The city rivals travelled along the M8 to battle for the oldest club cup competition in the world. While Hearts were looking to secure their eighth cup victory, their rivals Hibs were looking to end a 110-year wait to secure the trophy.
Hearts had not lost to their city rivals for three years and that omen looked to continue when the Tynecastle side took the lead, albeit through an unlikely scorer.
The Hibs defence failed to deal with a Danny Grainger corner from the left, and as the ball ricocheted around the penalty box, McGowan’s blocked shot fell nicely to Darren Barr who prodded the ball past Hibs keeper Mark Brown from close range.
Just before the half hour mark, and after Hibs captain James McPake had headed a Leigh Griffiths free kick wide of the far post, Hearts talismanic playmaker Rudi Skacel doubled Hearts’ lead, with the Hibs defence playing a significant part in their own downfall.
Ian Black – playing in what could be his last game for Hearts – laid the ball to Skacel who at the edge of the Hibs box, was given too much time and space before he fired a deflected shot past the helpless Brown.
Hearts were dominating the game and should have been three goals to the good, when a Suso Santana shot looked goal-bound but McPake was on the line to clear the danger.
And it was that man McPake who hauled Hibs back into the game minutes before the interval. The on-loan Coventry defender latched onto the end of an Isaiah Osbourne cross to slide the ball past Jamie MacDonald from close range.
With the Hibs fans contemplating a comeback over the half time break, two goals in four minutes straight after the break signalled who would be celebrating at the final whistle.
Just a minute into the second half referee Craig Thomson awarded a controversial penalty after Kujabi, who was having a mare of a game, grabbed a fistful of Santana’s shirt before appearing to trip the Hearts midfielder just outside the box. But Thomson, rated as one of the best whistlers in Scotland, awarded a penalty and sent the Hibs left back off having booked him in the first half for a foul on the same player.
From the resulting free kick Danny Grainger fired past Brown to make it 3-1 and just three minutes later Hearts extended their lead through Ryan McGowan.
A Grainger corner found Skacel whose mis-hit shot was helped towards goal by Elliot, but the Hibs keeper knocked the ball up into the air for McGowan to head the ball over, when it looked like creeping in any way.
That goal killed off any slim chance of Hibs getting back into this game and thousands of their supporters made their way to the exits fearing a rout was on the cards.
Those Hibs fans who stayed, saw their side concede another slack goal as Skacel scored his second of the game from the edge of the box with 15 minutes remaining.
In the final minute of the game, referee Craig Thomson sent Hibs manager Pat Fenlon to the stand, for making an alleged gesture to the celebrating Hearts fans who were chanting Fenlon’s name mockingly.
After the match, Hibs manager Pat Fenlon apologised to the supporters. He admitted: “We didn’t turn up, we didn’t shine, we didn’t deserve to win the game. We didn’t show anything. I apologise to the fans for having to sit and watch that.
“The club has been like this for a while. There’s no desire and we’ve got to change the players to change the outlook of the club. We’ll work as hard as we can to turn things around.”
A jubilant Paulo Sergio commented: “I am very happy, it is a fantastic moment for us. The players deserve this more than anybody so I’m very happy with that performance.
“We had the control all of the whole game. I don’t think that at the end of a result like this we should speak too much about the game. I respect our opponents.”
Хибърниън – Хартс 1:5 by FootballKing2192
Hearts: MacDonald; McGowan, Webster, Zaliukas, Grainger; Suso, Barr, Black, Driver; Skacel, Elliott.
Subs: Ridgers, Beattie, Taouil, Robinson, Prychynenko.
Hibs: Brown, Doherty, McPake, Hanlon, Kujabi; Claros, Osborne, Stevenson, Soares; O’Connor, Griffiths.
Subs: Grant, Sproule, Doyle, O’Hanlon, Francomb.
Referee: Craig Thomson