JAMES McPake last night insisted Hibernian had got the William Hill Scottish Cup draw they had dreamed of after being handed the chance to make at least partial amends for May’s humiliating final defeat by Hearts.
Hibernian will host their rivals at Easter Road on either 1 or 2 December, while other eye-catching ties to emerge from yesterday’s fourth-round draw at Hampden were an all-Highland clash between Ross County and Inverness, Aberdeen v Motherwell, Rangers v Elgin, Celtic v Inverurie or Arbroath and a trip to face St Mirren for Bonnyrigg Rose if they can overcome Brechin in their third-round replay.
It was the Edinburgh derby, however, that grabbed most of the attention so soon after Hearts’ 5-1 cup final win. Neither club had a representative at the draw available for comment, but McPake – one of just four players from the cup final starting line-up who remain in manager Pat Fenlon’s first-choice XI – said he was delighted Hibs had been given home advantage. “It’s the tie we all wanted,” said McPake.
“First and foremost, we’re just happy to have a home tie and it will be a massive game against Hearts. I had a feeling we would get them and it’s a game everybody is looking forward to being a part of.”
Hearts manager John McGlynn, who replaced cup-winning manager Paulo Sergio in June, was equally impassioned by the derby tie.
McGlynn told his club’s website: “I’m looking forward to a very exciting Scottish Cup derby game. It’s quite strange with the cup final and then the first time the two clubs come back into it we face each other in the first game. It’s surreal and remarkable but that’s how it is.
“It’s one that we’ll look forward to: management team, players and fans alike. Everyone will look forward to it. It’s exciting stuff. It’s a month away so it’s very important that we have great form going into that game.
“That really means winning games between now and then and having everyone confident going down to Easter Road. We don’t want to be distracted by that game. If anything, we want it to be a motivation to be winning games going into that fixture. Hopefully that’ll be a real incentive for us.”
Rangers and Celtic were both handed home draws. Ally McCoist’s team face Irn-Bru Third Division rivals Elgin following their 7-0 third-round win over Alloa at Ibrox. City lost 5-1 in Govan on league duty in September but sit just two points behind leaders Rangers in the table. Celtic face the winners of the third-round replay between Inverurie Locos and Arbroath. The Highland League side travel to Gayfield on Saturday following a 3-3 draw.
In the third all-SPL encounter Aberdeen host Motherwell, who have fond memories of starting their cup campaign at Pittodrie, Stevie Kirk scoring the only goal in 1991 on their way to lifting the trophy.
Aberdeen v Motherwell
Partick Thistle v Dunfermline
Kilmarnock v Queen of the South
Hibernian v Hearts
Airdrie or Raith v Deveronvale
Turriff United v
Albion Rovers or Morton
Livingston v Dundee
Rangers v Elgin City
Forfar or Nairn County v Ayr United
Ross County v Inverness
Celtic v Inverurie or Arbroath
Dumbarton v Hamilton
Cowdenbeath v St Johnstone
Stranraer or Queen’s Park v Dundee United
Stenhousemuir or Berwick v Falkirk
St Mirren v Brechin or Bonnyrigg Rose
Ties to be played 1-2 December