More Injury Problems for Fenlon Ahead of Aberdeen Clash
Pat Fenlon has been dealt another blow in the fight against relegation with the news that influential skipper James McPake missed training with a groin injury which makes him a major doubt for tonight’s crucial fixture against Aberdeen.
Rumours spread throughout the city to the effect that McPake would be out for the rest of the season, but the on-loan Coventry City star was quick to quash the speculation on Twitter where he revealed that although he is doubtful for the Pittodrie trip, he hopes to be fit for the crucial relegation battle Dunfermline game next Monday.
Fenlon is also sweating on the fitness of top goal-scorer Garry O’Connor who missed Sunday’s defeat at St Mirren through illness. The Scotland international striker has scored 15 times since his summer move from Birmingham City, and his presence would be a major boost for the club who have seen their seven point lead over Dunfermline evaporate to three in the past fortnight.
Speaking on Hibs TV ahead of the Aberdeen fixture, Fenlon said: “Garry had been sick for a couple of days but I do not know if he will be ready for Wednesday. We could do with him being fit. We’ll check on him today but we’ll have to wait and see. James McPake didn’t do too much today due to a groin problem. So again we will see how he is tomorrow.
“Danny Galbraith is out for the rest of the season and will undergo an exploratory operation later this week and Lewis Stevenson is suspended.
“But everyone else is fit and available for the match. One or two players will get an opportunity to play and it’s like with everything they will need to take that chance.
“There are a lot of big games left to play and they’ve got to try to get into the team. We need to be more clinical in front of goal and also better defensively. It’s sometimes difficult after losing a game to retain your belief, but there were a lot of positives we can take from both the Kilmarnock and St Mirren games.
We’ve got to make sure we go to Pittodrie and win the game. We’ve played Aberdeen three times since I’ve been here and there has been very little in all of those games. We need to be as good as we were and also get the rub of the green.
“I was disappointed with the result against St Mirren, but pleased with the performance, I thought we did enough to win the game, it was a bit like last week, our goalkeeper didn’t have a save to make.”
Pars boss Jim Jeffries claims that Hibs are favourites to beat the drop despite recent form, which saw his team come back from 4-2 down to snatch a late point against St Mirren then comprehensively beat Aberdeen to give the fans their first home victory of the season. Dunfermline take on Inverness Caledonian at the Tullochs Caledonian Stadium tonight, but whatever the result is up north, the stage is set for a massive game between the relegation candidates at Easter Road next Monday which could decide the fate of both clubs for next season.
Meanwhile, a young Hibs team won the East of Scotland Shield after defeating Hearts on penalties.