Hibernian winger Martin Boyle scored a blistering first-half hat-trick to send his club through to the Scottish Cup final, where Ange Postecoglou’s Celtic awaits.
The Socceroo produced arguably his best professional football performance overnight. The 28-year-old netted an impressive hat-trick as Hibernian defeated Rangers 3-1.
The result sends Hibs through to the Scottish Cup final, where there will be a distinct Australian flavor to it as Ange Postecoglou’s Celtic will be the opponent.
Boyle has picked up where he left off last season where he was named in the SPL Team of the Year after his impressive form in which he scored 15 goals and registered 12 assists in all competitions.
This season, Boyle has already notched a remarkable 14 goals in his 18 appearances across all competitions as he continues to be Hibernian’s main attacking threat.
Boyle vs Ange?
There is nothing better than having Australians making their mark on the global game. Both Boyle and Ange Postecoglou have done that this season.
Postecoglou, in his first season as Celtic’s manager, has his side in second in the league table, just four points behind leaders Rangers. The Bhoys are currently unbeaten in their last nine games across all competitions.
With Postecoglou’s knowledge of Boyle and his game style, it will be interesting to see if the Aussie manager has any special plans to stop one of the in-form players in Scottish football.
Having seen what Boyle did to the league-leading Rangers in a devastating first-half spell, Ange will have to put some time into trying to curtail the Hibernian talisman.
Celtic has the best defensive record in the Scottish Premier League through 13 games, conceding just nine times. It will be tough to get past the best defence, but if one player can it’s Boyle.
In his 11 games so far in the league, Boyle has accounted for seven of Hibernian’s 15 goals. That equates to nearly half of the side’s scores.
If Hibernian is to get its hands on the Scottish League Cup trophy, then Boyle is going to have to be at the centre of it. Can the pacey winger get one over Ange in a game that will have millions of eyes glued to it?
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You would be hard-pressed not to think that despite their league position (seventh), the way they soaked up the pressure and remained defensively compact against Rangers suggests they will be up for the fight.
Boyle’s pace, power, and technical ability can cause any team problems, and Rangers can attest to that.
It does feel like every week, an Australian is making headlines all over the globe. Whether it be Ange, Boyle, or the Socceroos, good things are starting to happen for Australian football.
Either way, the match on December 19 is going to have an Aussie feel to it. One way or another we will be happy as someone will be walking away with silverware.
For Postecoglou, it will be vindication of sorts if he is to lift the trophy. For Boyle, it would rubber-stamp his standing as one of the in form players in the country.
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