Author Archives for Gemma

About Gemma

Football fan absolutely daft on Hibernian and Liverpool and big fan of Barcelona. Love writing about football but also many other topics as well. Local news, world wide news and write opinion articles as well. Live and love life. :)

Ploughing the Tynecastle field, Hibs, Hibs woah oh oh oh oh oh

Another cup run, another fifth round meeting with Hearts at Tynecastle, another draw, another replay at Easter Road.  Another seethe from Hearts fans who can only come at us with “celebrating a draw”.

Watching on TV Sunday it was clear that Hibs fans were backing our team.  The best I have heard in a while.  The whole away end singing and backing the team.  That’s the difference.  That’s what we do.  It’s hardly “celebrating a draw” to support your team to the 90th minute.

However, singing in the home stands at Tynecastle appears to be an offence.  A few brave souls clad in maroon and white did try a half-hearted attempt before the start of the match but after that it was if they’d all gone home.  The difference between Hibs and Hearts at the moment are that Hibs fans are supporting the team.  In a key game the fans got out there and backed the team.  The team will always respond to that.  If there had been a moment in the game that would have seen Hibs heads go down the fans would have lifted them right up again.

The input on matchday that Hearts fans give is dreadful.  This is from the “big” team, the one that rules the city.  They’re going to outsing us in the replay, apparently.  By singing what exactly? They haven’t replaced the song book they lost on the 21st of May 2016 at 90+2.  Maybe Ian Cathro can look up some on his magic iPad.

I’ll admit to nerves going into Sunday’s derby but then it’s a derby and I always do have them despite how confident I am.  I don’t always agree with everything Neil Lennon does but when the starting XI was put out I knew straight away that this was the best team for this match.  From the players he was able to select from he got it spot on (I’m sure he’ll be glad to hear that haha).  Derby experience and toughness in there.  Only Holty and Marciano having never experienced the Edinburgh derby before but no worries there.

It might have been Cathro and Lennon’s debut derby but Lenny has the advantage of being a player and a manager in the most hated filled of derbies in the west of the country.  He’d obviously done his homework on Hearts.  They were filled with a bit of confidence after deafeating a terrible Rangers team and ten-man Motherwell.

Hibs were always going to dominate.  It was evident from the moment the game started.  It’s not that Hearts were dreadful (they were) but that there was very little derby-experienced players in there.  Ah well.

It was always going to be hard to play free-flowing football on a pitch that looks like it’s just been dug up for tattie season.  I know Anne is desperate to get the money for the new stand but using the pitch for growing spuds has not been one of her better ideas, it has to be said.

In his after match interview Cathro said he would have liked to have seen more free flowing football… On a lumpy pitch, Ian? Really? Did you even take a look at the pitch before thinking up the tactics or did the magic iPad come up with that one?

Hibs were, to a man, great on Sunday lunchtime.  No complaints about anyone.  Bartley’s back pocket was bulging, Don Cowie will never go near Darren McGregor again, Marciano, just back from a knock, knew exactly where the ball was at the right time.  John McGinn taking on two or three at a time, sometimes lost the ball but always got it back.  The team flew.

There’s always the threat that Hearts will get their usual penalty and that was the only danger they threatened us with.  Their ten minute sparky spell after half time fizzed out easily.  Referee Willie Collum was actually pretty fair throughout the match, he picked up on the dirty tactics of a home team who were just way out of their depth.

Holty has his critics, I am not one.  He was in the team today to add toughness and it worked.  No longer will Hibs be bossed on the pitch.  We’ve needed this toughness for a long time and today it was there in abundance and it worked.  We have been too soft before and we have lost concentration before but neither was a worry on Sunday.

Meanwhile at Ibrox…

Friday night was interesting.  Flicking through Twitter and suddenly there’s a Rangers statement regarding Mark Warburton.  Rangers statements are always comedy gold so it was clicked on and read.  After that was a complete shambles.  Rangers had accepted his resignation, Warburton denied having tendered it.  Should have a word with your agent about that Warbs.  That’s what happens when you try and sneak a move to another club and send your agent in to speak to your bosses.  Despite Rangers JUST getting by Morton on Sunday afternoon (and Morton missed a great chance to take the tie to a replay) the headlines are never about the football at that club.

So on to  the replay on the 22nd.  A Wednesday evening at 19:45.  Football under the lights.  If it’s not 3pm on a Saturday it should be mid-week under the lights.  We love it.  We LOVE it.  If any Hearts fan thinks they’re coming to Easter Road to skelp us then think again.  We won’t be outsung and you won’t put us out the cup.  That honour will be for Ayr.

GGTTH

Snatching a draw from the jaws of defeat

With a massive Cup Derby coming up in a weeks time it was pretty much guaranteed that Hibs would do something insane while Hearts seem to have upped their game.

In the fourth minute our defence went slapstick, didn’t have a clue what was happening.  Ross Laidlaw watched his defence crumble in front of him and tried to guess what the hell they were up to before Robert Crawford got his toe on the ball.  Laidlaw saw it but was only able to help parry it into the net after being slightly wrong footed thanks to his defences shocking display in front of goal.

From where I was sitting it looked like every defensive player seemed to assume that every other player was going to do something about it.  Legs flew, feet missing the ball all over the place.  It was shambolic to watch.  The sooner Paul Hanlon is back and fit the better.

The team selection was another baffler.  Cummings on the bench and Shinnie on! I have been asked if I have heard of squad rotation.  Yes I have, but you don’t rotate your squad every week.  You find a winning team and you put them out every week with as little change as possible.  If Lennon hasn’t settled on a league first team by February then there’s a worry.

To a man the team was rank rotten in the first half.  Lennon had a big job to do at half time and thankfully it worked.  Pushed more and seemed to want it.  They tightened up a bit at the back but still worryingly bad.  The mutterings around me suggested that it still seemed more likely that Ayr would score again.

The crowd sighed with relief when Lennon finally brought Shinnie off and put Cummings on in the 60th minute and in the 74th Jason would do what we all expect of him. He scored.  He got us a point that we desperately needed at that moment.  It would be even more of a result as later in the evening Dundee United would beat Raith 3-0.  Instead of extending our lead or seeing it remain the same we actually managed to reduce it.

HOWEVER.  That’s league business.  We’ve still got a lead and Saturday will just be put down to…um…*lifts carpet and sweeps under*.  Scottish Cup date next Sunday with those on the other side of town.  They’ve won their last two league games against a shoddy Rangers side and a 10 man Motherwell side.  Fair enough some of their play is good, their new boys have hit the pitch running.  Their new boys haven’t experienced a derby where the majority of our team has and and not just a derby but a cup derby where we went 2-0 down before and we all know how that worked out.  Nothing is certain in the Edinburgh derby and this one is extra special.  Hearts could put the current cup holders out.  Something they’ll probably try and create a new song book about should it happen.  Or, Hibs could overcome them, put their rivals out and continue on another cup run.

Hands held up, it would hurt to go out to them but I have all my memorabilia from the Scottish Cup.  I was there.  I saw history being made.  I have touched the Scottish Cup with Hibs ribbons on it, I have held it.  I have been on the parade.  I have the memories of one of the greatest days in Hiberian history and no one will EVER take that away from me nor any other Hibby.

The reason for this is because, above all, promotion is our target.  That is clear.  That is what this season is all about.  It’s time we went up.  No ifs, no buts.  Another cup run and even another cup would be a bonus but the goal is promotion and that is what we have to concentrate on.  That is what we will concentrate on.

In other news;

Hearts fans outdid themselves on their own forum this weekend when they picked up on a Hibs fan selling derby tickets.  They dedicated an entire thread to this, failing to realise the humour behind the tweet and anyone who did point out they were being taken for ride was beaten down. Thank you Jambos for keeping us all amused, yet again.

Elsewhere, James Tavernier hit the media with his thoughts on closing the the gap with Celtic on the weekend Rangers slipped to third on goal difference to Aberdeen.  WATP: We Are Third Place.

The transfer window was not kind to us.  Stokes nearly signed.  Hendo never was and good luck to him as he seems to be impressing Rodgers.  The lad has Hibs in his blood so forever behind him.

Until we meet again Hibernian followers, likely after the derby, Keep the Faith.  We Do What We Want.

GGTTH always.

More glory at Tynecastle for Hibs and a sozzled Sir Rod

I cannot be the only Hibs fan thinking how lucky an escape we had by not taking on Ian Cathro.  He was in the mix after the departure of T**** B****** but thankfully the job went to Alan Stubbs.

Watching Cathro’s recent work and some of his interviews I can’t see that he would have turned up at East Mains during the very low mood following relegation and made it any better.  Not the way Stubbsy did, he just rocked up and changed the mood, along with Leeann Dempster of course.

Cathro is apparently “raging” with the SFA plan to have Hearts replay with Raith at Tynecastle this Wednesday.  What can I say? Coach your team to not go ahead and then f*** it up perhaps?

His interview with the BBC after Sundays draw at Starks Park was terrible to say the least.  He fumbled his words, looked like he was going to cry and certainly didn’t come across as a confident manager at all.

This on a day when the Hearts support sang “Hearts, Hearts, Glorious Hearts” on replay (the rest of their songbook having been erased on 21st May 2016), cheered an opponent coming on, watched him set up Declan McManus for the equaliser and then booed their own team at the final whistle.  Poor wee mixed up Jambos.

Perhaps Ian Cathro is questioning his move to Gorgie and I wouldn’t blame him(for many reasons!).  He was well thought of at Newcastle and perhaps should have stayed there a while longer working as an assistant and gaining more experience.  He’s only thirty, plenty years ahead for being a first team coach at any club.

Anyway.  Back to the Pride of the City, Hibernian.  A trip to Tynecastle on Saturday for the start of our Scottish Cup defence.  Fitting that the tie was at Tynecastle given that’s where it all turned for us last season.  Remember that 2-0 lead that Hearts had and then blew? How could anyone forget haha.

Bonnyrigg Rose were our opponents.  Certainly a team to be wary of.  They’d knocked out Dumbarton to set up the tie with us.  The fans were certainly up for it with their ticket allocation sold out almost immediately, meaning that nearly 5,000 Rose fans were getting behind the team at Tynecastle.

Lennon made sure Hibs did their homework on Bonnyrigg Rose and there was no chance we were taking this lightly.  Unlike down in England where the FA Cup seems to have become a chance to run out youth players rather than anything else.  However, we’re in Scotland and the teams here want to win the Scottish Cup.  Lennon had the team taking this game seriously and that was evident right from the start.  It’s fair to say that Hibs never take any game for granted these days.  We’ve learned lessons about that in the past.

There was a minutes silence at the start of the match for former Rose player, Shaun Woodburn who died at the start of the month.  His funeral is on the 27th of January at Warriston.  Family flowers only but if desired then donations can be made Street Soccer Scotland.

BonnyRigg started the game well but Shinnie soon opened the scoring, Keatings doubling the score moments later.

However, in his first match back, keeper Marciano was forced off the pitch after a clattering.  Ross Laidlaw (who should have started anyway, in my humble opinion) donned the gloves.  The only real effort he would have to make was to try and save a penalty.  Dean Hoskins slotted the ball in though.

I have to admit to having a slight “fear” at half-time.  We were up 3-1 but still…well, we’re not the team in Edinburgh who cocks up decent leads anymore.  Of course we went on to win it 8-1.  That included a debut goal for Chris Humphrey as well.  He’s shaping up to be a really good signing.

The team is looking good at the moment.  I may have mentioned before that I wasn’t over the moon about Lennon coming in to take over but so far he is proving me wrong.  While Stubbsy brought back the positivity, the feel good factor and gelled the team, Lennon has kept all that and added more.  He’s made the team hard.  They’re not scared of anyone and it shows.  I wouldn’t say we were entirely fearless but it’s getting there.

So, onto the Scottish Cup fifth round draw.  Alan Stubbs made his way from the TV studio to make the draw and Sir Rod Stewart made his way from hospitality.  He’d certainly made the most of being in hospitality as everyone was aware when he appeared to pinch Alan McRae’s bottom.  The SFA President didn’t know where to look.  Sir Rod exuberantly picked the home teams while an amused Stubbsy picked the away teams.  Perhaps distracted by Sir Rod’s antics, Stubbsy then proceeded to mix up the number 6 and the number 9.

Sir Rod and Stubbsy have since been called a disgrace as angry football fans compared them to Rod Hull and Emu.  You can read the rest of the seethe here.

Well, Sir Rod pulled out Raith or Hearts as the home team and Stubbsy pulled out their opponents…yep The Mighty Hibees.

While Hearts fans took to Twitter to complain about the tie, Hibs fans were quite the opposite.  I, personally, want to go to Tynecastle and play Hearts but in reality I think we’re heading to Starks Park for the Fifth round tie.

Whatever happens on Wednesday it’s still GGTTH!

Feeling Good at Easter Road

Saturday

Finally thawed out enough to try typing so here’s my thoughts on Saturday’s game at Easter Road versus Queen of the South.

Queen of the South have not had the start to the season they would have preferred and are currently floating about in the middle of the table with five wins, five losses and three draws.  On paper it should be an easy win but Hibs never take anything for granted and ran out onto the pitch to make sure the three points were ours. Continue reading

Santa Forgot

This is the fantastic video from Alzheimer’s Research UK.  It centres around Santa having Alzheimers himself and not longer remembers what he does and how special he is to so many people.

My own Nana died from Alzheimer’s and I know of so many more who have too.  If you can afford it then please donate, if you can’t then sharing this helps more than you will know.

There is a cure for Alzheimer’s, it’s just not been found yet.  It’s there and we will find it.

Everyone is important to the research and fight to stop this disease.  Those who wear the white coats and spend their days testing drugs and analysing data.  Those who suffer from it.  Those who campaign to raise awareness.  Those who donate. Those who share every chance to get the message out to people.  Everyone is involved.

Put it in the NET! And Bring Back Hendo…

Finally escaped to write this.

So, Saturday afternoon brought us Falkirk at Easter Road.  Despite Falkirk forgetting how to play football it was never going to to be a match-up to take lightly.

Falkirk are further down the league that they would want to be at this point in the season but it’s easy to see why.  For one I think they’ve had secret coaching sessions with Terry B****** on how to play Hoofball along with a few attempts at Head Tennis.  Houston seems to have lost the plot with this seasons Falkirk squad.  His problem though.

Ours is that we can’t get the ball in the back of the net.  Not consistently.  Saturday was very much testament to that.  With 18 corners and numerous other chanced it’s beyond me why were didn’t have a few on the scoreboard before half time.

Part of it is that Falkirk played defensive right from the kick off.  They weren’t playing to win, they were playing to not lose it, there is a difference.  They just tightened up even more after Taiwo was sent off for his insane two footed tackle on John McGinn leaving them with ten men from 23 minutes onwards.

When Hibs play football we play football.  We’re classy and we can tear through teams when we really want to and we did in parts on Saturday afternoon.  Some respect must be given to the Bairns ‘keeper Danny Rogers.  He pulled off a few decent saves that did deny us goals.

Yet something is just not right.

Grant Holt is fast becoming one of my favourite players.  His effort is amazing.  He put up with a lot today, a few fouls on him that the referee and lino’s seemed to have missed as if they were watching the other channel.

The game was feisty which wasn’t a problem at all, Hibs and Falkirk were close rivals all last season and it shouldn’t be a shock that it would remain the same this season.  Stubbs may be gone but Houston won’t have forgotten the jibes last season.  Beating Hibs on Saturday would have made his shiny bald head beam with happiness.

However, to win you need goals and Hibs ‘keeper Ross Laidlaw was a mere spectator for the majority of the game.  While Hibs didn’t score any more goals than Falkirk we did create many more chances and Danny Rogers goalmouth was a busy one.  Aside from Falkirk’s goal (and no, Marciano wouldn’t have saved it either) the groundskeepers would be happy enough that both ends only dealt with forty-five minutes of action.

We played well on Saturday, I would think that there would be very few people who would disagree with that.  The team have gelled.  There were a few loose passes but they looked like they were small communication issues rather than anything major going on.  We tried to play our football game but as soon as Falkirk got on the ball they just hoofed it about until we took it off them again.  Frustrating.

Frustration might be the word of the game.  Almost 100% effort for the entire match from the whole team, including the subs, and we just end up with a point.  It’s the story of Hibs and not just limited to this season.

How many times must we sit and watch a player who could take a shot then pass it out wide? Set play nonsense.  TAKE THE BLOODY SHOT! If you keep battering it in then you batter the defence, yet we seem to be running up, creating mayhem then dampening it down by passing out (almost literally!) and letting the opposition regroup.  Or, in Falkirks case, just group!

MOTM Darren McGregor has really proved himself in recent weeks.  On Saturday he was all over Falkirks apparent lone striker.  They started with a 4-4-2 with Baird and Miller upfront but they were generally called back to muck in with defensive duties.

El Capitano was a little off his game on Saturday.  Nothing major and he worked hard but there was something amiss from Sir David’s game.  Temporary I am sure.

I’m still not sure why JC is not getting a start.  Our top scorer and no one is showing any signs of wanting topple him from that.  Nineteen minutes at the end of a game isn’t enough for him.  He’s not being allowed to build up a strike force with anyone.  Jason needs fed.  He won’t pick up a ball at the halfway line and run with it, he needs service.  Probably more service than other strikers but he does need it.  Jason will score if Jason is given the right build up.

Can’t fault the team as a whole.  I’ve seen Lewis Stevenson questioned in the aftermath of the match yet Falkirk generally forgot about him for most of the match and he loomed around unmarked, especially in the second half.  Fonts didn’t have the game I would have thought he had but I would imagine he knows that.

I still think we’re missing Liam Henderson.  Probably my favourite on loan player of recent years.  He played his heart out for Hibs.  No one could deny his spirit and his love for a club he was only sent to in order to gain experience.  He became a hero with Hibs and if he never does anything else in his career then he was part of the Time For Heroes team.  He’ll never be forgotten for that.  And guess what? He wants to come back.  Get working on it Hibs.  If there’s one thing we know about Hendo it’s that he knows how to deliver.

GGTTH 💚

Site under reconstruction

Not satisfied with a quick change I have gone for the full whack.  I also want to do this without closing the site down for any reason.  All content is still available all of the time.

It is driving me slightly insane at the moment as I have to update each individual post to create the site that I want.  Well, almost the site I want.

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