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Fenlon pleased with turnaround
Pat Fenlon reflected on a job well done as his Hibernian side reached the SPL winter break rejuvenated following recent seasons of toil.
After beating champions Celtic, and securing a 0-0 Edinburgh derby draw at Hearts, fourth-placed Hibs have 32 points from 22 games, just one point less than accumulated in the whole of last season when they finished 11th. The two-week hiatus now offers a chance to reflect on the season so far and look to the final months of the campaign. Fenlon said:
"I don't think we had any real targets. The target at the start of the season was to try to get ourselves in that top six, that's still the same.
"I think we're fairly close to our full points tally last year already.
"The players deserve great credit for that. There's been a massive turnaround in relation to points, but attitude and application to games as well."
Fenlon was appointed in November 2011 with the task of ensuring SPL survival, and overhauled the squad he inherited from Colin Calderwood in two transfer windows. The Irishman hopes to be quieter during the current window, with the priority extending deals for loan trio Leigh Griffiths, Ryan McGivern and Jorge Claros. All three will be available for the first match back on January 19 against Dundee, but thereafter depends on whether deals can be agreed with their parent clubs. Fenlon was happy with his side's performance at Tynecastle, as Hibs claimed a second clean sheet in a week following the 1-0 defeat of Celtic.
"We had to really dig in and work hard to get anything out of the game," added Fenlon, who conceded Hearts had the better opportunities. Although the merits of the break have been questioned, particularly due to the mild conditions in which Thursday night's match was played, for Fenlon it is welcome.
"Most managers will say because squads are not massive it's a good time to have a little rest for everybody," he said.
"We're working on a small squad and a lot of players have played a lot of the games.
"It's a good time to give them a little bit of time off and recharge the batteries."
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