While there were quite a few negatives in Saturday’s comfortable win over the Arabs, one notable positive was the distinct return to form for recently-beleaguered Ianis Hagi.
The Romanian has struggled to settle this season, and while we’ve backed him to get out of his malaise, we always call it as it is and admitted he hadn’t been at his best.
But he was most definitely at it again with Micky Mellon’s men.
5 shots, one on target, 3 key passes, a successful dribble and was fouled, and managing an 80% passing average. He also assisted Ryan Kent’s opening goal with a delightful through ball then managed another wonderful reverse pass down the left flank not long after.
Hagi looked much more like himself in this one, helped, we think by his positioning, which was mainly in the 10 position.
In a match where, once again, we had to deal without Joe Aribo, we needed Hagi to finally hit the heights in that position and provide the serious competition for the Nigerian for when he’s fit again.
Performances like Saturday’s will help his cause greatly.
He’s not produced enough of those in the 7 fixtures this season – 5 have been a bit off, and only one other, at home to St Mirren, was approaching this.
Hopefully Hagi is settling again and feeling comfortable, because we know what he can do and how good he is.
Hopefully this is the start of a consistent run of performances like this.