Scout Report | Can Killie claim first home win against Hibs?

Scout Report | Can Killie claim first home win against Hibs?

in #KillieStories October 31, 2017

It’s Steve Clarke first home game as Kilmarnock manager as we welcome Hibernian to Rugby Park.

After collecting five points from three away trips to Glasgow, the new boss wants to feel the noise from the home stands.

Hibernian head to Ayrshire in buoyant mood on the back of two straight league victories.

Simon Murray’s goal earned an Edinburgh derby triumph over city rivals Hearts while another single goal saw Hibs defeat League Cup finalists Motherwell at Fir Park.

Hibs are yet to lose away from home in the Premiership, recording three wins and three draws from six matches so far.

Hibernian have enjoyed 88 victories to Kilmarnock’s 68 on league duty.

In our last meeting in May 2014, Kris Boyd’s goal at Easter Road was enough to condemn the Easter Road side to the play-offs which led to their relegation from the top flight.

Our last clash at Rugby Park ended 1-1 with Rory McKenzie opening the scoring before Danny Haynes equalised.

After winning promotion to the Scottish Premiership, Neil Lennon set out his ambitions to finish best of the rest and his summer recruitment followed this path.

Scotland international Steven Whittaker rejoined the club from Norwich while Anthony Stokes was lured back to Leith for a third spell in green and white.

Established Premiership performers Efe Ambrose and Danny Swanson have also been recruited alongside Lithuanian duo Vykintas Slivka and Deivydas Matulevicius.

Simon Murray has stepped up following his summer move from Dundee United.

While sticking with a back four, Neil Lennon has adopted a flexible approach to his midfield and attacking options throughout this season.

Hibs have employed a 4-4-2 formation, 4-4-1-1 as well as 4-3-3 in the league this term with the Hibs head coach utilising his strength in depth.

On-loan winger Brandon Barker joins Martin Boyle in bringing pure speed to the Hibs attack while John McGinn and Marvin Bartley add steel and skill to the centre of the park.

Dylan McGeouch and Vykintas Slivka add flair to supply chances for strikers Murray and Stokes with full-backs David Gray and Lewis Stevenson encouraged to drive forward down the flanks.

Neil Lennon said: “Kilmarnock are on the back of two away draws in Glasgow, which is pretty special. They’ve got an excellent manager in Steve Clarke so it shows you the calibre of manager we’re getting in Scotland.

“They’ve had a lift with the new manager coming in and they’ve had two fantastic results so that will breed confidence. They are playing with belief and they’ve got some talent. Every game in this league is difficult and we won’t be over confident but quietly confident.”

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