No room for 'blame culture' at Hibs, insists fan favourite

Sweet release as Cadden celebrates his first goal since December 24, 2022.Sweet release as Cadden celebrates his first goal since December 24, 2022.
Sweet release as Cadden celebrates his first goal since December 24, 2022.
Top-six hopes hanging by a threat after horrible home loss

Comeback kid Chris Cadden insists there will be no “blame culture” as Hibs look to salvage something from their calamitous campaign. And the fan favourite admitted that even the joy of scoring a first goal in over 15 months had been soured by Saturday’s home loss to St Johnstone.

Defeat leaves Hibs hoping that Dundee slip up at home to Rangers on Wednesday night and at Pittodrie on Saturday, as the final round of pre-split Scottish Premiership fixtures are played out. A win – or possibly even a draw, depending on events elsewhere – for Hibs at Fir Park would then put Monty’s men on the right side of the dividing line as Scotland’s elite division breaks into two mini-leagues.

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Cadden, who spent nine months rehabbing from an Achilles’ tendon rupture sustained in the final game of last season, was a hugely popular scorer as he swooped into net an equaliser against the Saints. But all of his best efforts counted for nothing as the loss of another set-piece goal – a recurring flaw for Hibs this season – gifted Craig Levein’s men victory at Easter Road.

“I’ve not seen them back, but the goals weren’t great,” said the fullback. “A set piece goal, as well, any time you lose to a set piece is gutting. We will look at it all.

“But there is no blame culture here. We look at it together, we win as a team, we lose as a team. We’ll look at what we can do better. Regardless of result, we’ll analyse our game on a Monday and go again. That’s all you can really do.

“I was obviously happy to get my first goal this season. But it’s disappointing because of the result. However pleased I might be personally to score, I’m still gutted with the result, because it wasn’t enough.”

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For a few moments, Hibs were effectively out of the race for a top six spot, with only Motherwell’s dramatic injury-time winner over Dundee at Dens turning the tables. Not that the Hibs players were aware of that as they trudged off the pitch with the sound of booing ringing in their ears.

“We heard about the Dundee result just after the game,” said Cadden. “We know how big next weekend could be now. We also know that wasn’t good enough from us. We know that.

“So now we have to focus on putting things right next weekend – and hoping things go our way. Unfortunately. I think there is a wee sense of relief that we’re still in it. But it’s mostly disappointed because this was a chance we could have taken, a chance we should have taken.

“That’s the way I feel, anyway. Maybe later in the week I’ll feel differently. But this was an opportunity missed, really. At home to St Johnstone, you have to be looking to win these games.

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“It is frustrating that it’s not in our own hands. But that’s the situation we’re in. We just have to channel it into next week.

“We need to take the disappointment and frustration of the situation, use that disappointment for next week. We wish it was in our own hands. Unfortunately, it’s not.

“I think we did put in a lot of effort. It’s an honest group, we’ll run into the ground for each other. And we’ve got quality off the bench, as well. Listen, effort is something we’ve got. Fight and determination aren’t a problem. We just lacked a wee bit of quality in the end.

“Of course we understand the supporter reaction. We’re all frustrated, as well. They want us to do well, they want us to win games. We need to rally and stick together. We know the quality we have in that team. Now we need to show it.”