Why did Hibs’ decent recent record against Celtic in Leith come to an end?

The biggest news story to have hit Scottish football this past week was Brendan Rodgers’ departure from Celtic to Leicester City. During the Northern Irishman’s reign, the Hoops won every domestic trophy there was to win. This come despite failing to beat Hibs in Leith whilst in charge.

Having seemingly conquered every ground, one bugbear was the fact that he failed to win at Easter Road whilst manager of Celtic. The Hoops had taken just one point from a potential six in Leith during Rodgers’ reign.


Easter Road, the home of Hibernian in Edinburgh, Scotland. (Photo by Christian Cooksey/Getty Images)

The capital hasn’t proved a happy destination for Rodgers’ Celtic. Hearts ended their 69 game domestic unbeaten run with a 4-0 battering at Tynecastle, one of only four league defeats last season.

However, Hibs’ record is more impressive, with Rodgers’ men having never come away from Leith with all three points. In Rodgers’ first season, Hibs were still in the Championship.

The following season, newly promoted Hibs held Celtic to a 2-2 draw in their first league meeting. This fixture took place the week before Hearts ended their unbeaten streak in December 2017, and the Hibees were unlucky not to win that game.

A stoppage time goal-line clearance from Mikael Lustig prevented them from beating Rodgers’ Celtic and ending their unbeaten domestic run.

Oli Shaw is mobbed by teammates having equalised for Hibs whilst former Hibee Scott Brown looks on.”Credit: Ian Jacobs “

The Hibees also beat them 2-1 in the first of their post-split fixtures last season thanks to goals from now-departed Jamie Maclaren and Vykintas Slivka.

So how did the Hoops knock Hibs out the Scottish Cup at Easter Road?

Hibs fans demand attacking football and the weekend’s performance saw them sit off the champions. What some can’t get their heads round is that they were up against their former manager, with some players having a point to prove.

So why did they not go all out to put Celtic under serious pressure and aim to exploit? That’s how sides have got the better of them domestically.

Having succeeded Neil Lennon at Hibs, Paul Heckingbottom’s side fell to a 2-0 defeat at the hands of their fomer manager’s Celtic side. (photo by Alan Rennie/Action Plus via Getty Images)

Allow Celtic to play and they’ve got players that can seriously punish. Get up and in their faces and they’re more prone to making mistakes.

Previous performances under Heckingbottom saw Hibs put sides to the sword. With nothing to lose, that should have been the case at the weekend.

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Categories: Analysis
Tags: Brendan RodgersCelticEaster RoadEdinburghHibernianHibsLeithNeil Lennonpaul heckingbottom