Lee Johnson warns Hibernian about Aberdeen backlash before Easter Road clash
It follows the Dons exit from the Scottish Cup earlier in the week
Hibernian boss Lee Johnson is wary of an Aberdeen backlash when the Dons visit Easter Road on Saturday.
Manager Jim Goodwin is under huge pressure after the Pittodrie men’s shock 1-0 defeat away to Junior side Darvel in the Scottish Cup on Monday night.
The Irishman was given a reprieve by the Dons board with the caveat that “an immediate response from him and the players” was expected.
Hibs are in sixth place, two points behind Aberdeen, and Johnson – under enough scrutiny himself after two 3-0 defeats by Edinburgh rivals Hearts this month – said: “Our warning if you like is you would expect a reaction.
“I’ve played in those games, they are difficult, they are not easy.
“They (Darvel) are much better than their league with the money they have put into their squad and you pepper the goal and you don’t finish.
“It happens, it is football, it’s why we love it. It happens down in England all the time. I have been a part of massive cup upsests.
“So it is a new game, anything in the past is gone and we have to focus on Hibernian.”
Johnson backed Goodwin to come through a testing period at the Pittodrie club.
He said: “I always have empathy for managers. Everyone is facing their own challenges and hurdles.
“As we all do, managers naturally get the finger pointed at them which is why some people can’t cope when they are thrust into management because they can’t cope with that.
“Jim is big enough and ugly enough, as we all are, to cope with anything that is thrown at him. But my focus is solely on us.”
Johnson will have to do without defender Rocky Bushiri has been ruled out for at least three months with an ankle injury.
The 23-year-old was carried off on a stretcher off near the end of Sunday’s Scottish Cup defeat by Hearts at Easter Road and will be reviewed by an ankle specialist at the end of the week.
In a statement released by Hibs, Bushiri said: “This injury has been difficult for me to get my head around, but I have to stay positive and focus on returning stronger.
“I felt like Hibs fans were starting to see the best of me, so I’m determined to come back an even better player and hope to see all the fans soon.”
Johnson said: “First we’re all gutted for Rocky and wish him a speedy recovery.
“Rocky was an important player for us, and we felt like he was getting better week on week.
“We will provide him with all the support he needs, rally round him, and help him return fitter and stronger than before.”Published: by Radio NewsHub