Aberdeen boss Jim Goodwin 'learns lesson' after touchline ban as Hibs manager Lee Johnson offers support

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Hibs manager Lee Johnson has lent his support to Aberdeen counterpart Jim Goodwin after the Dons boss successfully appealed against a lengthy Scottish FA suspension for comments he made in the aftermath of the 3-1 defeat at Easter Road in September.

The Irishman was hit with a bumper touchline ban of eight games including two suspended as a result of accusing Hibs defender Ryan Porteous of ‘blatant cheating’ but the Dandies fought the punishment and earned a reprieve this week as Hampden bosses reduced the punishment. Goodwin will be absent from the dugout for the visit of Hibs and trip to Livingston on Tuesday night.

Speaking ahead of the visit of Hibs, Goodwin said: “I probably wasn't the most diplomatic in what I had to say and that's probably something that has gone against me, so I'll make sure that I don't make that mistake again in the future. It's probably taught me a lesson or two in terms of trying to manage my emotions in the immediate aftermath of a very disappointing result.

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"What happened in the last game at Easter Road is irrelevant now because we can't change that, however disappointed we were with the outcome of one or two events. There'll be no thinking about that game on Friday night."

Speaking from the Hibernian Training Centre, Johnson opined that the initial ban had seemed rather harsh on his opposite number. The Hibs boss has been booked twice so far this season and has previous experience of finding himself in hot water with league chiefs from earlier in his managerial career.

“I don’t really know the process up here but initially I did think it seemed a lot, to get eight games with the two suspended. As managers, we just want to win. We are working so hard under difficult circumstances a lot of the time. It’s tiring, you use so much energy, you have to have so much drive and it is passionate,” he said.

“So sometimes you say things you don’t mean, or sometimes you say things to justify something, and sometimes you say things that you do mean, because you want to get it out there. With Jim, that latter one was obviously the circumstance and as a result he’s been sanctioned for it.

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Johnson came up against Goodwin during their playing days and while the Irishman didn’t make an appearance after the final whistle at Easter Road, the 41-year-old doesn’t expect the previous encounter – and subsequent fall-out – to have any bearing on relations at Pittodrie on Friday night.

Lee Johnson and Jim Goodwin shake hands ahead of the last Hibs-Aberdeen encounterLee Johnson and Jim Goodwin shake hands ahead of the last Hibs-Aberdeen encounter
Lee Johnson and Jim Goodwin shake hands ahead of the last Hibs-Aberdeen encounter

“I’m sure Jim himself would have learned a lesson,” Johnson continued. “In fact I’m sure all managers, myself included, have learned what you can and can’t say because you’ll be sanctioned for it.”

Hibs chiefs made contact with the Dons hierarchy in the wake of Goodwin’s comments to express their disappointment but if the Aberdeen manager returned their calls, Johnson insisted he knew nothing about it.

“Did Jim get in touch with the club [after the last game]? Not that I know of. I know Jim well from playing against him. We didn’t have contact after the game last time but I’m sure it won’t affect us when we see each other on Friday.”

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