Martin Boyle: Hibs boss 'lighting a candle' for Australia star as injury causes World Cup concern - but knock not to knee

Martin Boyle’s injury is not as bad as originally feared but Lee Johnson will still be “lighting a candle” for the Hibs forward.

Martin Boyle goes down injured during Hibs' win over St Mirren.
Martin Boyle goes down injured during Hibs' win over St Mirren.

Boyle hobbled off just nine minutes into the second period after a collision with Noah Kenneh with the Easter Road crowd hushed as he left the field.

“I’m praying it’s not too bad,” said Johnson. “I was very worried it was his knee but it’s not, it’s down the side, sort of the top of the shin. And we’re hoping the pain was contact to the nerve, because it went numb. That was what ended in him coming off but I’m lighting a candle for him tonight hoping he’s alright.”With the World Cup hanging over Boyle, Johnson admitted that any knock will come with added concern for the player. “It’s going to be difficult psychologically for him but I have to say his professionalism has been outstanding, he has never shirked anything in training or games,” said the Hibs manager. “That’s why he deserves to go to the World Cup, for that consistency.”

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Meanwhile, Johnson was inevitably satisfied with what felt like a good day at the office as Hibs moved up to third and finished a demanding week on a positive note. “We just wanted this game to come and it was a must-win game for us because we knew we could leap frog St Mirren and we wanted to stop the rot,” he said. “We’ve maintained belief in what we were doing, there were some excellent performances on the pitch, five or six really outstanding ones. “You do feel relief after such an intense week. We had lost three on the spin, although I don’t think our performances had deserved that.”

Hibs manager Lee Johnson offers advice from the touchline.

Johnson also stressed that there is more to come from his side as they strive to piece together a consistent run of form. “I don’t feel this team is anywhere near finished what we can do,” he said. “We have players to come back in, we have had to put players in at different points and you start to see them build a connection.”