Failure to beat Dunfermline the week after the Hearts game was really the final straw for Hibs. Even a creditable draw with Celtic, still short of blocking Rangers’ ten in a row, was no good as first Dunfermline and then Aberdeen both won crucial games to take them out of reach. Dundee United themselves had been sucked into the relegation battle and defeat here would have left them facing Rangers to guarantee survival. Continue reading
Cynics would observe that Hibs were only two points off the bottom of the Premier League at this point, having scored a measly 9 goals in 17 matches. Mind you, having said that we were only three points behind Celtic in 5th place who lost 2-1 at home to Dunfermline on this day.
Nevertheless it is interesting to note that it took over ten years for ‘the split’ to become reality. Also interesting is the comment that attendances were in decline because spectators have less cash to spend on activities such as football. Has it also taken more than ten years for the powers that be to realise this fact as well?
I came up from Cambridge to go to this game. It was the weekend that Scotland and England squared up to each other at Murrayfield to contest the rugby Grand Slam. My mother had a ticket for Murrayfield and offered it to me, as she didn’t really want to go. I, however, opted for Tannadice and the chance to see Hibs march on to Scottish Cup glory…
So much for Scottish Cup glory…
The DJ at Tannadice entertained us all at half-time with the latest hits from the Angus Strathspey and Reel Society chart rather than the more usual pop Top 20. And I thought it was just the Dons who were into sheep.
Apart from goalscorer Darren Jackson, there was another future Hibee in the Arab ranks, whom Oor Wullie seemed keen to get intimate with…
Just about the biggest cheer of the afternoon was for the announcement midway through the second half of the result from Murrayfield. Those interested in egg-chasing can re-live a little of that moment below.
Ooh, Will, butterfingers old chap.
Clearly the tedium was such that the rest of the report wasn’t worth keeping either.
Memory fails me when it comes to the details of this game. This is probably because it took place on the same day that the Grand National was postponed due to an IRA bomb scare at Aintree. I had to queue up for an age at a bookie’s on Easter Road to get my stake back, since I was returning to Cambridge the next day. If I’d let the bet ride for when the race was finally run on the Monday I would have had about £50 to collect on my next trip north. Story of my life.
Anyway, history records that Hibs won this match 2-0 thanks to a Chic Charnley penalty after 73 minutes, the concession of which also led to Steven Pressley being ordered off. Pat McGinlay secured the points five minutes later. With Motherwell only drawing at Pittodrie Hibs were five points clear of the dreaded play-off spot. Unfortunately the results were reversed the following weekend and when Motherwell won improbably at Ibrox on the second last day of the season while Hibs went down to Celtic the teams were tied on points with Motherwell crucially ahead on goal difference. A nervous final Saturday lay in store.
London Hibbies might like to scrutinise the photo below and see if they can name the three members to Phil Larner’s right, snapped while celebrating Phil’s 50th birthday (and a 2-1 Hibs win at Aberdeen) in the Forthview restaurant at Easter Road. Leave a comment if you recognise anyone.