Return to Edinburgh City a no-brainer for Hibee Lewis Allan

Lewis Allan, centre, did well at City last season
Lewis Allan, centre, did well at City last season
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Lewis Allan has revealed he turned down offers from a higher level to rejoin Edinburgh City on loan from Hibs.

The 20-year-old striker has agreed another temporary switch from Easter Road, having spent the final six months of last season at Meadowbank, netting four times as City retained their place in Ladbrokes League Two.

Allan will be joined by Hibs team-mate Sean Mackie, the full-back having agreed a six-month development loan. Now playing at Spartans’ Ainslie Park, Allan is back at City and revealed it was an easy decision to choose to don the black and white again.

“Last season was good and successful,” said the Borderer. “You see the guys the club are bringing in and talking about bringing in so it was a no-brainer really.

“I could’ve gone a league a higher, but I really enjoyed my football at City last year. I’m in my last year of my contract at Hibs, so I thought I may as well come back and play football every week and hopefully score as many goals as I can.

“It’s just six months initially but I’m sure we’ll review it at Christmas and see how things are going.”

Allan admitted the familiarity with City and League Two gave them the edge over other clubs vying for his signature. “I’ve played in this league before, and obviously two teams have come down [Stenhousemuir and Peterhead] , which will be a good test,” he explained.

“There’s no reason why we can’t be up there in the play-offs or pushing for promotion this year. I’m confident we’ll hit the ground running and have a really good season.”

Allan has already linked up with another familiar face from Easter Road. Farid El Alagui has been on trial at City and partnered Allan up front during Tuesday night’s 3-0 friendly defeat by Falkirk. The No.27 would be delighted if Gary Jardine decides to sign the Moroccan striker.

“I know Farid from when he first came in at Hibs,” he said. “I played pre-season games with him so I know how he likes to play and I loved playing with him there. He’s obviously older now and has had a few injuries, but he’s got bags of experience so if he was somebody we’re looking to bring in then I’d be delighted.”

That know-how at the top end of the pitch will be required if Craig Beattie’s switch to centre back is something Jardine is keen to stick with over the course of the season.

I loved playing with Beats last year and his physicality got me loads of chances,” Allan recalled. “Farid will do the same. If Gary’s able to bring Farid in it’ll be a real coup for us.”

Last season, Allan was joined at City by Hibs team-mate Ryan Porteous. Easter Road head coach Neil Lennon is yet to decide whether the teenage defender will go out on loan again this term – Dumbarton are keen to secure his services – but Allan believes his mate should jump at the chance to play regularly again.

“Ryan had a great season here last year,” said Allan. “He’s got loads of time left on his contract, though – around four years – so personally I think he should go out on loan again and play football.

“At his age, he doesn’t need to be sitting in the stands, and when you look at the squad, [Jordon] Forster’s left because he’s not going to play football so realistically, Porto’s not really going to play, is he? He’ll be around the squad, but he should go out, play as many games as he can and then next year try and push in to the first team.”

Allan is just disappointed the Scotland Under-19 international won’t be joining him at City again. “It would have been great to get him back,” he said. “It was a good squad last year. We’ve kept the core of that squad, so who knows what can happen this year? I’m looking forward to it.”