Hibs to face 'Jambos' in Premier Sports Cup draw laden with potential travel trouble

Hibs' Martin Boyle injured his knee while celebrating his disallowed goal against Aberdeen in last season’s League Cup semi-final loss at Hampden.Hibs' Martin Boyle injured his knee while celebrating his disallowed goal against Aberdeen in last season’s League Cup semi-final loss at Hampden.
Hibs' Martin Boyle injured his knee while celebrating his disallowed goal against Aberdeen in last season’s League Cup semi-final loss at Hampden.
Long trips to Elgin and Peterhead on the cards

Hibs will play Hearts – Kelty Hearts – in the Premier Sports Cup group stages, as the three-time winners kick off season 2024-25 with domestic business. And the managerless Hibees could also be spending hours on the road after being pitched into Group C at today’s draw, with both Elgin and Peterhead in their section.

The SPFL have yet to confirm fixtures for the group, which also includes Queen’s Park, who finished eighth in the Championship last season, as second seeds. The format for the competition will see each team play two home games and two away, with Hibs clearly hoping to avoid at least one long journey north. The opening round of fixtures is scheduled for the weekend of July 13/14, with the final groups games being played just two weeks later.

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With the five Scottish Premiership teams involved in UEFA competition all given a bye to the last 16, group winners and the three best runners-up will progress from the opening stage. Clubs will be playing for record prize and TV money, following last week’s announcement of a £3.5 million pay-out for the season 2024-26 competition. The new fund, an increase of almost 15 per cent on last year, will guarantee every competing team at least £30,000 – and reward the winners with a whopping £400,000.

Hibs reached the semi-finals of the competition last season, losing 1-0 to Aberdeen at Hampden. Winners in seasons 1972-73, 1991-92 and 2006-07, the Edinburgh club last played the group stages in season 2022-23, a cursed campaign that saw them lose 1-0 to Falkirk before eliminated after fielding an ineligible player against Greenock Morton.