Hibs debrief: Winning without Doidge a good sign but attack needs beefed up

While Hibs will miss the industry and goals of Christian Doidge who is sidelined until Christmas, perhaps the striker’s absence will not be so keenly felt if Kevin Nisbet and Kyle Magennis can keep up their hard work and efforts in front of goal.

Monday, 16th August 2021, 7:00 am
Updated Monday, 16th August 2021, 9:17 am
Hibs defender Darren McGregor keeps a close eye on former Easter Road team-mate Stephen McGinn during Sunday's Premier Sports Cup win against Kilmarnock

An Achilles injury has left Doidge in a moonboot and hobbling around on crutches and Jack Ross has already said the 28-year-old’s injury lay-off will accelerate the search for attacking reinforcements.

But Hibs worked hard to secure victory against a decent Kilmarnock side without the former Forest Green Rovers forward’s input.

Nisbet has struggled at times as a lone striker but with an attacking trio of Martin Boyle, Magennis, and Jamie Murphy behind him his task is becoming easier with each passing game.

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Hibs were lucky last season in that Boyle, Doidge, and Nisbet all made it through the season without any major injuries and scored more than 40 goals between them.

Magennis might well be trying to beat that target on his own but regardless of Sunday’s success the forward line does need bolstering if Hibs are serious about returning to Europe and building on last season.

Hibs will face sterner tests between now and Christmas but it bodes well if they can win games without key players.

Player of the match

Nisbet and Magennis both put in a shift but perhaps more impressive was Darren McGregor’s faultless display at the back – a big reaction to Thursday night’s red card.

Defining moment

Liam Polworth smacking a ferocious drive off the underside of the crossbar certainly gave Hibs a bit of a jolt but the opening goal probably settled the side and helped them go on to win fairly comfortably in the end.

Ref watch

The big talking point was Bobby Madden’s reaction to the hamstring injury suffered by Chris Stokes. The Killie captain crumpled to the deck leaving Magennis with a clear path to goal. In terms of sportsmanship it was the right decision and it ended up having little bearing on the game. But what if it had…?

Moment you may have missed

Owner Ron Gordon and chief executive Ben Kensell applauding the fans, as well as a little fist pump from the American-based businessman. They get Hibs, and are not shy about showing the supporters that they are all on the same side.

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