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  Thursday, 13 February, 2003, 01:08 GMT
Brebner is Hibs hero
Grant Brebner opened the scoring at Tannadice
Dundee United 2-3 Hibernian

Grant Brebner bagged all three goals for Hibs as the Edinburgh side survived a Dundee United comeback to secure passage in the Scottish Cup.

The midfielder put Bobby Williamson's team two goals up at half time only to see that lead evaporate thanks to strikes from Stephen O'Donnell and Jim Hamilton.

In a thrilling finish to an entertaining match, Brebner sealed the victory with a header.

Hibs were the more enterprising side and should have had the game wrapped up early on, but allowed the struggling Taysiders to make a game of it with some slack defending.

Daniele Chiarini, making his United debut, almost gifted Hibs a first-minute opener when he was dispossessed by Tam McManus, who laid the ball into the path of Brebner, but the midfielder's scuffed shot hit the crossbar from six yards out.

The lively McManus was causing problems for the United defence and his combination with Brebner took only 10 minutes to pay dividends.

Once more the striker hassled the United defence and broke down the right before bursting into the box and setting up his team-mate, who managed to bundle the ball into the net.

A dangerous cross into a crowded penalty area from Derek Townsley's broke off United defender Jim Lauchlan two yards out forcing Paul Gallacher into an instinctive save.

Hibs were making all of the play and Brebner added his second after 27 minutes when he picked a loose ball up to cut across the face of goal, evading a tackle from Mark Wilson, and coolly fired the ball into the bottom left corner of the net.

The impressive Brebner tested Paul Gallacher ten minutes later when he picked up a Mixu Paatelainen knock-down at the edge of the area, but the Scotland keeper managed to make a fine save.

Dundee United didn't manage a single serious shot on goal in the first half but came out fighting after the break.

The Tannadice side thought they had been rewarded after only two minutes of the half when Billy Dodds found space in the box to nod a Lauchlan header in the net, only to be flagged offside.

Grant Brebner
Brebner celebrates his winning goal
United were pressing hard but Hibs were still dangerous and Gallagher had to at his best to push away a fierce shot from McManus.

Substitute O'Donnell hit back for United after 70 minutes when he latched onto a sloppy defensive clearance by Hibs and blasted homea shot from 18 yards via a slight deflection.

Eight minutes later, Hamilton completed an unlikely comeback with a penalty when Yannick Zambernardi tripped Jim McIntyre.

However, Brebner was to have the last word when he headed home a cross from substitute John O'Neil to win the game in the 86th minute.

Hamilton thought he had levelled the match for a second time in the last minute but his shot was tipped on to the post by Hibs keeper Nick Colgan.

Dundee United: Gallacher, Daniel Chiarini, Lauchlan, McCraken, McCunnie (Hamilton 71), Wilson, Miller, Easton (O'Donnell 52), Paterson, Dodds, McIntyre.
Subs Not Used: Combe, Lilley, Duff.

Booked: Wilson.

Hibernian: Colgan, Fenwick, Smith, Zambernardi, Orman, Wiss, Townsley (O'Neil 76), Brebner, Murray, Paatelainen, McManus (O'Connor 73).
Subs Not Used: Westwater, Luna, Jack.

Booked: Zambernardi, Townsley, Paatelainen.

Attendance: 8,986 Referee: T Brown

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC Scotland's Scott Davie
"United are out of the Cup"
Hibs boss Bobby Williamson
"We got the breaks and we deserved them"
Top Scottish Cup stories now:

Links to more Scottish Cup stories are at the foot of the page.


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