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Hibs boss Heckingbottom 'absolutely gutted' by derby defeat

The head coach said there's no hiding place as the team's poor run continued.

Paul Heckingbottom admitted he was feeling intense disappointment after his Hibs side let slip a lead to lose the Edinburgh derby 2-1 to Hearts.

Stevie Mallan had put Hibs in front with an eye-catching 35-yard strike at Easter Road but Hearts levelled through Uche Ikpeazu before Aaron Hickey's late goal sealed a win for the visitors.

Heckingbottom said it was worse than any other defeat as his team dropped to 11th in the Premiership and extended a run of five league games without a win.

"We talked last week about how everything is heightened in a derby, the feelings from them, win or lose." he said. "As you can imagine, I'm absolutely gutted.

"Everything is worse in those sort of games if you don't get the result you want.

"In terms of the game, I wish I was sat here talking about a fantastic goal and some big performances that won us the game.

"But I'm not. I'm here like a broken record saying for so long we were great, we couldn't kill the game off and we've come away with nothing."

'I'm feeling [the pressure]. They are not games you want to lose, whether you've been on a good run or a bad run.'
Paul Heckingbottom

There was pressure on both managers before the game and while Levein enjoyed the relief that a derby win brings, Heckingbottom didn't deny that he knew the defeat would only intensify scrutiny of his team and his management.

"I'm feeling it," he said. "They are not games you want to lose, whether you've been on a good run or a bad run.

"Would I feel any different if we had won two in a row before this? I don't know, I don't think I would.

"It's tough to take. You want the wins, you want to turn things round, you want to put right the things that are going wrong.

"But I wouldn't call it any different. This is a sickener in its own right. I understand the frustrations, the feelings, it's a tough one and the manner of the defeat is a tough one."

However, the Englishman wouldn't be drawn on whether the defeat would have any bearing on how the Hibs hierarchy viewed his position.

"The minute I start worrying about that or making decisions based on that, I'm not doing my job," he said.

"My job, along with the staff and the players, is to put it right on the pitch. Other things aren't our remit, our decision.

"We have just got to focus on our jobs, stand up, be strong, act like men and put it right. No hiding place."

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