Hibs keeper Ofir Marciano passes English test – but admits he cannot understand his team-mates



Hibs goalkeeper Ofir Marciano had to pass an English test to obtain a visa before completing his move to Easter Road, now he plans to learn the local tongue so he can communicate with his team-mates.

The Israeli internationalist moved to Hibs on a season-long loan from FC Ashdod at the start of the month but was only given clearance to play last week following a delay in completing the paperwork.

Marciano travelled back to Belgium to finalise the switch having played there with Mouscron-Peruweiz, and even had to prove that he had an understanding of the English language.

(Pic: Twitter @hibsofficial)
(Pic: Twitter @hibsofficial)

But the 26-year-old admits his communication skills have been put to the test in a Hibs changing room that is full of thick Scottish accents.

Marciano, who is hoping to be handed his debut in today’s visit of Morton, said: “It has been frustrating, for sure.

“But we did it together and the club helped me.

“First of all I had to take an English test. I also had to go out of the country to Belgium last week.

“There is some procedure where you have to live in the UK for a number of days and come back in again.

“I had an appointment with the UK Embassy there to get my visa, and then I had to wait for my passport to come back with my visa.

“I knew I had to get a work permit and I knew there were some procedures but I didn’t know what the procedures were.

“But the club knew everything and they did it very well.

“It was still a big relief when I was told everything was okay because this is the reason I came here.”

Marciano, however, joked that he is finding it hard to understand his team-mates.

He added: “The English they speak here is different to the test.

“The need to talk a little bit slower for me, but it’s okay.

“I am trying to learn Scottish, but I have only been here for a few weeks.

“I am sure as the months pass I am going to pick up everything. I hear Jason Cummings maybe wouldn’t pass my English test.

“I like this guy, he is a good boy.”

Lennon has high hopes for Marciano and the shot-stopper reckons Hibs is the ideal place for him to progress his career.

He added: “First of all you have to come here to see the facilities, the fans, the stadium. It’s a big, big club.

“And I think this is a good decision for me to come here and show my abilities, and I can’t wait to play in front of these great fans.

“I’m impressed with the professionalism of this club, how it handles everything.

“It’s a top club for me. The facilities are great, it gives you every chance to improve your ability.

“The stadium is amazing, the fans are amazing too. I like what I see here.”