Hibs dropped out of the Intertoto cup on away goals after failing to keep a clean sheet against a well organised Odense. Losing a goal early in the second half meant Hibs had to score three goals to get through to the UEFA cup qualifying round.
A brave effort saw Hibs score two but the elusive third goal would not come. Odense moved the ball about very well and the off the ball movement of their players was excellent however they did not look very dangerous in the final third. To be fair their goal was well worked and well taken.
Hibs had the better chances throughout the game but after striker Killen went off injured to be replaced by Paul Dalgleish (Son of Kenny), we did begin to look a bit disjointed. Hibs also had Fletcher away with the Scotland Under 19's, Scott Brown out through suspension and Beuzalin injured. Just shows how bare the squad is just now after also losing three key players in the summer.
Even with these players unavailable Hibs will be kicking themselves for not taking any of three good chances in the first half. The second half became a bit of a slog as Odense tried to protect their aggregate advantage and Hibs abandoned their normal passing game for a more direct route.
Rob Jones, Hibs new centre half who looked good all day, converted to a centre forward as Hibs threw everything at the Danes. One of the few good points out of this game was that the Hibs defence looked a lot stronger in the air now that Caldwell has been replaced, I doubt Jones will have the same passing ability but as Hibs lost so many goals from set pieces last season I think a player like Jones is what the doctor ordered.
The general feeling from the Hibs support is slight depression that we cannot even reach the qualifying round of the UEFA cup while our neighbours are still aiming for the Champions League. Maybe after the League programme starts on Saturday we will all feel a bit better. Hope to be able to report a better result this coming weekend.