Former Scotland No. 1 is the undisputed first choice, keeping Hibs in games with big saves and leading build-up from the back.Former Scotland No. 1 is the undisputed first choice, keeping Hibs in games with big saves and leading build-up from the back.
Former Scotland No. 1 is the undisputed first choice, keeping Hibs in games with big saves and leading build-up from the back. | SNS Group

Hibs boss has decisions to make ahead of derby challenge

How Monty's men are likely to line up at Tynecastle

A first league win since December 9 undoubtedly boosted morale in the Hibs camp. And the weekend victory over Dundee, a battling 2-1 triumph capped by a wonderful Myziane Maolida goal, gives manager Nick Montgomery an unusual problem ahead of tomorrow night’s Edinburgh derby.

For the first time since he replaced Lee Johnson during the September international window, Monty has selection issues. Players competing for starting positions. Decisions to make.

The return of Rocky Bushiri on Saturday seemed to make some difference to a back four that had been leaking goals at a rate of about one-and-a-half per game. If nothing else, Will Fish seems to play better when he’s partnered with the Democratic Republic of Congo internationalist, just back from AFCON duty.

Nathan Moriah-Welsh has added some athleticism and astute decision making, certainly on the defensive side, to midfield. And Maolida has the potential – as yet untapped – to tear through the Scottish Premiership.

Does Montgomery go with an unchanged XI, assuming everyone is fit? It would be hard to drop anyone from the weekend, although Hearts at Tynecastle are a very different proposition to Dundee at Easter Road.

Emiliano Marcondes may be sacrificed in the No.10 role, his place taken by a more orthodox and combative midfielder. Dylan Vente scoring from the penalty spot and playing well means he’s likely to start up top, although Maolida can also play as centre-forward, opening up the possibility of another wide player getting a start.

What is beyond doubt is that, regardless of starting XI, Hibs will have impact players on the bench. That’s new. And not unwelcome. Here’s how we think Monty’s men might line up:

The return of Rocky Bushiri on Saturday seemed to make some difference to a back four that had been leaking goals at a rate of about one-and-a-half per game. If nothing else, Will Fish seems to play better when he’s partnered with the Democratic Republic of Congo internationalist, just back from AFCON duty.

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