Hibs manager Paul Heckingbottom reckons the fans deserve the club’s progression to the League Cup semi-final.
After a turgid 120 minutes of football, Kilmarnock and Hibs went to penalties following a goaless stalemate.
Heckingbottom’s men didn’t bottle it and instead held on for a 5-4 spot kick victory, setting them up for a tie with Celtic at Hampden.
The Hibees boss believes it’s no less than the fans deserve.
He told the Daily Record (page 60, 26/09/19): “It is never easy when you go behind in a shoot-out but we found a way through it. It means a lot because if it goes the other way after putting all that effort in then your are totally sick.
“We managed to held our nerve. People always question you and there’s only one way to answer.
“I’m just pleased that the players have got their rewards, the fans have got their rewards and there’s been a battling performance because that’s the question that’s been put to the team. We understand that and it’s fully justified.”
Hibs need to improve for upcoming Celtic clash
After this result, Heckingbottom has said that Hibs have now ‘turned a corner’ (BBC). While some fans might not go to that extent, it can’t be denied how important this result is.
It lifts the pressure on the Easter Road manager slightly. After Sunday’s woeful Edinburgh derby display, some fans wanted the Englishman out and many will still be unconvinced he is the man to take the club forward.
They need to improve upon their Rugby Park positive now. During the 120 minutes, they didn’t create many clear cut chances and were lucky not to lose the game, with Stephen O’Donnell missing a big chance at the backpost as the minutes ticked down.
Performance levels in front of goal didn’t drastically improve, with Killie still registering six more shots than Hibs (BBC). A big positive though was a clean sheet, their first in six games.
Overall there are good positives to take from the Ayrshire battle, but plenty of things to work on ahead of Celtic’s visit to Leith.