Covid crisis didn't fuel Hibs, says Kevin Nisbet, who insists players had their own incentives

Hibs were well aware of the need to stop the rot after three defeats on the bounce.

Kevin Nisbet scores to secure Hibs the draw in their league match against Celtic. Photo by Ross MacDonald / SNS Group
Kevin Nisbet scores to secure Hibs the draw in their league match against Celtic. Photo by Ross MacDonald / SNS Group

After delivering the goal that earned them a point against Celtic on Monday night, Kevin Nisbet believes the Easter Road side deserve credit for stepping up despite the chaos caused by Celtic’s coronavirus crisis.

He also hopes that adding to his score tally on such a big stage will enhance his international hopes, with Scotland boss Steve Clarke currently pondering his squad for the World Cup qualifiers against Austria, Israel and Faroe Islands, in March.

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“You need to turn things around as quickly as possible and to get a point after a few defeats was great for us. I thought the lads were brilliant. They stepped up and could’ve actually won it,” said the 23-year-old, whose stoppage time goal cancelled out David Turnbull’s goal to ensure a share of the spoils and, he hopes will enhance the chances of a Scotland call-up.

“It won’t do me any harm. But it’s up to me to keep on performing, keep scoring goals and keep staying in the thoughts of Steve Clarke.”

But Nisbet refuted suggestions that Celtic’s unwillingness to allay Hibs’ health concerns by undergoing further Covid testing on the day of the game proved an incentive to the Easter Road side.

“I think we have to be motivated for any game we play, regardless of the opposition, regardless of the situation.

“It’s one of those ones where you just need to get on with it. I think, if the boys had said ‘we don’t want to play’ the club would’ve understood that. But we came and played and took home a point.

“They had a few players out, but I think if you look at their team they still had good players out there.

“A lot of money’s been spent on that team so I don’t think it was added pressure for us. We just had to focus on ourselves and our game-plan.

“I thought we stuck to it well and it took a set-piece to take us down. All in all I thought it was a good performance.”

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