Hibs debrief: Alarm bells in the stand (and defence); Tavares decision; ref's big calls

A look back at Hibs’ 2-1 cinch Premiership defeat by Livingston at the Tony Macaroni Arena.

PLAYER OF THE MATCH

Only a handful get pass marks. David Marshall was faultless for both goals and pulled off a stunning save. Martin Boyle made a difference when he came on and although Nohan Kenneh could have done better to stop the opening goal, he put in a decent shift. Elie Youan was dangerous when moved to the left. But let’s give it to Ryan Porteous. He was pretty solid defensively, saw plenty of the ball and his passing in the second half opened Livi up a couple of times.

DEFINING MOMENT

Livingston's Stephen Omeonga challenges Martin Boyle in the box before the Hibs forward goes down, but the referee correctly waved play on. Picture: Alan Harvey / SNS

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502 Bad Gateway

502 Bad Gateway

When Chris Cadden almost tripped over his own feet to let Nouble charge through on goal for what should have been his second goal, it summed up Hibs’ afternoon. They struggled to deal with Nouble’s running power and sheer physicality all afternoon and too many Hibs players, Cadden included, were a long way short of their best.

YOU MAY HAVE MISSED

An emergency announcement half an hour before kick-off asked fans to leave the stadium. It turned out to be a false alarm but Hibs fans may have been better staying where they were outside until half time. Alarm bells must have been ringing again on the Hibs bench six minutes after kick-off when Joel Nouble slalomed through the defence to put Livingston in front.

BENEFIT OF HINDSIGHT

Jair Tavares failed to set the heather alight against St Johnstone and missed last week’s Edinburgh derby through suspension. If Lee Johnson could turn back the clock he would surely not have selected the 21-year-old Portuguese winger, who looked like a fish out of water and was hooked at half time. Elias Melkersen on the other wing wasn’t much better and went off with an injury. Boyle may be some way short of full match fitness but will surely start against Rangers.

REF WATCH

It was a tempestuous clash, particularly in the second half. In the circumstances, Craig Napier handled it very well. He got the Boyle penalty claim right. It wasn’t. But he should probably have shown Marijan Čabraja a second yellow card.

NEXT UP

It doesn’t get any easier with Rangers visiting Easter Road for a high noon clash on Saturday.