Kenny Shiels is acutely aware of the challenge which faces Terry Butcher today in hauling his Hibernian side out of their rut in time to save their top-flight status.

The Easter Road side must win at home to Kilmarnock if they are to avoid the relegation play-off place.

It is a task which is made to seem that much harder given that Hibs have garnered just one victory in 18 matches, while the visitors need just a point to avoid finishing in 11th.

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As a former Kilmarnock manager, Shiels could perhaps be forgiven were he to root for an away win today. However, the Northern Irishman also has sympathy for Butcher as he tries to provoke a much more convincing performance from his toiling players.

It is a task which Shiels faced last season as manager of Morton, before resigning not long after a 10-2 defeat in the last league match. "The dynamic is difficult," said Shiels. "When you're on a losing run, which Hibs are, and you have to make the game, it becomes doubly difficult because you have to make things happen, be creative and win the game.

"It's very difficult for the manager to lift them up. It's so amazing the fall that Hibs have had to endure."