Terry Butcher has urged Easter Road fans to play their part in driving Hibs clear of the danger of a relegation play-off with three of the Edinburgh club’s final four games of the season at home.
Admitting it has been a “wretched” season for the supporters, Butcher has been delighted with the way they have stuck by his struggling team, as shown when more than 1500 travelled to Paisley last weekend.
Once again they were let down as Hibs slumped to their fifth successive defeat, bringing their miserable run since beating Hearts on January 2 to just one win in 14 league games, a record which leaves them hovering just three points above an 11th-place finish, which would result in them battling it out in a play-off to secure their top-flight status.
Hearts are first up, the Gorgie side crossng the Capital on Sunday hoping to repeat their recent derby win at Tynecastle and so heap further trouble on their city neighbours, while Partick Thistle and Kilmarnock, on the final day of the season, are also due at Easter Road. Butcher believes that having three out of four games at home can be of huge advantage to Hibs, particularly with the backing of a vociferous support.
Recalling the 15,000-plus crowd which turned out to roar Hibs on in the penultimate game of the season against Dunfermline two years ago, Butcher said: “I watched that game on television. It was a great turn-out by the fans and the reason Hibs won that game was because they had the supporters pushing the lads over the line.
“We’ve had a magnificent support all season, we know they’ll back us. But we need everyone to be together now. We have to work hard together as a team, a squad, a club, everything. There’s no doubt the supporters can play a big part. It’s been a wretched season for them but now it’s all about the next four games.”
Meanwhile, a fundraising lunch at Royal Musselburgh Golf Club in memory of tragic Easter Road kid David Paul organised by the Prestonpans Hibs Supporters’ Club raised £3416 for the charity CRY (Cardiac Risk in the Young).