'Even Josh Doig's parents haven't seen him play for Hibs' - Jack Ross on players' family getting into Scottish Cup final
News that there will be fans at the Scottish Cup final could offer Hibs players a memorable end to an unforgettable season.
But, it is not just the thought of supporters returning to the stands that appeals – it is the opportunity to have their loved ones present as well.
Easter Road manager Jack Ross said that while his squad have learned to accept playing in empty stadia, with no fans, family or friends there to cheer them on, news that the SFA will open the doors to a limited number of spectators has prompted a shift in mindset.
“It’s strange because the players have been quite accepting that there’s no fans inside stadiums,” said Ross.
“But, for example, Josh Doig’s parents haven’t seen him play for Hibs first team yet.
“Because everything moves so quickly you sometimes forget things like that.
“It would be pretty incredible if the first time Josh’s parents got to see him play for the first team was in the Scottish Cup final. Winning it would be even better!”
The last time Hibs played in front of fans was on March 7 last year, when the team travelled to Pittodrie for their final match before last season was curtailed and the country headed into lockdown.
This season, restrictions mean that many of the first team have not turned out in front of a Hibs crowd, while many family members have been denied the opportunity to see players star in the Premiership or at the national stadium, on cup duty or international business.
“That’s pretty remarkable but equally we have all been accepting of it because there’s a lot of things we’ve not been able to do for the last year. It’s a bit sore for the players though.
“So probably the dynamics changing slightly and the players suddenly thinking they might get their wife, or parents, or kids, or whoever into the stadium is making them reassess and realise how much they’d like them to be there.
“To go from almost making peace that they won’t have anyone there to realising they might - it would be fantastic if they could. It means a lot to people and naturally you would want to share the occasion with those closest to you.”