Neil Lennon believes Hibs have already put down a huge marker for next season with what he described as their “championship form” since the turn of the year.
After three seasons exiled in the second tier of Scottish football, the Easter Road side have returned to take the top flight by storm, still chasing a second-place finish with only two matches remaining.
That charge has been built on a run of 12 matches without defeat, while the Capital outfit have been beaten just once in their last 17 Premiership games, away to champions Celtic.
Admitting a “tinge” of disappointment at having to settle for a no-scoring draw at Aberdeen – the Dons like Rangers, rivals for that runners-up spot – Lennon said: “I’m delighted, the players have given me everything and we have put ourselves in a great position. It’s been a brilliant run, championship form since the turn of the year. It’s a statement of intent, not just for this season but for next year, that we can go to such places and not be intimidated, that we can deal with hostile crowds.
“We have come a long way this season and I hope that stands them in good stead going into future years.”
Lennon believes the race for second is likely to go into the final day when Rangers visit Easter Road and Aberdeen go to Celtic. Adamant tomorrow night’s derby against Hearts “will take care of itself”, the Hibs boss added: “Something has to give between Rangers and Aberdeen tonight. Anything can happen but hopefully we can take it into the final game.”