Martin Boyle was the hero at Easter Road as his double helped hand Hibs a 3-0 win over Aberdeen.
Nothing could separate the sides in the opening 30 minutes, with Stevie Mallan and Sam Cosgrove going close for either side.
Five minutes after the restart is when the game had its first goal. A wonderful pass through the defence from Scott Allan allowed Boyle to nip in and hand Hibs the lead.
He had his second just over 20 minutes from time, holding off Andy Considine to slot past Lewis. Florian Kamberi then added a superb solo goal to end the game. This result puts Hibs one point off fifth whilst Aberdeen drop to fourth.
Here are three things we learned.
Some Hibs fans calling for Ofir Marciano’s return were rewarded as the 30-year-old international came in for his first appearance between the sticks since September.
It was an assured performance from the Hibees stopper. He was first called into action when Cosgrove’s effort was turned round the post. There was one shaky moment before the 20-minute mark as a loose short pass almost allowed Cosgrove in, but crisis was eventually averted.
He then made a fantastic double save from a James Wilson and Cosgrove double as the Dons broke up the park and was rarely tested after the break.
Contrasting styles in the middle
Both sides opted for three midfielders and they were both different. Hibs’ looked more attacking, fielding Stevie Mallan and Allan with Melker Hallberg behind them. Aberdeen meanwhile had gone more box to box in nature with Zak Vyner screening the backline and Lewis Ferguson and Jon Gallagher in front.
Hibs pair Allan and Mallan weren’t given a moment of peace by Ferguson and were met with the aggressive Vyner further forward. At the other end, Hallberg faced up against Gallagher, who was playing just off Cosgrove.
It was even in the first half. Hallberg contained Gallagher pretty well whilst Ferguson and Vyner just about got the better of Allan and Mallan. The battle was won by Hibs in the second as Allan’s wonderful pass allowed Boyle to score before the Hibees got their second and Kamberi finished the job.
Boyle and Kamberi add killer touch
There was nothing to split either side in the first half, so it was always going to take individual quality to win the game. Step forward Boyle and Kamberi, who both stole the show in the second half.
Boyle’s double put Hibs on easy street and Kamberi won’t score many better goals this season than his effort against the Dons. It wasn’t just the goals though that made their displays special.
Both of them were very positive in their play, looking to pick the ball up and run at the Dons defence. They couldn’t handle it at times and the Hibs pair were clinical when given the opportunity.
Aberdeen never got fully motoring in attack whilst Hibs showed their individual talent when it was needed, which made all the difference in Leith.