S Prem Hib v Abe CA06022021 28
Sat 06 Feb 2021
SPFL Premiership
HT 1-0
Hibernian Hibernian FC
2
Aberdeen Aberdeen FC
0
Boyle (pen.) (
27')
Boyle (
67')
Match Report

A Martin Boyle brace saw Hibernian deservedly claim full points from their potentially crucial contest with Aberdeen.

Jack Ross kept faith with the same starting XI won their previous two outings.

Hibernian had a fantastic early opportunity to find a breakthrough when Greg Leigh was woefully short with a pass-back and put Chris Cadden clean through.

The winger, however, hesitated just long enough for Lewis to close the gap and make a terrific block to keep his side level.

Aberdeen’s Leigh injured himself in the process of playing the pass-back to Lewis and he was quickly replaced by Connor Maclennan.

In the 10th minute, Lewis Ferguson found Ross McCrorie on the edge of the Hibs box and the former Rangers man let fly with a rasping drive that Ofir Marciano did well to beat away before Darren McGregor blocked the follow-up to prevent Fraser Hornby from scoring on the rebound.

Maclennan should have at the very least tested Marciano when Matty Kennedy found him unmarked in the Hibs box, only for the substitute to completely miss the ball and the chance was gone.

Having weathered the visitors’ best spell of the game, Hibs went about creating opportunities of their own and could have gone ahead when Jackson Irvine threaded a fine ball through the middle that saw Boyle in on Lewis, only for the goalkeeper to, once again, make a crucial stop.

Sixty second later Boyle had another opportunity, this time from the penalty spot after McLennan had fouled Jamie Murphy, and he finished with aplomb by lashing a powerful shot low to the keeper’s right to score his eighth of the campaign.

Despite not saving the spot-kick, Aberdeen keeper Lewis was keeping his side in it at times. He again came to their rescue when Cadden robbed Dylan McGeouch in midfield, before finding Christian Doidge, who flicked it around the corner to Boyle and he was denied from another one-one-one situation by Lewis.

from @HibernianFC

After the break Hibs continued to look the likelier to score next and in the opening seconds almost added to their lead when Irvine played a wonderful dink over the Dons defence to find the run of Doidge, only for the striker to take a heavy touch on his chest and Lewis to bravely save at his feet.

Youngster Josh Doig was next to have a go with an ambitious effort from distance that was not far away.

Ross shuffled the pack on 66 minutes, introducing Kyle Magennis and Lewis Stevenson for Irvine and Doig, respectively.

Stevenson would make an instant impact when, just seconds after coming on, he threaded a terrific ball through for Boyle and the Aberdonian finished clinically with a clever finish through the legs of Lewis for his second of the afternoon and ninth of the campaign.

Aberdeen nearly got back into the game with 11 minutes remaining when Kennedy’s cross from the left found the head of Hornby and a nick off Paul Hanlon’s shoulder took the ball over Marciano and onto the crossbar, with Stevenson hooking clear the rebound.

In the end, Hibernian comfortably saw out the remainder of the match to move five points clear of Derek McInnes’ men.

Image: Cameron Allan.

Report: Richard Payne.