Hibs debrief: Gordon tribute, cost of injuries, McAlonie opportunity, set-play shortcomings
and live on Freeview channel 276
Hearts and Hibs joined forces to remember Ron Gordon, the executive chairman of Hibs who died on Tuesday, with t-shirts emblazoned with ‘RJG’ on the front and a minute’s silence. It has been a difficult week for all at the club but especially those in the women’s team.
Head coach Dean Gibson said: “We wanted a performance that was a reflection of Ron Gordon and everything he stood for. To do it in a derby says everything. He made a lot of dreams become reality for us.”
Hibs left counting cost of injuries
Hibs were without seven first-team players, while two needed patched up to even take their place in the starting line-up. Kirsty Morrison and Katie Lockwood were struggling towards the end but with limited options in reserve, Dean Gibson was unable to freshen things up and Hearts scored late on to cancel out Micky McAlonie’s 22nd-minute opener for Hibs. Even some of the subs weren’t fully fit, as the injury curse appears to have spread from the men’s team to the women.
Playing on the left of an attacking midfield trio, McAlonie took the game by the scruff of the neck in the first half and was the architect of much of Hibs’ good play.
Fierce in the tackle, she used the ball well and took her goal extremely well, and started the move that nearly produced a second for Hibs just before half-time when Eilidh Adams saw a shot deflected after McAlonie had combined with Katie Lockwood and Kirsty Morrison.
With Rachael Boyle and Shannon McGregor both long-term absentees, there will be an onus on McAlonie to step things up in the middle of the park.
One of Hibs’ biggest problems this season has been defending set-plays and it let them down again at Tynecastle when Hunter rose at the death to head home the equaliser. Gibson was tearing his hair out at yet another goal lost from a dead-ball situation, despite taking the positives from the game, and there is a feeling that they might be better off in the standings but for this one issue.