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Martin Boyle sees reasons for Hibs to be cheerful in Europe

Hibernian v Rijeka – UEFA Europa Conference League – Third Qualifying Round – First Leg – Easter Road Stadium
(Image credit: Andrew Milligan)

Martin Boyle believes Hibernian showed enough in the 1-1 draw against Rijeka on Thursday night to be confident of Europa Conference League progression next week.

In the first leg of the third qualifier at Easter Road, the home side fell behind on the hour mark when Prince Ampem headed in a cross from Andrija Vukcevic.

Hibs rallied and attacker Boyle levelled six minutes later with a close-range finish following a corner for his fourth goal in four games this season, but Jack Ross’s side, despite having the bulk of pressure, had to settle for a draw to take to Croatia next week.

However, the 28-year-old Australia international is upbeat about Hibs’ prospects in the return game.

Boyle, who turns his attention to the home cinch Premiership clash with Ross County on Sunday, said: “We believe in the squad that we have more than enough.

“Obviously they have a few players that caused some problems but I am sure that if we can go over there and play the same way that we did, I believe we can get through.

“I thought we created the better chances, obviously we had a big chance at the end, the one-on-one with Dan (Mackay) but unfortunately it didn’t go in.

“I thought we caused them a lot of problems and I think we should have won it.

“But it was a good match, we played well, we kept the ball well, we caused them problems and we can take that over there.

“We prepared well and we knew they are a decent team from a decent league.

“But we also have decent players that can hurt them and I felt we did that and I thought we probably should have scored a couple of more goals.

“We can take a lot of encouragement. We have a good squad, great belief in what we are doing, we have had a good start to the season and we are taking it game by game and Thursday was another good showing.

“We take it into Sunday’s game and then we will think about them next week.”