Josh O Connor vs Aberdeen

O’Connor Bags Hat-Trick In U18 Friendly

Hibs Under-18s defeated Spartans Under-20s 6-1 in a friendly match at the Hibernian Training Centre on Monday night.

The bounce game, organised after the wee Hibees’ trip to face their Dundee United counterparts last Friday was postponed, gave the Capital club a chance to run the rule over several trialists, with three in the starting line-up and another brought on as a half-time sub.

Hibs opened the scoring with just 90 seconds on the clock, Josh O’Connor finishing past the visiting ‘keeper after a smart through-ball.

Connor Young then sent a powerful header narrowly over as the hosts threatened to go two up inside the first ten minutes.

After a quarter of an hour O’Connor saw another shot saved with Murray Aiken winning a corner from his follow-up effort. From the resulting set-piece O’Connor scored his and Hibs’ second with a powerful shot from inside the area.

Young then sent a free kick narrowly over and Oscar MacIntyre tested the Spartans ‘keeper with a fierce drive from range.

Hibs continued to press for more goals but were unable to add to their tally before the break, with Freddie Wylie going close with an audacious chip that the 'keeper just managed to touch over.

Ethan Laidlaw made it three with a tap-in from close range early in the second period and half-time substitute Rudi Molotnikov was unlucky to see an effort come back off the bar.

Hibs were awarded a penalty with around 20 minutes remaining and although O’Connor hit the bar with his first effort, the assistant referee signalled an infringement and O’Connor converted at the second attempt.

Spartans then pulled one back from close range before a Mack Weir header and another penalty, this time from Laidlaw, put a gloss on the scoreline with Spartans hitting the post in the closing minutes.

Hibs: Murray Johnson (Josh Blair 45), Trialist A (Mack Weir 69), Jack Brydon, Trialist B (Kanayo Megwa 57), Oscar MacIntyre (Owen Hastie 74), Murray Aiken (Josh McCulloch 66), Freddie Wylie (Jacob MacIntyre 74), Trialist C (Rudi Molotnikov 45), Ethan Laidlaw, Josh O'Connor (Ben Reilly 74), Connor Young (Trialist D 45).

By Patrick McPartlin at Edinburgh Evening News.

Photo: Maurice Dougan