Carlisle United 3 Hibernian 4: Hallam Hope scored a brilliant second-half goal with his Carlisle United future still under the microscope in the Blues’ 4-3 defeat to Hibernian in their opening pre-season friendly.

Frontman Hope, who this week has been linked with a move to League One team Blackpool, volleyed into the top corner early after the restart.

United did, in fact, lead 3-1 during the second period when Darren McGregor flicked United youngster Jamie Armstrong’s right-wing cross past Hibs stopper Ofir Marciano.

But goals from Scott Allan, Christian Doidge and Josh Campbell saw the away side come from behind to come out on top at the end of the seven-goal thriller at Brunton Park.

That all came after Steven Pressley’s side had drawn first blood on the half-hour mark tonight when former Northampton man Jack Bridge found the target from the edge of the box, only for Swiss striker Florian Kamberi to drill past Louis Gray seven minutes later.

The Blues gave a total of seven summer signings and four trialists run outs.

It was the away team, backed by a strong contingent, who had the first clear-cut chance on three minutes, with Daryll Horgan testing United keeper Gray.

The hosts were threatening when they attacked, but it was Hibernian with the next opportunity on the 16th minute when a corner fell kindly for Joe Newell who flashed inches wide.

The Cumbrians' first real opportunity then came on 28 minutes. Jack Iredale drove down the left and crossed for fellow summer signing Harry McKirdy, but his effort went wide.

It was United, and one of their new additions, who did break the deadlock, though, as Bridge drilled past away keeper Marciano from the edge of the penalty box.

But seven minutes later, Kamberi drilled past Gray to level the scores once more at the break.

Blues boss Pressley made changes at half-time and it didn't take long for in-demand Hope to make an impact. He hammered home after he had been found by Stefan Scougall.

Hope, 25, again tested Marciano on the 54th minute, but the away goalkeeper was equal to his low strike.

But United did double their lead on the 68th minute when youngsters Armstrong and Keighran Kerr combined, before McGregor flicked the ball past his own keeper.

Paul Heckingbottom’s men pulled one back on 73 minutes, with Allan making the most of a mix-up between Gray and Carlisle trialist defender Tyrone Duffus to slot home.

Hibernian then levelled three minutes from time when former Forest Green striker Doidge powerfully headed home a corner.

And the Scottish Premiership outfit completed the comeback as Campbell struck past Gray.

Carlisle named two trialists in their starting line-up.

One was Isaac Buckley-Ricketts who has been training with Pressley's side, while the other was not officially named by United, although was understood to be Miles Storey.

New signings Iredale, Jon Mellish, McKirdy and Bridge all started, while defender Byron Webster captained the side.

Cumbrian referee Anthony Backhouse took charge of the game.

Carlisle United: Gray, Iredale (Duffus 45), Mellis (Birch 59), trialist (Hope 45), Buckley-Ricketts (Charters 59), Jones (Reeves 45), McKirdy (Scougall 45), Webster (c) (Knight-Percival 45), Dixon (Armstrong 59), Bridge (Kerr 59), Branthwaite (Elliott 45).

Carlisle unused subs: Collin.

Carlisle goal: Bridge (30), Hope (47) and own goal (68).

Hibernian: Marciano, Horgan (Allan 59), Newell (Moon 45), Mallan (Stirling 66), James, Jackson, Kamberi (Murray 59), McGregor, Shaw (Doidge 59), Mackie (Doig 80), Campbell.

Hibernian unused subs: Maxwell, Sadiki.

Hibs goal: Kamberi (37), Allan (73), Doidge (87) and Campbell (90).

Ref: Anthony Backhouse.

Crowd: 2,631 (1,065 away fans).