Hibernian in crisis ahead of Celtic clash

By Hamish Carton

September 23, 2019

Celtic may be preparing to play Hibernian at just the right time – with the Easter Road seemingly in a bit of a crisis.

Manager Paul Heckingbottom is under extreme pressure in the capital after the weekend defeat to rivals Hearts. In total, the Leith side have taken just one point from their last five league matches and sit second bottom in the table.

In that time they’ve scored four goals and conceded 15, and with Neil Lennon’s Champions in town on Saturday, things may be about to get a whole lot worse.

“I know what I want to do, I know what I’ve got to do, but that’s for other people to talk about,” Heckingbottom told the BBC.

(Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

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“We’re playing three teams who finished above us last year. Three teams who we’re chasing and want to compete with. So these are three big, big games for us.

“Nothing will come easy. But why not take on this challenge? Why not take on the best? If you’re going to turn it around, that’s the best way to do it.”

Heckingbottom was referring to the upcoming games his side have against Kilmarnock, Celtic and Aberdeen – but will he even be in charge for those matches?

(Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

Hibernian could still be tough opposition for Celtic

We’ll know more by the end of Monday on whether Heckingbottom will live to fight another day. If he is to be relieved of his duties then you would assume it would happen early in the week, especially with such big games to come.

If he is kept on then we must be wary of going up against a wounded animal on Saturday. Easter Road is never an easy place to go and we’ve found that out to our cost in recent seasons. We’ve won just one of our last seven league matches at the stadium – although we did net a further victory in a Scottish Cup tie last season.

(Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

But Heckingbottom is likely to be fighting tooth and nail to salvage his career this coming week. That brings about a totally new type of challenge, and it’s one we must be well prepared for.