Hearts defender Toby Sibbick relives his Scottish Cup goal: 'Hopefully that shut the Hibs fans up'
Galloping like a gazelle deep into enemy territory, Toby Sibbick sensed his moment had arrived. The Hearts defender was a sprinter in his teens and showed a lightning turn of speed to race from his own penalty area into Hibs’ box.
Stephen Humphrys delivered a perfectly-weighted through pass, one touch and a classy dink later and Sibbick had his first Hearts goal: The third in a 3-0 derby win. In the Scottish Cup. At Easter Road. In front of the away end. Life doesn’t get much better in a maroon shirt.
After a finish the envy of any centre-forward to lift the ball over Hibs goalkeeper David Marshall, he stood with fingers in ears and eyes closed – savouring the moment as it sunk in. “If I don’t take the first touch, although it was heavy, I don’t necessarily think I score,” recalled the Englishman. “It brings the keeper out a bit. If it was too close to my body he would’ve stayed on his line and the angle is tighter. But the first touch brought him out and I just thought, ‘Just dink it over him’ and fortunately it worked. So I’m happy with it.
“It was my first goal here at the club, I haven’t scored many in my career, it’s something I need to work on. To score and send the fans home happy – and they were going wild at the time – was an amazing feeling.”
Particularly after some taunts from the Hibs support. “I don’t pay much attention to that,” added Sibbick. “Fans will always try to get on your back but I had the backing of our fans, I scored and hopefully that shut the Hibs fans up.
“I’ve been saying for a while now that I need to score. The one in the derby at home got disallowed, so there was no better time to score my first one. Hopefully I can add a few more this season.
“It was a tough game, our fans were probably nervy watching it, Hibs hit the post a couple of times and had a few good chances. When we went down to ten men it was only 2-0, so to score the third and calm the nerves a bit was a good feeling.”
Lawrence Shankland’s late red card for two cautions was the only real downside for Hearts. They were under pressure for periods of the second half as Hibs pushed for a way back into the tie. Sibbick and his defensive colleagues refused to yield.
“We were conceding far too many goals before the winter break. Since we came back we haven't conceded many. That's three clean sheets in a row now. We've been doing a lot of defensive work on the training pitch. It's something to keep building on. Ultimately, if you don't concede you can't lose the game. That's what we aim for. If we're solid at the back, we give our attackers the best chance of scoring.”
The reward for eliminating their Edinburgh neighbours is a trip to Hamilton in the fifth round. The ultimate aim is to get maroon and white ribbons on the Scottish Cup come the end of the season.
“Yeah, that's a target we set out before the season,” said Sibbick. “Coming into this game, league form goes out the window and anything can happen in cup games. If we started solid with a strong foundation, we knew we could win the game and that's what we did.”