Hibs were looking to make it 10 East of Scotland shield victories in a row over their Edinburgh derby rivals Hearts, and did so thanks to Jordan McGregor’s bullet header just before half time, and Oliver Shaw’s looping header 10 minutes from time. Hearts looked the more likely team to score throughout the match, but couldn’t find that killer touch.
The first 10 minutes of the game began with neither team creating any real opportunities and neither Goalkeeper having any touch of the ball. Both teams were trying to play football on the big pitch at Easter Road, and this almost cost Hearts a goal. A free kick inside their own half was played short by Sean McKirdy to Kai Wilson, and the big defender was robbed by Conner Duthie who raced through on goal, but dragged his shot wide of Jamie Sneddon’s left post.
Hearts’ first real attack of the game came when Murray Cockburn drove down the right hand side, played the ball inside to Rhys Craigie, who then slipped the ball wide to Ian Smith, who drilled his shot across goal but Brennan in the Hibs goal stood firm to push the ball wide for a corner.
From the resulting corner, Hearts almost took the lead. A McKirdy corner was placed on the head of Murray Cockburn, who headed towards the bottom corner but Matthew McInally was on the post to block the ball and clear it to safety. The full back in the right place at the right time, with keeper Sean Brennan helpless.
Aaron Scott was proving a real handful going forward for Hibs to deal with. The midfield maestro found himself some space 18 yards from goal, striking the ball with some power and the ball looked destined to nestle in the top corner, but Jordan McGregor threw himself in front of the shot to divert it for a corner. The resulting corner headed over the ball by Wilson.
Good work down the left hand side from Sam Daniels released Rhys Craigie, who fed strike partner Cockburn in the middle. He gave McGregor the slip, but his shot sailed over the bar. Hearts looking more and more likely to break the deadlock.
Hearts came even closer to taking the lead, as they rattled the crossbar. Scott picked the ball up 20 yards from goal, he shifted the ball onto his stronger right foot, and unleashed a venomous striker which smashed the face of the bar past the despairing dive of Brennan. Scott so unlucky with his shot.
Almost immediately after, Hibs took the lead. A corner from dead ball specialist Scott Martin was met by the head of Jordan McGregor, unmarked, 6 yards out to bullet his header past Sneddon to give Hibs a 1-0 advantage 2 minutes before half time. Not many chances at all for Hibs, but they took this one to go into half time with a lead.