Adam Bogdan believes clean sheets key to Hibs hitting back
Adam Bogdan has insisted the 4-2 defeat by Celtic won't derail Hibs' season, but knows Neil Lennon's side must rediscover the knack of keeping clean sheets.
The Hungarian goalkeeper had four successive shut-outs to his name before heading to Glasgow, only to find himself picking the ball out of his net four times although, as he pointed out, Hibs created plenty chances of their own.
However, Bogdan admitted the Capital outfit had put themselves under the cosh by conceding two goals in the opening 19 minutes, Tom Rogic and Olivier Ntcham both getting on the scoresheet.
While Florian Kamberi brought Hibs back into the game with a stunning finish, Odsonne Edouard restored Celtic’s two-goal lead before finally sealing the win three minutes from time with his second of the match after Martin Boyle had again given the travelling support a glimmer of hope.
The on-loan Liverpool keeper said: “We were very disappointed with the result. We didn’t start well but we can always create chances and we scored two, while Craig Gordon made an unbelievable save [from a first-half Boyle header] as well.
“But at the same time we were very open at the back and they managed to create many chances. Celtic are a very good team and they like to keep the ball and stretch the pitch, make it big and make runs in behind and we couldn’t really lock them down.”
It was only Hibs’ second league defeat of the season, but while disappointing in itself, Bogdan was adamant it will be no more than a blip. “Some of the football we play is unbelievable. It’s so good to see. We had chance after chance and in the last couple of games before Saturday we managed to close the back door as well. That’s why we got results and managed to climb up the table.
“Going forward, though, Celtic are a fantastic team and you are not always going to be playing against an opponent like them. But we need to get back to the kind of performances where we are locking it up at the back and with the same style going forward to create chances.”
Having started the match with a back-three, Lennon was forced to change to a more conventional 4-4-2, a formation in which his players looked more comfortable although the Hibs head coach had made his intentions clear by going with two front men in Kamberi and Boyle throughout.
It was a bold move as Bogdan agreed and one which, he claimed, could have paid dividends on another day.
He said: “There’s a fine line between bravery and being left exposed. You can sit back and maybe the result will be the same. Or maybe you can go for it but defend as a team and get away with a 2-2.
“In the second half you could see that it could have gone either way. The gaffer told us we had to get out. We were still in the game at 2-0 and we had to get a goal back then hope to get another one. He obviously wasn’t happy with the way we’d played, but he told us we had to go for it, pick up the second balls, be more aggressive and physical and get back into the game.
“There are a lot of positives. We managed to defend as a team on some occasions and you know you have to do that against a team that creates a lot of chances. But we conceded four goals, so you can’t be happy.”