Hibs Are Not Out Of Europe Yet, And Celtic Fans Should Pray They Don’t Exit This Early.

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Last night, Hibs suffered an epochal European football humiliation when they were beaten 2-1 in the Europa League Qualifiers by a team from Andorra.

It is not the worst result in Scottish football history; that still belongs to the Ibrox club and Progres knocking them out, and there is every chance that Hibs could do what Celtic did when we were scandalously beaten by Gibraltar’s Lincoln Red Imps, but the result is an embarrassment on that level.

If they go out to a team like that it is a flat-out disgrace for which their manager richly deserves to be sacked. And we, as a club, should be hoping that this does not come to pass.

Every one of these humiliations reflects badly on our game. Clubs like Hibs need to improve, and that means they need the income these competitions provide … it is a disaster for them if they go out, but it’s also a disaster for the rest of us.

Let me clarify; this is not about the co-efficient. I hope that the club from Ibrox gets knocked out of the Champions League. If they were playing tiddlywinks, I’d want them to get beat.

Their losing games at that level, or us losing games at that level, reflect mostly on our clubs … it does not cast a dark shadow over the whole of our game in the way that something like this would.

Results like that one last night shame our national sport. There is a long and depressing list of them; it seems that every single year at least one of our clubs disgraces the national sport with an appalling European reversal. This would be one for the ages though.

I sincerely hope it doesn’t happen. I want to see Scottish clubs play Group Stage football, to strengthen them and our league. That’s why every Celtic fan should be concerned by that result last night and consider it a calamity if Hibs go out like this.

For their club, this is not just an isolated bad result.

They have been dreadful under Lee Johnston; I could not believe the cynicism and the negativity of their tactics when they came to Parkhead last season in the league.

He is one of a number of shocking, unambitious appoints made by Scottish clubs in the last few years and I worry that Steven Naismith and Barry Robson, two interim bosses given the jobs at Aberdeen and Hearts on very little evidence, are going to further take the league backwards.

For Johnson, next week is critical. If he loses it then he’s undoubtedly finished, and though I would not mourn him – and few Hibs fans would – it’s too disastrous an outcome to hope for just to rid our game of his dreadful style of football.

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