PAUL HECKINGBOTTOM has urged Christian Doidge not to change his game as he bids to make a name for himself at Hibs.
The striker has struggled to make much of an impact since arriving in a £300,000 move from Forest Green Rovers in the summer.
The 27-year-old saw Florian Kamberi preferred in attack at the start of the league campaign and is one of the summer signings from south of the border that fans have questioned during the team’s poor run.
However, the rangy Welshman has impressed in starts against Kilmarnock and Celtic in the past week as the Easter Road outfit have reached the Betfred Cup semi-final and become the first team to deny the Hoops a league victory.
It was his cutback that Kristoffer Ajer turned into his own net for Hibs’ opener in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with the champions.
And Heckingbottom has revealed he held talks with the former Wales international basketball player last week to tell him to stay true to his natural game.
He said: “Christian has had to bide his time.
“I spoke to him and told him he’s come up here because we like what he does.
“He doesn’t have to come up here and play like anybody else. He has to bring and show his qualities.
“And I think everyone can see in the last two games he’s done that.
“He’s led the line superbly well.”
Meanwhile, Melker Hallberg has also come in for praise from Heckingbottom after starting the last four games for Hibs.
The Sweden internationalist did not arrive at Easter Road until the last week of August after a summer without a club and Heckingbottom is convinced the former Udinese midfielder will keep improving.
He added to Hibs TV: “Melker deserves a lot of credit. He’s looked after himself tremendously well before we got the deal done and you can see that.
“He came in and was able to play games. He’s not had a pre-season with us, he’s had to have his football in our first-team.
“And then he’s come through a week playing three games in six days. So we’re delighted with him and for him. He’s shown he’s a good professional lad.
“He’s had to find his feet in the first-team in some big games for us, so I’m expecting more to come from him as he settles in.”