TODAY’s Scottish Cup final is a historic occasion, the first time in more than a century that the two Edinburgh sides have faced each other to battle for one of the sport’s most famous trophies.
Whatever happens on the pitch, the Capital is assured a huge party as the winning team parades the cup through the streets on an open-top bus surrounded by delighted fans.
There was a huge celebration in 1991, as delirious Hibs fans turned out to acclaim their Skol Cup winning side, after they beat Dunfermline to give their long-suffering supporters a taste of glory.
Those scenes of jubilation will be dwarfed tomorrow should the Easter Road side bring back the cup – and may even match the incredible scenes which greeted Hearts players after they won the Scottish Cup in 1956.
Having beaten Celtic they returned to the Capital with the trophy – though not before goal-scoring hero Ian Crawford and several of his teammates had enjoyed a drink from it.
The open-top bus was met by a massive crowd on Princes Street late in the evening as the team returned, and mounted escorts had to be provided by Lothian and Borders Police to keep the parade moving, such were the numbers.
The celebrations had been a long time coming. It was the first time Hearts had appeared in the final since 1907, so it was hardly surprising so many people turned out to celebrate.
Those lucky enough to be at Hampden today will no doubt be hanging on to souvenirs such as the match programme – there are still a few original programmes from the last time the teams met in the cup, in 1896, as well as the final between Hibs and Aberdeen in 1947 which showed club captain Davie Shaw as he prepared of the match – and these are highly prized by fans.
Of course not all memorabilia is quite so long lasting – this year fans have cooked up special cup final treats including cupcakes, biscuits and even Hearts and Hibs pies.
Back in 1979, Martins the bakers hoped to cook up a little luck for Hibs with some special “Hibs for the Cup” cakes, ahead of their final against Rangers.
Given their record in the competition it was badly needed, but sadly, once again, Hibs were unable to bring home the trophy.