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Jack Ross heaps praise on Hibs’ substitutes following late win

Heart of Midlothian v Hibernian – cinch Premiership – Tynecastle Park
(Image credit: Jeff Holmes)

Hibernian head coach Jack Ross felt the contribution of his substitutes in their late comeback win against St Johnstone showed how valued all of his players are.

Jamie Murphy returned from injury off the bench to set up Kevin Nisbet’s 83rd-minute equaliser before netting himself following a sublime pass from fellow sub Scott Allan, who was also involved in the first Hibs goal.

The 2-1 victory ended a five-match losing run in the cinch Premiership for Hibs, who benefited from Craig Bryson’s red card in first-half stoppage-time, five minutes after Liam Gordon had headed in off Ryan Porteous.

Ross said: “The manner of the second half, we had the man advantage and were so dominant, it was tailor-made for Jamie Murphy and Scott Allan because they have that quality in the final third and we had so much of the ball in there.

“Jamie kept putting himself in good areas and I was really happy for him because you could see how much it meant to him. He is determined to do well here and he does love his football. It’s been a frustrating period for him but he had a big impact.”

Allan produced a superb touch early on in the move which saw Hibs break forward to score the winner. He then turned a man and picked out Murphy in a crowded penalty box.

“That’s what Scott provides, whether it’s starting games or off the bench,” Ross said. “I think he knows in the right circumstances he will always be part of what we do here.

“The great thing overall for the substitutes’ impact on the game shows how we treat them and how they feel involved.

“It was tailor-made for Scott but he has got to go and do it on the pitch, and he did that, not just in that moment but other moments. Him and Jamie were involved in Kevin’s goal as well. The goals were real high quality regardless of whether it was against 11 men or 10.”

St Johnstone manager Callum Davidson was left to bemoan Bryson’s actions after the 35-year-old midfielder picked up two of the most obvious yellow cards of the season.

Davidson told Saints TV: “That’s two games against them and they have got a penalty that never was and we got a man sent off. We have basically given them the points rather than them taking them off us.

“I wouldn’t mind if Hibs outplayed us and created loads of chances when it was 11 against 11, I would accept that. But that was a tough one to take.

“Fortunately there are games coming thick and fast at the moment. I will just make sure the lads know they have got to be better. We have to get some points from the next two games.”

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