Hibs are on the brink of an astonishingly creative, and potentially brilliant, management choice in the run up to the cup final. But bizarrely, they will not have the new man at the helm before the game.
That seems like a tremendous missed opportunity to me.
Shaun Maloney is an excellent managerial choice.
He is rated highly in the upper echelons of the game.
He’s learned his trade at the side of a genuine master, a man who would have been a good candidate for our own club. Maloney was, in fact, tipped to join the coaching team at Celtic more than once; it is a great shame he never did.
I would have been genuinely nervous facing a Maloney run team at the weekend. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not knocking David Gray and the assistant coaches he has with him, but Maloney is an innovator.
Even at short notice, he could have raised their level.
It’s as if Hibs learned nothing from facing the Ibrox club at Hampden when they were in the midst of a transition. A new manager settles a club and can give it a temporary boost.
A temporary coaching team, who know the new boss in the stands … not so much.
This is a lift for us, and we need one with the injury issues we continue to have. Who’s going to be fit for the final? We still don’t know. But I feel a bit better knowing we’re not going to face a Hibs whose team are being run by a permanent coach.
It guarantees nothing, of course but it does change the dynamic somewhat, and I think it changes it in our favour. If we now go into the game and we have Kyogo and others available, the psychological effect of that alone might take us to the trophy.
Before that, though, we have tonight’s game to contend with.
I’ll post something when we get the line-up.