Hibernian v St. Johnstone, Sunday 15th May 2022, 12 noon.

I didn’t have much planned for this day and when I saw that there were a couple of games going on in Edinburgh that I could attend I thought I’d have a drive up. The first match was a lunchtime kick-off at Easter Road for the final game in the Premier League for Hibs and St. Johnstone.

I’d bought a ticket online for a central position in the East Stand for twenty-eight quid. The streets around were designated for disabled matchday parking but I was able to find somewhere around ten minute’s walk away.

I’d stopped for a bacon sandwich on the way up so settled for a pre-match coffee. The food options were varied and if I’d wanted, I could have had a macaroni pie followed by a doughnut.

Prior to kick-off there was a tribute on the big screens to the Hibs fans and former players who had died over the course of the season. There must have been a hundred of them and living in Leith struck me as being riskier than spending time in Midsomer. Maybe it’s the macaroni pie and doughnut diet.

When the line-ups were announced I realised that St. Johnstone were fielding an ex-Boro player, Jacob Butterfield. He only played the one season for us. Mogga signed him then got bagged a month or so later and Karanka swapped him for Adam Clayton the following summer. I was away in South Africa for most of that campaign but saw a couple of his early games for us. I can remember elements of both matches but nothing at all about Mr. Butterfield.

He did ok in this game, sitting deep and playing mainly short passes. The very definition of tidy, I suppose.

There wasn’t anything at stake in this game and I got the impression that a lot of Hibs fans had just taken the day off. Those that had turned up made it a priority to say their seasonal goodbyes to those around them and to look forward to seeing them again in August.

I was transfixed by a bloke a couple of rows down from me with an elaborate comb-over. It was aimed at disguising the bald spot on his crown and included a parting halfway down the back of his head with hair swept upwards. He played safe by brushing his fringe backwards for double coverage. It’s a style that requires assistance and he had used enough hairspray for it to resemble a Coco Coir doormat.

Hibs were the better side and ran out four-nil winners with man of the match James Scott getting three of them. It wasn’t as one sided as the score would suggest though with St. Johnstone having plenty of opportunities and more of the ball. The contest wasn’t really over until Hibs got their third just after the hour.

As the game petered out Hibs emptied their bench and gave debuts to what seemed like most of their Academy. It’s not easy to tell whether young players will go on to have a decent career but if it doesn’t pan out for them at this level, they will have had an enjoyable few minutes in a first team shirt to look back on.

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