HIBS CAN resume second place in the Premiership with a victory over Dundee United – but Kyle Magennis is adamant their lofty ambitions should not stop there.
For the bold midfielder, top spot should be in their sights.
Bolstered by this week’s surprise Betfred Cup defeat for the previously-impregnable Rangers against his old club, St Mirren, and by Hibs’ progress to the semi-finals, Magennis insists Hibs should aim high in both the cup and league.
The Easter Road side moved into the runners-up spot in the table for just 24 hours with last weekend’s victory over Hamilton but, with Celtic in Scottish Cup final action tomorrow, the 22-year-old has more tangible success on his mind.
“We’re in such good form and we have massive games coming up,” said Magennis, who is now back to full fitness after a hamstring injury followed cruciate knee ligament damage.
“We can go back into second if we win again this weekend and we’re capable of doing that.
“I know people are looking at third and fourth best but I think we’re capable of continuing to win games.
“If we keep doing that then we can maybe nick second place or first place. We’re a few points off the top at the moment but you never know what could happen.
“Obviously, with St Mirren beating Rangers, it shows the Old Firm are capable of dropping points, so we just need to go into every game looking to take the three points and see what happens from there.
“All the boys are in good spirits so why not go into the semi-final and win that? I’m sure all four teams will feel they can do that. We’re all confident.”
With Hibs currently a massive 15 points adrift of Rangers, had this been politics, Magennis would have been forced into a swift retraction and a claim that he ‘mis-spoke’.
Manager Jack Ross certainly tried his best to play down the Magennis comments over Hibs’ league potential.
“We have got a bit to go, in terms of where we sit in our points total, to be concerning ourselves too much with that,” said Ross. “It’s about chipping away at a ratio we think will bring us success.”
He may have tried to temper Magennis’ adventurous talk but Ross knows that delivering success could prove crucial as clubs in Scotland come to terms with new rules over signing players from the European Union once Brexit is finalised on January 1.
“You can talk the talk but you need to back it up,” added Ross. “We want to be a club that is consistently where we are just now; we want to be achieving that season after season.
“Hopefully that will make us more attractive to our own young players or to all other young Scottish players, like Kevin Nisbet and Kyle Magennis.
“We want them to see us as a vehicle to progress their careers. The fact Kevin has already been talked about for Scotland squads and is up there as one of the top scorers in the Premiership, we see that as vindication of that.
“We just need to keep doing it, keep getting success on the park, getting to semi-finals and finals, and finishing in the top four in the league.”