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Page last updated at 15:25 GMT, Wednesday, 14 April 2010 16:25 UK

John Hughes seeks more from Hibs squad

Hibs are struggling for form at the moment
Hibernian have endured a miserable run over the last two months

Manager John Hughes is hoping Hibernian can arrest their alarming slump in form, despite a growing injury list.

Patrick Cregg has not trained this week, joining Chris Hogg, Paul Hanlon, David Wotherspoon, Merouane Zemmama and Alan Gow in the treatment room.

Liam Miller is also suspended for Saturday's trip to Celtic Park.

"I know it is a big ask for us from now to the end of the season in terms of injuries, suspensions - but everyone has a part to play," said Hughes.

Hibs sit fourth in the Scottish Premier League, but a run of two wins from their last 13 games in all competitions has resulted in the Edinburgh side falling eight points behind third-placed Dundee United, having played a game more.

And the Easter Road side go into the final round of top-six fixtures, having been hammered 4-1 at Hamilton last weekend.

On the subject of injuries, Hughes added on the club's website: "We are down to the bare bones, but I've said that I can't give them an excuse because I would like to think that every player at this club shows the desire and application to get themselves into the first team - and, when you get the opportunity, you have to take it.

"If we do it right, we can get back to winning and we can get that European slot.

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"We have five cup finals between now and the end of the season, we have to concentrate on each of these games and work on how we get back to being resolute, keeping clean sheets, enjoying our football and scoring goals.

"We will do everything it takes to achieve that - anything we can possibly do to reignite that spark in the side again."

Hibs won on their last visit to Celtic Park, with Danny Galbraith netting a last-minute goal in a 2-1 triumph in late January. However, they lost to Celtic in a drab 1-0 at Easter Road a fortnight ago.

Since then, Celtic have been dumped out of the Scottish Cup at the semi-final stage by Ross County, who also disposed of Hibs in the previous round.

The Glasgow side recovered to beat Motherwell 2-1 on Tuesday and Hughes is glad that Saturday's opponents have already had a game after their shock defeat at Hampden.

"Neil Lennon was no doubt looking for a reaction from his players after their own defeat at the weekend," explained Hughes.

"When they get beaten like that, they usually come out of the traps next game determined to show people that they are better than that.

"Thankfully for us, it was Motherwell who were the immediate opponents.

"Celtic winning that match has kept Motherwell two points behind us, so now we have to take care of our own business on Saturday - it's that simple, we can't rely on anyone else now.

"We know we have to win football matches, but this is where we wanted to be. We want to be playing the Old Firm, an Edinburgh derby and competing for a European place with Dundee United and Motherwell.

"We will see what we've got and look to improve and get the wins we need."

Hughes also confirmed Zemmama had surgery in London on Tuesday in a bid to rectify the knee ligament damage that has ended his season.



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see also
Hibs contract talks put on hold
08 Apr 10 |  Hibernian
Hughes defends progress at Hibs
02 Apr 10 |  Hibernian
Season finished for Hibs' Zemmama
31 Mar 10 |  Hibernian


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