Hibs hero names the chaos factor which awaits Montgomery's side at Hearts as one thing goes out the window

The Hibs hero has shared his thoughts with the Edinburgh Evening News on how the match with Hearts may go, and more.
Derby day in Edinburgh between Hearts and Hibs is looming.Derby day in Edinburgh between Hearts and Hibs is looming.
Derby day in Edinburgh between Hearts and Hibs is looming.

They are matches influenced by chaos and frantic excitement - that's Rob Jones' experience anyway.

The 44-year-old is now a coach within the youth ranks at English Championship side Middlesbrough, but he'll have a keen eye on proceedings at Tynecastle as former club Hibs head to Hearts in what could be the final Edinburgh derby of the season. Nick Montgomery's side are in the bottom six and a win on Wednesday would be key to ensuring they meet Hearts again after the split.

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Steven Naismith's men will likely hold a favourites tag in the eyes of many, with their firm grip on third spot. Jones joined Hibs in 2006 and wrote his name into Easter Road folklore by captaining the side to the 2007 League Cup.

On that run to Hampden, there was a derby that lives long in the memory of Hibees, a 1-0 win over Hearts at the quarter-final stage. It wasn't Jones' only derby experience, but it was one that taught him all about the frantic nature some Hibs stars will experience for the first time this midweek.

"That was an awful long time ago,", Jones told the Edinburgh Evening News. "You win 1-0 in the quarter-final, a midweek night. It's always nice to beat the neighbours but also to put them out the cup you went on to win.

"Edinburgh derbies are fixated with chaos, noise, enthusiasm, excitement, turbulence at times, like any other derby. It was a different atmosphere not just in the stadium but in the build-up the week before. It is always different playing your local rivals because everyone wants bragging rights. "

Rob Jones (left) scoring the opener back in 2006Rob Jones (left) scoring the opener back in 2006
Rob Jones (left) scoring the opener back in 2006
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There is a decision to be made on the futures of Lewis Stevenson and Paul Hanlon after the end of this season. Both veterans were teammates of Jones in the early stages of their Hibs careers and they'll be keen to have another derby moment of glory added to their CV. What comes next is entirely up to them.

"They are two players who have seen it and done it an awful lot," Jones explained. "They have probably had more managers than I had. It makes me feel quite old talking about them reaching the latter part of their careers. These people are vital, they know the club inside-out, they have been through this kind of transition phase many times.

"That experience, knowledge and know-how, and I am sure others lean upon them. It will be up to Paul and Lewis to decide what they want to do and where they want to go next, and how they want it to be."

Montgomery is the man at the helm for Hibs right now, after taking over from Lee Johnson earlier this season. Jones has been impressed with how the playing squad have adapted to the former Central Coast Mariners boss' methods, but now consistency is the target.

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Weighing in on how Wednesday's fixture could go, there is one football cliché that is left at the door. But two things remain a constant in games like this.

"You go from one instruction and one voice to another voice and another instruction," Jones added. "That takes time, regardless of whatever environment you are in. The new manager comes in with his own style, own thoughts, coming over from Australia.

"The group of players have adapted well to what the manager wants to do and it's now about moving those draws to wins, and getting just rewards for good performances. The points would be vital and the win would be extremely important.

"The fact it's a derby adds that extra bit of spice. On the Hearts point of view, they will want to cement the position they are. The phrase 'it's just another game' is probably despondent and redundant in this scenario. It's a derby supporters want the bragging rights and players want to win football matches."

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