David Wotherspoon eyes regular run for Hibs

Hibernian midfielder David Wotherspoon

David Wotherspoon may not be playing in his preferred position but you won't catch the Hibs midfielder complaining.

"I like playing behind the striker," he said. "I've played there with Scotland U21s and I enjoy it. I feel I can contribute more from the centre.

"But I'm playing right midfield at the moment, so hopefully I can find my feet.

"And obviously if I'm playing week-in, week-out and not chopping and changing then I'm happy."

The 22-year-old has already made more than 100 league appearances for the Easter Road side, having been utilised as a right-back and in a variety of midfield roles.

Manager Pat Fenlon experimented with a 4-2-3-1 system in warm-up games, with Wotherspoon occupying the central position he likes.

But a poor opening day defeat at Dundee United forced a rethink on tactics and a draw and two wins have followed a switch to a 4-4-2 line-up.

"We started pre-season with a different formation but the first game of the season didn't go so well," explained Wotherspoon.

"Because we've got so many strikers in the squad we need to get them on.

"I just want to play regularly and improve, that's my only focus.

"This is a massive season for me. It's the final year of my contract so I need to perform well.

"I want to get on the score-sheet a lot more and get more assists. I've started with two [assists] this season, so that's good so far.

Hibs captain James McPake
Wotherspoon has been impressed by the contribution of skipper James McPake

"I've been versatile over the past few years and I don't want that to hinder my career. Hopefully, I can maintain one position long enough to feel like I've slotted in properly."

Having flirted with relegation for the past two seasons, Hibs currently occupy second place in the Scottish Premier League.

And Wotherspoon credits Fenlon's summer recruitment drive for the improvement.

"There's a lot of experience come into the team," he added.

"There's a real core strength down the middle, with Ben Williams, Gary Deegan and James McPake returning to the club, who's been a rock at the back. The boys round about them have really felt their presence.

"Those players have got a real honesty about them and will do the hard parts right."

Just four of the team that started in last season's miserable 5-1 Scottish Cup final thumping from Hearts featured in Saturday's 2-0 win over St Johnstone.

Alan Maybury, Tim Clancy, Paul Cairney and Shefki Kuqi are other new arrivals, while Leigh Griffiths is back for a second loan spell.

"The potential at the club is huge," said Fenlon. "Hopefully, we are heading in the right direction and we can realise that potential.

"It's slow progress and we've got to make sure that it's steady. We will have blips and hiccups along the way but this season is about moving the club forward.

"It goes down to the type of players we have signed and the characters we have brought into the club. We thought that was something that drastically needed to change.

"We are still able to produce good young players, which the club has a history of doing, but in relation to recruitment we needed to change and we've done that with the players we have brought in."