On 21st May 2016 Alan Stubbs’ Hibernian entered Scottish football folklore by lifting the Scottish Cup at Hampden. On-loan striker Anthony Stokes scored twice either side of goals from Kenny Miller and Andy Halliday before captain David Gray headed in the winner in injury time. A pitch invasion and some ugly scenes followed the full-time whistle, before Gray was allowed to become the first Hibernian player in 114 years to lift the Scottish Cup high above the Hampden pitch.
Having missed out on promotion and the League Cup, Saturday was a final chance for Hibs to gain recognition for a good season. They met newly promoted Rangers off the back of a glut of fixtures, while their opponents had been able to take a rest period.
When the game kicked off, the rustiness in the Rangers players seemed clear. Hibs rushed forward, pressing high up the park and were rewarded after just three minutes. Anthony Stokes, who has had a quiet loan spell in Edinburgh, was allowed acres of space in the penalty area and finished with aplomb, to send the Hibernian fans into raptures.
Following their goal, Hibs began to sit back a little to protect their lead, inviting Rangers forward. Midfield Zelalem was allowed plenty of space in the middle of the park to orchestrate and spray play out to Rangers’ marauding fullbacks. The assist for Rangers first goal came from one such fullback, Tavenir, who picked Kenny Miller out with a wonderful cross which the striker headed past Conrad Logan to level the scores on 27 minutes.
Rangers went ahead after half-time thanks to a wonderful Andy Halliday strike. The Rangers fan and player gathered the ball more than 20 yards from goal and powered an unstoppable drive into the net to leave Hibs a goal behind and short of ideas. With 64 minutes played and Rangers ahead, it looked as if the Edinburgh team had once again “Hibsed it”
However, with little time remaining Alan Stubbs brought on passionate loanee Liam Henderson to change the game. Two Henderson corners provided the two goals which allowed Hibs to reverse their position and lift the cup. The first was headed in by Anthony Stokes, as he shook of his marker to equalise on the 80th minute.
With two minutes of injury time played, Fraser Fyvie set Anthony stokes up to dance into the penalty area and drive the ball at Wes Fotheringham in the Rangers goal. Liam Henderson flighted in the resulting corner, for David Gray to power in a header which sent Hampden into an electric combination of euphoria and disbelief.
Only minutes remained and, as referee Steven Mclean blew his whistle for full-time, thousands of Hibernian fans spilled onto the Hampden turf.