Hibee dreaming of a goal after century of appearances

Hibs star Lewis Stevenson has revealed how he spends the night before a match dreaming of claiming his first goal for the Easter Road outfit.

Although Stevenson has been a first team regular for more than five years, clocking up his 100th appearance in a green and white shirt against St Johnstone, the last time Hibs were in action, he's yet to score a competitive goal.

In fact, the 22-year-old has only hit the back of the net once, scoring Hibs' third as they cruised to a 4-0 victory over Queen of the South in a pre-season friendly at Palmerston Park.

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And, although he hoped that strike would "open the floodgates," the Kirkcaldy-born utility man is still waiting - and dreaming.

As he looks to work towards a second century of matches for Hibs against Kilmarnock this weekend, Stevenson admitted he'd love to make the occasion by finally getting off the mark.

He said: "I thought scoring against Queen of the South would see the floodgates open but that hasn't happened unfortunately. I go to bed before a game and dream of getting a goal.

"I've scored a couple in my dreams but the dream ends before the celebration begins."

Stevenson's hope of breaking his duck rest, of course, on playing, Hibs' 2-1 victory over Kilmarnock at Easter Road between former boss John Hughes' departure and Colin Calderwood's arrival his first appearance of the season.

Up to that point, Stevenson had found himself out of favour, his last match having been the 4-2 defeat by Dundee United in March, a situation the youngster, named man-of-the-match as Hibs lifted the CIS Insurance Cup with a 5-1 victory over Saturday's opponents at Hampden in 2007, admits he found difficult to handle.

He said: "It's been good to get back playing. I'd played a lot of bounce matches but I'd gone some six months without playing a competitive game so it was hard to adapt when I was thrown back in, the pace is totally different and with thousands of fans watching."

Stevenson, who made his Hibs debut as a 17-year-old in a League Cup win over Ayr United at Somerset Park in 2005 - only Chris Hogg and Derek Riordan, back at Easter Road for a second spell, remain as team-mates from that day - admitted that while proud to reach a century of appearances, he once wondered if he'd ever fulfil his dream of becoming a professional football player.

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He told Hibernian Television: "When I was at school I always wanted to be a football player but at the back of my mind was the thought that not a lot of folk actually make it.

"So I am pretty proud to have reached this milestone. I'm 22 now which isn't that young in football terms these days. I played the majority of games when I first broke through but it's petered out a bit recently."

Stevenson agreed his own experiences this season pretty much mirror those of Hibs, some moments to remember, some indifferent times and others both he and his team-mates would rather forget. With the SPL season almost at the half-way point he said: "As a team we need to get a bit of consistency, setting a few targets for ourselves such as more clean sheets and more goals. If we can do both, then we will win more games. For myself I have to be ready to take the opportunity to play when it comes along."

As one of 16 first-team players who will enter the New Year knowing their Easter Road contracts are nearing an end, Stevenson realises the importance of taking every opportunity he can to impress Calderwood as the Hibs manager views the coming transfer window as a chance to begin shaping his own squad.

While agreeing it is an uncertain time for all concerned, Stevenson said: "Hibs mean a great deal to me and if I did move on, I'd always look out for Hibs."