Three things we learned from Hibs 2-0 Motherwell
Mark Atkinson picks out three Hibs-related observations from Saturday's clash with Motherwell ...
Stephane Omeonga put on midfield masterclass against Motherwell. It was probably the best individual performance from a Hibs midfielder since the halcyon days of John McGinn, Dylan McGeouch and Scott Allan last season. He did everything you want from a central midfielder - snapping into tackles, crisp, accurate passing and surging runs through the heart of the pitch. He was called into the Belgium Under-21 squad this week and it's clear Hibs have a classy operator on their hands. Head coach Paul Heckingbottom tried him out on the wing to begin with as he sussed the player out early in his tenure, but he soon realised he is best used in the centre. The only downside for Hibs is that he's not their player as he's on loan from Genoa. For now, it's best to enjoy his performances on the pitch - and off it, with regular piano-playing posts Instagram. He'll be a huge asset for the Hibees between now and the end of the campaign.
Veteran Australian midfielder Mark Milligan was asked to move from central midfield to defence to help cover for the suspended Darren McGregor. It's not an altogether alien role for Milligan - he has played at centre-half for his country - but with Hibs, he's been used there sporadically. Up against the aggressive and lively Curtis Main, Milligan did not put a foot wrong alongside Paul Hanlon. He was sound with his positioning and won most aerial duels. After a sticky winter, Milligan is starting to blossom again as spring arrives. His manager now knows he has a dependable centre-half as well as a midfielder.
Hibs deserve a lot of credit for the way they shut Motherwell up in the second half. Despite losing right-back and captain David Gray to injury on 48 minutes, the defence was rock-solid and the whole team kept their shape. The midfield tracked the visitors' runs forward, while Florian Kamberi and Daryl Horgan made sure that Well's wingers were not allowed a free pass at the full-backs too often. Heckingbottom has his team well-drilled and disciplined and it paid off in securing the points here.