Report: Livingston 1 Hibs 1

Report: Livingston 1 Hibs 1

19-May-2024 16:41:20 | Hibernian FC Official Website

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The curtain came down on the 2023/24 campaign this afternoon with a 1-1 draw against Livingston in West Lothian.

Myziane Maolida’s 11th goal of the season put us ahead early in the second half before Bruce Anderson levelled for the hosts.

In a game devoid of any significant quality, both teams went through the motions during 90 minutes that included limited goal scoring opportunities.

Skipper Paul Hanlon led us out for one final time this afternoon at the Tony Macaronia Arena as Interim Head Coach David Gray made one change from the midweek win over Motherwell.

Jordan Obita returned at left back with veteran Lewis Stevenson dropping to the bench.

 

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The match started in tepid fashion with neither side willing to take the game by the scruff of the neck and seize control.

One of the hosts’ biggest strengths is their ability from set pieces and in the 12th minute they almost showed why as Jermain Nottingham’s header following a corner kick appeared to be sneaking in at the back post only for Jojo Wollacott to make a terrific save and push it away with a strong right hand.

For a long time that was the only action of note as the game played out in a typical end-of-the-season fare.

We were struggling to get Myziane and Martin Boyle into the game and we were not moving the ball around quickly enough which allowed Livingston to maintain their rigid defensive shape.

That said, we would finish the first half strongly by peppering the Livingston goal with efforts in the final 15 minutes.

Nectarios Triantis came within a whisker of breaking the deadlock when he pounced on the ball, played a one-two with Joe Newell and firing a low shot goalward that took the merest of deflections to take it just past Shamal George’s near post.

Then, Josh Campbell had the Livi goalkeeper scrambling across his goal as he went close with a 30-yard strike before Newell had an effort pushed away at full stretch by George.

In the final incident of note from the first half, Myziane cut inside off the left and let fly with a right foot shot that was deflected wide as the Livi defence once more put their bodies on the line.

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We continued in the same manner when play resumed after the break and it took just three minutes before we broke the deadlock.

A long throw from Newell meant for Triantis was diverted into the path of Myziane; with three Livi defenders around him he showed great control to bring the ball down before he beat George with a left foot strike that took a nick off Nottingham enroute.

Livingston would suffer another blow soon after as goalkeeper George picked up a knock and was unable to continue, eventually being replaced by Kieran Wright.

We had an opportunity to double our advantage when Chris Cadden’s cross from the right was only partially cleared by Michael Devlin and fell to Campbell who volleyed over.

The game entered something of a lull thereafter with many going through the motions and the game threatening to peter out.

 

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We would pay for taking our foot off the gas as Livingston levelled when Joel Nouble’s pinpoint cross found Anderson unmarked and he swept it beyond Wollacott from close range.

Our response was to replace Dylan Vente with Adam Le Fondre and the substitute had an early chance only for his shot on the turn to flash over the crossbar.

With 14 minutes remaining Newell forced Wright into a save as he drove inside off the right flank and let fly with a rising effort the goalkeeper acrobatically claimed.

With six minutes remaining Anderson raced through and slotted the ball past Wollacott only for the offside flag to thankfully curb his celebrations.

Skipper Hanlon pulled up in the aftermath of that move and he would be replaced by Jair for the closing moments, as Triantis dropped back to fill in the defensive void.

We had opportunities to snatch victory at the death with Campbell having a shot deflected wide and Le Fondre heading over from a Jair cross, however it would end all-square.

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