Hibs boss Dean Gibson feels 4-0 scoreline flatters Rangers as Siobhan Hunter makes surprise return
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The Edinburgh side came into the game on better form points-wise compared to the reigning SWPL champions, after winning four of their last five league games.It showed for nearly an hour, Hibs matching the hosts. But three Rangers goals in 15 minutes ultimately condemned Hibs to defeat.
“It’s frustrating”, Dean Gibson told the Edinburgh Evening News. “I don’t think it’s a 4-0 game. First half we came with a game plan to try and frustrate Rangers and we did that. They never created anything from open play and had shots from distance. Then we lose a goal from a set play and its a bit disheartening because of everything you have worked to do. Taking it level at half time is underdone by one set-play that’s avoidable.
“The first half wasn’t pretty, but against a team like Rangers you have to stay compact and try and keep the score down. Then you try and open them up to win the game. The plan was first half stay compact, second half go after them. Unfortunately, we had to open up a little bit early. The goals we conceded were poor, they were never played through, it was one ball over the top. It was frustrating.”
After 25 minutes Rangers took the lead through Davison. A Corner is whipped in and she headed home. Kathy Hill thought she had scored the hosts’ second when she slammed the ball into the back of the net after Benedicte Haaland’s save. However, she was an offside position. Hibs were almost through one-on-one late on as Lucy Parry powered forward but Rachel McLauchlan slid in quickly to clear.
Hibs started the second half well as they tried to work an opening. Rosie Livingstone produced a half chance early on as she carried the ball down the left but sent her cross straight at the keeper.
The hosts soon doubled their lead through Howat. The striker got on the end of a long ball to slot home 57 minutes in. Howat made it three. From another long ball, she took it over Haaland’s head and proceeded to tap into the an empty net. Two minutes later, Davison got her second as she headed into the net from a corner to round off the win.
Siobhan Hunter started for Hibs despite looking like her season may have ended last weekend when she was forced off with an injury. Gibson was full of praise for the player for making such a shift return.
“Hunter is a player who will never want to miss a game”, Gibson added. “It looked like a bad injury on Sunday and it looked like it would be a season ended for her. It’s a credit to her that she is back on the pitch. Obviously, the injury wasn’t as bad as first feared which can happen.
“She was brilliant and in these games where you have to defend a little bit deeper. When there’s a lot for her to do, that’s when she’s at her best. For her to perform the way she did on the back of Sunday is a credit to herself.”