Hibs debrief: Good run of form continues but international break will bring benefits
There was no shortage of talking points at Easter Road on Saturday as goals from Kevin Nisbet and Martin Boyle maintained Jack Ross’ side unbeaten start to the season and kept them top of the Scottish Premiership.
Middlesbrough defender Nathan Wood watched on ahead of an imminent loan switch but he might have his work cut out displacing Ryan Porteous and Darren McGregor who kept a clean sheet at the back.
It was hard not to feel sorry for Livingston boss David Martindale as he spent close to 15 minutes outlining the various injury and health issues in his squad after the game but Hibs aren’t without their own injury concerns and they may have another one after Jamie Murphy was forced off in the first half.
But this was a straightforward victory for Hibs, in the type of game they have struggled to win in recent seasons. There may have been no goals in the first half but it did feel like a case of “when” rather than “if” they would finally beat Max Stryjek and so Nisbet proved five minutes into the second period.
Boyle added gloss to the result and while the players might not want the international break to disrupt their fine run of form, the chance to get a few more bodies back before the Edinburgh derby on September 12 will be most welcome.
Player of the match
Boyle continues to be a thorn in the side of every opposition full-back and topped off his performance with a goal while Josh Doig put in an assured display at left-back.
Nisbet’s goal. Once he found the net, it looked like there would only be one winner.
Steven McLean irritated both sets of fans throughout with his decisions. Turned down Livi shouts for a penalty in the first half and tried to let the game flow – but he was possibly a bit more lenient with both sides than supporters would have liked.
Moment you may have missed
Boyle is the first player since Celtic’s Scott Sinclair in 2016/17 to score in each of the first four Scottish Premiership games.