Shaun Maloney: I know why Hibs lost league derby - we can use Gorgie grief to our advantage

Shaun Maloney is only too aware that last weekend’s Edinburgh derby result and second-half performance wasn’t good enough for a club of Hibs’ stature.

The Easter Road boss expressed his disappointment after the match and on the eve of the two teams meeting again, this time in the Scottish Cup semi-final at Hampden, he is determined to use the pain felt in Gorgie to his side’s advantage.

“I know the reasons we lost the game,” he states.

“We have to show on Saturday that we are not going to produce certain things we did and that will give us a better opportunity to win the game.

Shaun Maloney is confident his team has learned from their mistakes in the last derby

“I don’t want to speak too much about it but I was very clear that night and the very next morning on why that result happened. We have confidence in what we need to do this week to give ourselves the best opportunity to win.

"As always in football the talking will be done on the pitch and there’s no better place than Hampden in a semi-final.”

He has spoken to his players and outlined where Hearts caused Hibs problems, and why. He has also highlighted the positives from the performance, from a green and white point of view.

“We have to believe in how we’re playing and we have to continue to do so. If we can sustain that, then I’m very confident the result can be different.

“But we have to do it on the pitch.

“Those last 15 to 20 minutes against Hearts were very painful but we have to use that in the right way.

"You have to learn from why you got beaten, and the feeling why we did get beaten I hope never leaves me. There’s a reason why teams go and win things, players go and win things.

"Football is not easy, you have to use the really difficult moments, and they have to stay with you – and I’m pretty sure that feeling I had in certain moments on Saturday will stay with me for a long time.”

One player Maloney will hope can make a difference is Ryan Porteous, who will make a brief return from his four-game Scottish Premiership suspension to – ideally – strengthen the defence.

“He is just a big personality in big games. His performance in that derby was outstanding,” the Hibs boss continues.

"He showed big personality in the fight but also to play, so it’s a really big positive to have him back. I’m looking forward to seeing his performance.

"I hope he will bring out the best in others. He brings a certain character to our team that is definitely missing in the big games.”

Hearts have already secured third place and enjoyed a good season so far but consigning them to a derby defeat at Hampden could help their season end on a bit of a sour note – something Maloney believes his side can do come quarter past 12 on Saturday afternoon.

"They have been very consistent in the league but they also know that the first 25-30 minutes of last week’s game we were very good.

"They also know if we produce that over 90 minutes — and that’s the big question — that we change the narrative of their season,” Maloney finishes.

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