Hearts Sporting Director Joe Savage makes Hibs comparison as he comments on Graeme Mathie exit
The former Motherwell and Coventry defender joined Hibs in the summer of 2014 following spells at Celtic and the Scottish FA, initially in the role of Head of Player ID and Recruitment before being promoted to the role of Sporting Director in 2019 after the retirement of Head of Football Operations George Craig.
Mathie played a crucial role in Hibs’ return to the Scottish Premiership and Scottish Cup success in 2016 but left Easter Road last month as owner Ron Gordon and chief executive Ben Kensell set about restructuring the club’s hierarchy.
While admitting that Hearts naturally want to outdo their Capital neighbours, Savage – who has outlined his ambitious plans for the Gorgie outfit – believes Mathie’s exit can benefit Robbie Neilson's side.
In an interview with The Athletic, Savage agreed that the 39-year-old leaving Hibs was a “bonus”, but hinted that there were lessons to be learned from how the Hibees had performed over the past few seasons, particularly during the 2020/21 season when they recorded a first third-place finish in more than 15 years and reached the latter stages of both domestic cup competitions.
"I probably do [see it as a bonus],” Savage said. “Looking at his work there, he created some good assets, finished third, reached a final.
"What Hibs do is nothing to do with me but we want to better their achievements as no one can deny they’ve done well the last couple of seasons.”