Jason Cummings today insisted Hibs will use the sight of Falkirk’s players wildly celebrating their stunning comeback to maintain a six-point lead in the race for second place in the Championship table to drive themselves on to promotion.
A double from Cummings, the 20-year-old striker taking his tally for the season to 23, appeared to have won the stuttering Easter Road outfit a vital three points on Tuesday night but head coach Alan Stubbs and his players were left stunned as David McCracken and Bob McHugh powered home two headers in the last four minutes to salvage what had seemed an unlikely 2-2 draw.
Those goals sparked jubilant scenes among the Bairns players and their fans, Falkirk boss Peter Houston cupping his ears to the home support before joining the celebrations.
While Falkirk – who ended the match with ten men after Aaron Muirhead was sent off – are in the driving seat, Hibs have two games in hand and, Cummings revealed, he and his team-mates won’t forget what they saw. He said: “We saw them celebrating with their fans at the end and that will drive us to get promotion. We will face Falkirk again in the play-offs. We said after the game that we saw the Falkirk players jumping around and celebrating and we made a point of saying to each other ‘make sure we don’t see that again’.”
And, Cummings disclosed, it was “Uncle Kev” [Kevin Thomson] who made sure the players had noted what had happened. The youngster said: “We call him Uncle Kev because he helps a few of the younger boys like myself, Hendo [Liam Henderson] and John McGinn out a lot.
“He is a wise head in the changing room. He is very experienced and is like a father figure to some of the younger lads. He is good to talk to and Uncle Kev has just stuck.
“It was him who mentioned the Falkirk players celebrating and said: ‘I hope you all saw that.’ Sometimes that sort of thing acts as a spur and drives you on to get a bit of revenge on them after they celebrated like that.”
However, Hibs’ hopes of pipping Falkirk to second place were dealt a blow today when it was learned midfield enforcer Marvin Bartley has been hit with a one-match suspension.
Bartley picked up his sixth league booking of the season for a first-half foul on Bairns attacker Myles Hippolyte and will now sit out the visit of Dumbarton on Tuesday, April 26.