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Away to hibs 26/10/19
Could have done with this being a home game after yesterday's pumping, but never mind, hopefully the players will get over it and move on quickly enough to realise how important this game is with rangers to follow.
Reasonably confident of a point or 3 as hibs haven't been great so hopefully the team is set up to really go for it, would like to see power given his chance, his speed is a real asset and will cause panic in defences, about time the management saw fit to use him.
We need to tighten up on our wings as wing backs and fullbacks were nowhere to be seen last sat against tics
A lot of the hibs play seems to be based on wing play
Maybe it was just a bad day at the office last sat
Need to be a lot better.

Hard to see points coming our way as I fear Hibs will start to turn their obvious potential into winning form again.
FergnKetts - BestBossYets
Should be a decent game, hibs have been dominating Hanes but failing to score, as long as our defence cuts out silly errors I’d be confident in taking points. Would like to see Watson and Grivo start this one. Sounds like a few folk are heading to it as well, would be good to get a strong support behind the boys for the game
First up, Hibs obviously are and always will be a much bigger club than Ross
County. No one would ever dispute that.

The question is can the County players show the character and belief to bounce back from the heaviest ever league defeat that any Ross County team has suffered in any Scottish league game, when six goals were shipped against Celtic last week ?

I believe they can and there is absolutely no reason for County not to go into the game feeling confident.

Hibs are on an absolute dire run of form, sitting 2nd. bottom in the Premiership, having only won one league game this season - a very late single goal victory against St. Mirren at the start of August. Indeed, that has been their only win in their last 14 keague games - that poor run stretching back to April this year.

County have a pretty good head to head record against Hibs. With both sides enjoying four wins apiece in the ten league games that have been played to date.

There is a tendency for the Hibs support to turn on their team quickly if things aren't going their way early doors. The net effect of which can make their players nervous about making mistakes and devoid of confidence.

The current County players have more than enough experience and talent to rise to the occasion and get something from the game. Coming away with a point would be good.

However, given all of these factors-and if the County players combine their experience and playing capabilities with the required mental strength-there is no reason why Ross County cannot come away with all three points.

Bit of a strange team selection, seems very defensive with both foster and Kelly playing, someone's going to be playing out of position, no Ross stewart?? And once again power doesn't even make the squad, that's the one I really can't get my head around, he'll end up leaving having never started a game for us.
I see Jason Naismith is lining up against us today, probably the best right back we've ever had, maybe that explains foster and Kelly both playing.
Will absolutely take the point after being two down!
Quote:God bless the Stag Men and Children.
Cracking result away from home
We've got great character in our squad.
We need to tighten up at the back and become a lot harder to beat though.
No amount of character is going to get us back into the game if we keep giving teams easy goals!
Not meaning to be over critical after a fantastic comeback from the lads, but the way Hibs are at the moment we didn't sound like we were pressing enough and putting them under pressure, which they can't handle at the moment. We did it in the last 20mins and could have won the game. My point is why did we wait till we were 2 down before getting our finger out.
I wasn't at the game so I'd be interested to hear from the supporters who were there on this point.
Was at the game today with Applecross staggie. Strange selection today with no real width to our team. Very even first half with not a lot to get excited about. Need to see the goals again for Hibs but thought Draper at fault for the 2 nd goal. Felt the worst after that but what a difference when big Brian Graham came on & scored. He never let's us down although he should have buried his 2 chance just after he scored. He offers so much more than an out of sorts Billy mckay. We could have won that game today but would have settled for a point before the game. Really need to be at it before we go behind though. Good noisy support for the team which was good to hear. Mon the staggies.
Born a highlander always a highlander.Smile
Lots of character shown by the County players today to overturn a 2-0 deficit and score twice in the last 15 minutes to snatch a point. In fact, it could have been all three, had Steven McLean awarded a penalty to County two minutes into added time when home defender Porteous clearly impeded Billy McKay eight yards out as both went for the same ball. The latter was pushed over. It happened right in front of the County support in the South stand. Despite that incident, the equaliser in the 90th. minute actually felt like a County win. By contrast, those that remained in the gutted Hibs support, loudly booed their players off the park at the full-time whistle. They have seen the same horror movie many times this year.

There was two turning points in the game.

Firstly, Hibs sole striker Kamberi squandered a great chance to put Hibs 3-0 up midway through the 2nd. half. With the empty goal at his mercy, his shot was deflected onto the outside of the post when it looked easier to score. Had that gone in it surely would have been game over.

Secondly, the County co-managers made the right substitutions at the right time which totally changed the pattern of the game in County's favour. Brian Graham was brought on for Euan Henderson in the 64th. minute as County switched to a more attack minded 4-4-2. That change also brought much needed physicality to the County goal threat and eased the pressure on Billy McKay who had a thankless task chasing lost causes on his own up front. It was complemented with a double midfield change 8 minutes later when Mullin and Chalmers were brought on for the tiring Foster and Spence. If Hibs had done their homework, they would have known that the same tactical changes in shape and formation- at the same stage of the game- resulted in two late County goals against Motherwell to secure all three points a few weeks back.

The fresh midfield legs and tactical change up front resulted in County pinning Hibs back in the last quarter and stretching the game by using the full width of the pitch to good effect, whilst retaining possession and creating lots of space.

Graham scored the first on 75 minutes with a clever, curling shot on the turn from 14 yards out having received the ball with his back to goal. The ball ending up just inside the right -hand post.

Sixty seconds later the same player somehow headed wide from eight yards out -and in loads of space -connecting with a Kelly cross from the left, when it looked easier to score.

With five minutes left Graham turned provider when he slipped a through ball to McKay who narrowly failed to connect, from eight yards out.

The equaliser came in the last minute of regulation time when Chalmers low, pacy, shot whizzed into the net just inside the right hand post, when it initially looked to be going wide. There was no deflection. It was a clean strike with a bit of swerve that gave home keeper Maxwell absolutely no chance.

Apart from both Hibs goals - and tho open goal spurned by Kamberi - the home side didn't create any other chances of note during the second half. Their introduction of Horgan, at the start of that period, introduced added attacking pace down the right. The Irishman opened the scoring five minutes after the restart when he latched onto a Naismith ball down the right, drove into the right side of the box at speed unchallenged, before lashing the ball low and hard into the opposite side of the net.

Scott Allan scored their second, seven minutes later when he capitalised on Ross Draper losing possession on the Hibs left, cut inside (again unchallenged) and blasted the ball into the left side of the net from 25 yards out.

Both teams had cancelled each other out during the first half, with each playing a precautionary 4-5-1 formation. Understandable perhaps from a County point of view, given the goals they shipped against Celtic last week. Whilst many in the Hibs support have been calling for a more attack minded two up front for weeks, to no avail.

It was an unusual use of County starting personnel in that Richard Foster was pushed forward in front of Marcus Fraser in an unfamiliar right midfield role with Michael Gardyne being switched to the opposite flank, and Bily McKay plowing a lone furrow up front. Foster played well in that role.

That formation didn't really work, as evidenced by County's only effort on target in the first-half being a pacy Fraser shot from 25 yards out, ten minutes before the break,which proved to be a comfortable save for Maxwell. That was preceded by a Gardyne shot from the edge of the box mid-way through the half, which went wide of the left post. Outwith that, County had no other attempts on goal

Hibs created more during the first-half with : a curling Hallberg free kick that bounced off the top of the upright in the fifth minute; ex-County favourite Jason Naismith blazing a difficult angled chance at the back-post over the bar in the nineteenth minute and Ross Laidlaw pulling off a great save from a Kamberi close-range shot, on the half- hour mark from an almost identical position to Naismith. Outwith that, Laidlaw had two comfortable takes from separate Mallan shots that lacked any real power.

In answer to your question Jamie, I think County showed too much respect to Hibs in the first half, in a game where two County strikers could have caused problems against a slow, plodding, home team that clearly lacked confidence. However, we could see why the co-managers did not opt to do so from the start - or go all out with a more risky high pressing game - given the drubbing by Celtic the week before. They played off Hibs and achieved the first part of their mission by getting to the break by not conceding and also did get their tactics spot on later on in the game.

Both teams cancelled each other out during the first half with each showing slow build up play across the midfield five, keeping the ball on the deck and playing a cautious, passing game which went back for both teams as often as forward.

However on the positive side, no County player had a bad game and all played their part.

In the last twenty minutes the desire, urgency, possession, passing, movement, shape, pressing, use of the full width of the pitch and energy were the best I have seen in a very long time from any County side. Hibs just couldn't cope as they were totally pinned back for the first time in the game. If County can reach those sort of levels more consistently, a top six finish might be achievable again this season.

Well done lads.....
Thanks for your assessment Fyrish.
Pretty much what I was thinking.
I think our players need to believe in themselves more in some games. I understand that would have been difficult on the back of such a heavy defeat though!
Cracking report as usual Fryish, appreciated. Gutted I couldn't make the game yesterday, love an Easter Road away day.
Quote:God bless the Stag Men and Children.
Much appreciated, Fyrish
FergnKetts - BestBossYets

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