was tested in recent weeks as defeat to Hearts in the Scottish Cup semi final knocked them off kilter.

That was followed by another disappointment against Aberdeen, as the Leith side suffered their first back to back losses of the season.

But bouncing back against Dundee last weekend, Newell says the players are relishing the opportunity to welcome defending champions Celtic to Easter Road this afternoon.

“That was a tough week overall. We were all in a bit of a rut after the Hearts game, there was a bit of a hangover really. But, we have a bit of confidence back after the Dundee game and these are the kind of games you want to be involved in.”

Despite the Glasgow side’s domestic dominance, Hibs’ form in the home head to heads has been decent. Add that to their display against Rangers earlier in the campaign and Newell says there is plenty self-belief in the Hibs dressing room.

“I didn’t play against them at home last year but you have to be resolute against them, you have to be well organised, take your chances when they come and stay in the game. You have to be confident in your own team and the way you want to play. You have to believe in your gameplan and the way the manager sets you out. It is a mixture of a lot of things.

“To get a good result against a good team, you have to do a lot of things well, which we are capable of. Hopefully that’s what happens.

“The fact that we came from behind in that game [against Rangers], the character shown, we take a lot of confidence from that. We know we are a good team and have good players and a good squad so while, on any given day, they can cause us problems, they know that about us as well.”

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