BY IAIN COLLIN – @CCP_sport
NEIL Lennon feared Hibs were heading for another Scottish Cup final sob story as soon as they went behind to Rangers in a tumultuous climax to last season.
But the manner of the Easter Road side’s heroic comeback has given him massive belief they can build on that historic triumph and finally win promotion back to the Premiership.
Lennon was south of the border for the FA Cup final and admits he did not envisage his new club shedding themselves of their haunting Hampden hoodoo.
When he heard that Rangers had overcome their early deficit to assume a 2-1 lead in the second-half, he assumed a familiar tale was panning out at the national stadium.
He has already spoken of his long-held view that Hibs have too often suffered from a soft centre and he thought the circumstances of their injury-time defeat to Falkirk in their promotion play-off final just eight days before the cup final would have knocked the stuffing out them.
But he is thrilled with the steeliness the capital men displayed in finally getting their hands on the elusive trophy with their famous late comeback.
He said: “I didn’t see it coming, I have to say. Having lost to Falkirk, in the manner they did, and then when Rangers go 2-1 up you’re thinking ‘well, this is going to be three or four’.
“But, to be fair to them, they dug in and did something I hadn’t seen Hibs do before and that was score two goals from set-plays to go and win the game.
“They showed brilliant character to do that.
“I’m seeing more and more of that on the training pitch as well. I think we’ve got plenty of scope to work with here.
“The cup win should give the boys a big boost. Psychologically, it’s given the club a huge lift – not just the players, but the supporters and people in the background, the board.
“Just to get that monkey off their backs for a start, but also in the manner they did it as well.”