{"JP":[ {"NewsSection":{"name":"football","detaillevel":"full", "Articles": {"count":25,"detaillevel":"full","articlesList":[ {"article": { "url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/inverness-interested-in-deal-for-hearts-midfielder-anthony-mcdonald-1-4860429","id":"1.4860429","articleHeadline": "Inverness interested in deal for Hearts midfielder Anthony McDonald","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548160606035 ,"articleLead": "Inverness Caledonian Thistle are interested in signing Hearts teenager Anthony McDonald on loan until the end of the season.","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860428.1548160757!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Inverness are interested in a loan deal for Hearts teenager Anthony McDonald"} ,"articleBody": "

The midfielder has made just seven appearances at Tynecastle Park this term but could help Inverness in their Championship promotion push.

John Robertson, manager of the Highland club, is known to play attacking football which would suit 17-year-old McDonald's game. Robertson worked as an official Hearts ambassador before leaving for a second spell in charge of Inverness in June 2017.

The following month, McDonald graduated from the Riccarton youth academy to sign a professional contract at Tynecastle.

He made a senior breakthrough last season and played 14 times. However, he is keen for more first-team experience having found himself marginalised since 18 players arrived at the Edinburgh club last summer.

The Evening News revealed at the start of the month that McDonald and his fellow Hearts teenager Harry Cochrane had been the subject of loan enquiries from several Scottish clubs.

Inverness are monitoring McDonald and could move to take him north on loan before the January transfer window closes.

" ,"byline": {"email": "barry.anderson@jpress.co.uk" ,"author": "Barry Anderson"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4860428.1548160757!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860428.1548160757!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Inverness are interested in a loan deal for Hearts teenager Anthony McDonald","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Inverness are interested in a loan deal for Hearts teenager Anthony McDonald","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4860428.1548160757!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/neil-lennon-hails-transfer-tool-that-sold-stephane-omeonga-on-hibs-move-1-4860513","id":"1.4860513","articleHeadline": "Neil Lennon hails ‘transfer tool’ that sold Stephane Omeonga on Hibs move","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548167525000 ,"articleLead": "

Neil Lennon has revealed how Hibs’ modern approach to recruitment helped secure the signing of midfielder Stephane Omeonga on loan until the end of the season.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860512.1548167520!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Stephane Omeonga joined Hibs on loan from Genoa on Monday. Picture: SNS Group"} ,"articleBody": "

The 22-year-old joined Hibs from Genoa on Monday having made three appearances in Serie A this season and admitted he was well impressed by the club’s “fantastic” two-part presentation during discussions.

Omeonga goes straight into the squad for the Ladbrokes Premiership game against Motherwell at Fir Park.

Boss Lennon said ahead of Wednesday night’s game: “It’s just a DVD about what the club can offer the players when they come in and we did some individual footage of Stephane as well, what we liked about him, what we expect from him going forward. We have been doing it for a while.

• READ MORE - Five things Hibs fans should know about new signing Stephane Omeonga

“The guys in the IT department do the package and then we show the players round the training ground and around the stadium as well so they actually see it in reality.

“It is just a tool we use to try to get a transfer across the line.

“We really like the look of him from what we have seen. Obviously he has been playing at a really high level in Serie A, we liked his attributes and have been really impressed by what we have seen of him live.

“He is the type of player we feel we need in midfield, just that little bit of extra dynamism and energy in that area.”

Belgium Under-21 international Omeonga said: “It was a video of the city, the facilities, the stadium and the fans and the fans were fantastic.

“I just liked it. Plus the fact they wanted me, they also made an analysis of what I can bring to the team.

“I’m a fighter who always gives my best. Even in bad days I will always give all I have.”

Lennon is positive about pairing Omeonga with Ryan Gauld, who made an impressive debut against Elgin at the weekend after arriving on loan from Sporting CP.

• READ MORE - Hibs confirm loan signing of Genoa midfielder Stephane Omeonga

The manager said: “It is still very embryonic obviously but we think we have a very good player there (Gauld) and Stephane will hopefully add to that attacking intent we hope to bring to the second half of the season.

“There is no question that, at times, we have plenty of the ball but we just miss that bit of pace and ingenuity - all the forward-thinking players will get a lift when they see the calibre of players coming in the door.

“It is important we turn good performances into wins.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4860512.1548167520!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860512.1548167520!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Stephane Omeonga joined Hibs on loan from Genoa on Monday. Picture: SNS Group","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Stephane Omeonga joined Hibs on loan from Genoa on Monday. Picture: SNS Group","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4860512.1548167520!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-boss-craig-levein-feeling-better-about-his-squad-1-4860453","id":"1.4860453","articleHeadline": "Hearts boss Craig Levein ‘feeling better’ about his squad","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548163693000 ,"articleLead": "

Craig Levein is enjoying having the winning feeling back at Tynecastle as Hearts look to make it four wins from four when they host Dundee on Wednesday.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860452.1548163688!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts manager Craig Levein says his players are building confidence"} ,"articleBody": "

Hearts started the season in impressive form, which took them to the top of the Ladbrokes Premiership, but a 3-0 Betfred Cup semi-final defeat to Celtic at Murrayfield in October led to a slump during which they secured only one win from ten games.

However, the 1-0 William Hill Scottish Cup win over Livingston on Sunday made it three wins in a row and booked them a last-16 tie at home to Auchinleck Talbot.

Ahead of Wednesday night’s game against bottom side Dundee, Levein said: “Confidence is a big thing.

“It wasn’t a fantastic match at the weekend but we won and progressed to the next round of the cup – that helps the players feel good about themselves and when they feel good about themselves they play better.

“I am looking forward to the game. I don’t think it will be easy in any way but I feel better that we are in better form.

“It was a frustrating period altogether. Sometimes you can start a slide and it doesn’t halt.

“The good thing is we have managed to turn things back around, three games without losing a goal.

“I was really happy with the performance of Conor Shaughnessy, making his debut, and also with David Vanecek, who is yet to get up to full speed.

“We have options now if someone goes out that we probably didn’t have even though we had a big squad. I feel better about that.”

Levein was delighted to see 22-year-old former Sheffield Wednesday midfielder Sean Clare get his first goal, which came against Livi, since he joined Hearts in late September.

The former Scotland boss said: “Tynecastle is a difficult place to play, the expectations are really high.

“Sean came in when we had lost a lot of our best players carrying a little bit of an injury (foot) and also hadn’t played consistently for a long time.

“It wasn’t an ideal situation for him. He has been good in spells and I think he is gradually playing himself into good form.

“He has worked tremendously hard on his fitness and also getting over this injury he had, which was quite serious, so for him to get the winning goal was a great moment so I am very pleased for him.”

Levein, who will be without attacker Steven Naismith through suspension, is taking nothing for granted against Dundee, who continue their struggle to survive showing little improvement in results since boss Jim McIntyre took over from Neil McCann in October.

He said: “It is very difficult when you take over a team and you have to wait until the transfer window opens to make differences and sometimes you can’t make a difference because you don’t have any money.

“I think Jim will do a good job but I am hoping the start of that is next week sometime.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4860452.1548163688!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860452.1548163688!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hearts manager Craig Levein says his players are building confidence","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts manager Craig Levein says his players are building confidence","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4860452.1548163688!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/spfl-announces-new-tartan-boot-award-for-scotland-s-top-scorer-1-4860451","id":"1.4860451","articleHeadline": "SPFL announces new ‘tartan boot’ award for Scotland’s top scorer","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548162921000 ,"articleLead": "

The Scottish Professional Football League (SPFL) has announced that the top scorer across the four senior leagues in Scotland will receive a “tartan boot” award at the end of the current campaign.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860450.1548162917!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The new awards will be produced by match ball supplier Mitre. Picture: SNS Group"} ,"articleBody": "

The top scorer in every league will also receive a “tartan ball” award, the league body confirmed.

Mitre, the SPFL’s offical Match Ball supplier, will produce the awards. The firm agreed a four-year extension to their long-standing partnership with the SPFL earlier this week.

• READ MORE - Steven Gerrard: Incoming Rangers signing is still ‘the enemy’

Rangers forward Alfredo Morelos is leading the scoring charts in the Ladbrokes Premiership with 12 goals, while Steven Dobbie and Lawrence Shankland of Queen of the South and Ayr United are tied on 18 goals in the Ladbrokes Championship. Kevin Nisbet of Raith Rovers leads the way in Ladbrokes League One, also with 18 goals, while Edinburgh City’s prolific forward Blair Henderson has racked up 21 strikes so far this season in Ladbrokes League Two.

SPFL chief executive Neil Doncaster said: “The level of competition across the SPFL is extremely high and the launch of our top goalscorer awards will add even more excitement and rightly recognise the country’s top finishers across all four leagues.

• READ MORE - This is how much it will cost Celtic to sign forward interesting Premier League sides

“Over the years, we’ve seen a number of fantastic goalscorers find the back of the net, and we look forward to celebrating this year’s achievements at the end of the season with our Tartan Ball and Tartan Boot awards.”

Sean Kavanagh, Global Director of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship at Mitre, added: ““The Tartan Ball and Tartan Boot awards are fantastic recognition of the top scorers in the division and it’s great for us to be able to support this and further enhance our partnership.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4860450.1548162917!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860450.1548162917!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "The new awards will be produced by match ball supplier Mitre. Picture: SNS Group","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "The new awards will be produced by match ball supplier Mitre. Picture: SNS Group","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4860450.1548162917!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/celtic-boss-gives-update-on-future-of-hibs-target-lewis-morgan-1-4860296","id":"1.4860296","articleHeadline": "Celtic boss gives update on future of Hibs target Lewis Morgan","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548153199000 ,"articleLead": "

Brendan Rodgers says it’s likely Lewis Morgan will be heading out on loan in the January transfer window - though the Celtic boss revealed they’ve yet to receive an enquiry from Hibs.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860294.1548153194!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hibs have been linked with a move for Lewis Morgan in January. Picture: SNS"} ,"articleBody": "

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The Easter Road side have been linked with the 22-year-old since the beginning of the January transfer window.

It is believed that manager Neil Lennon is looking to add options in the wide areas with Manchester City loanee Thomas Agyepong having struggled with injuries since his move in the summer window.

Aberdeen have reportedly joined the chase for Morgan, while there is one destination Rodgers has already ruled out.

Rodgers said: “We’ve spoken about the idea of going on loan but he has a number of possibilities. He loved his time at St Mirren and it’s nothing against the club or manager. But speaking to him and his agent, if he moves out then it will be somewhere different.

“I haven’t heard anything from Hibs. There is quite a bit of interest around him. We’ll see where he ends up. He might even end up staying put. He’s a good boy who has been unfortunate here. The players who are in his position have played well and been consistently available. He is at the age where he needs to get games into his legs again.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4860294.1548153194!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860294.1548153194!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hibs have been linked with a move for Lewis Morgan in January. Picture: SNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hibs have been linked with a move for Lewis Morgan in January. Picture: SNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4860294.1548153194!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5982159125001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/craig-levein-explains-why-he-ll-keep-faith-with-colin-doyle-in-hearts-goal-1-4860034","id":"1.4860034","articleHeadline": "Craig Levein explains why he’ll keep faith with Colin Doyle in Hearts goal","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548138619000 ,"articleLead": "

After three successive clean sheets, Hearts manager Craig Levein will keep faith with goalkeeper Colin Doyle provided the Irishman’s form continues.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860033.1548090747!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Colin Doyle has kept three clean sheets in a row for Hearts. Pic: SNS"} ,"articleBody": "

Doyle kept Livingston out in Sunday’s 1-0 Scottish Cup triumph to follow shutouts against Hamilton and Hibs prior to the winter break. He now has a firm grip of the goalkeeping slot at Tynecastle Park, where Hearts host Premiership matches against Dundee tomorrow night and St Johnstone on Saturday.

The 33-year-old spent the first half of the season as deputy to the Czech Zdenek Zlamal. Both keepers were signed last summer, with Zlamal already in place as No.1 when Doyle arrived.

Zlamal was relegated to the substitutes’ bench after December’s 5-0 defeat by Livingston and Doyle has stepped in with some confident displays. Levein is hoping they continue over the coming weeks and stressed that both goalkeepers have plenty to offer.

“I gave Bobby [Zlamal] a fair run earlier on in the season so it’s up to Colin, really,” the manager told the Evening News. “We are in the fortunate situation where both of them can do us a turn.

“As long as I’m fair and treating them both the same, then I don’t see any reason why we can’t get the best out the both of them. Bobby has played more games for us than Colin but I wouldn’t say Colin has done anything to make me feel negative in any way.

“It’s good, strong, honest competition. That always helps to keep both goalkeepers on their toes. There is a fair bit of respect between them, so that’s good.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4860033.1548090747!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860033.1548090747!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Colin Doyle has kept three clean sheets in a row for Hearts. Pic: SNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Colin Doyle has kept three clean sheets in a row for Hearts. Pic: SNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4860033.1548090747!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/scottish-football-live-no-new-hibs-deal-for-ambrose-gerrard-no-offers-for-morelos-celtic-boss-rubbishes-right-back-link-us-international-nears-rangers-deal-1-4860309","id":"1.4860309","articleHeadline": "Scottish Football Live: No new Hibs deal for Ambrose | Gerrard: No offers for Morelos | Celtic boss rubbishes right-back link | US international nears Rangers deal","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548165488000 ,"articleLead": "

Follow The Scotsman’s daily blog as we keep you updated with all the latest news, views, rumours and much more from around Scottish football.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860307.1548165484!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Steven Gerrard has said there have been no offers for Alfredo Morelos. Picture: SNS/Craig Foy"} ,"articleBody": "

Refresh for live updates.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4860307.1548165484!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860307.1548165484!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Steven Gerrard has said there have been no offers for Alfredo Morelos. Picture: SNS/Craig Foy","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Steven Gerrard has said there have been no offers for Alfredo Morelos. Picture: SNS/Craig Foy","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4860307.1548165484!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5790964474001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/hibs-stevie-mallan-glad-to-get-monkey-off-his-back-after-hitting-double-figures-1-4859986","id":"1.4859986","articleHeadline": "Hibs’ Stevie Mallan glad to get monkey off his back after hitting double figures","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548138613000 ,"articleLead": "

It’s been a while coming, but Stevie Mallan is just delighted to have taken his goals tally into double figures, so ending a 12-game drought.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859985.1548087506!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Stevie Mallan had not scored since the beginning of October but will now target 15 goals ' and then aim for 20"} ,"articleBody": "

And it mattered little to the Hibs midfielder that his tenth goal came from the penalty spot rather than being, like his previous nine, a spectacular strike from outside the 18-yard box.

Mallan stepped up after Flo Kamberi had an earlier attempt from 12 yards saved by Thomas McHale. But Mallan sent the Elgin City goalkeeper the wrong way as he drilled home a third first-half goal in what turned out to be a comfortable 4-0 win to take Hibs into the fifth round of the William Hill Scottish Cup.

Having seen that early season goal rush dry up – he hadn’t scored since netting a double against Hamilton at the beginning of October – Mallan has his sights set on adding plenty more to his total.

Now joint top scorer with Swiss striker Kamberi, the 22-year-old said: “Obviously I wish I had scored a couple more before now but it’s been one of those periods you go through as a player and a team.

“It was good having come to the club in the summer to have scored all those goals early on but I’ve been wanting to get to double figures and kick on again.

“The penalty was a bit different to my other goals for the club in that it was my first from inside the box but now the aim is to score 15, then 20.

“The manager has always wanted me to get forward and has encouraged me to do what I do so hopefully I’ll start scoring more again – and put in better performances.”

Mallan revealed there was never any question of him not taking over spot-kick duties after Kamberi had seen a second successive penalty saved, making sure he grabbed the ball after his team-mate had been tripped by Elgin’s Brian Cameron before anyone else could get their hands on it.

He said: “Flo missed so I was next in line. Paul Hanlon had run up from the back but I got the ball first and thankfully put it away. I’d scored a couple of penalties for St Mirren so I’d like to think I’m now on them the next time we get one.”

The visit of Elgin gave Hibs fans their first glimpse of Ryan Gauld, signed on loan from Sporting Lisbon, while Stephane Omeonga, who had arrived in Edinburgh to put the finishing touches to his move from Italian outfit Genoa, watched on from the stand, signs, insisted Mallan, of just how far and wide the Capital club’s scouting system operates.

Gauld made an immediate impact, the former Dundee United midfielder supplying a defence-splitting pass for Kamberi to round McHale and slide the ball home from a tight angle before Daryl Horgan, Mallan and Horgan again completed a comfortable win for the Premiership club.

Mallan said: “We saw how good a player Ryan is in training last week, he’s someone who likes to take the ball and people can play off him. He’ll be feeding the midfielders and linking with Flo. He always seems to have the next pass already in his head, always has that yard of space around him, always in the hole looking for the ball.

“The manager always wants our passes, whether in defence or midfield to be going forward and that through-ball from Ryan to Flo is what he’ll be wanting to see.”

Gauld shot to prominence at Tannadice, finding himself the subject of a £3 million move to Portugal at the age of just 18 but was then farmed out on various loan spells as he was unable to command a place in Sporting’s side.

However, insisted Mallan, there’s no doubting his new team-mate’s ability.

He said: “Ryan had all that hype at the start of his career when he burst on to the scene at United. I’m not to sure what has happened since. But we can only be pleased that a player of his calibre wanted to come here.

“I think Ryan just wants to play football again at a high level and that’s what he’ll get at Hibs. We want to play attacking football and he is the type that will help us massively in that regard, I think we saw that right away on Saturday.

“Hopefully I can strike up a good partnership with him that can benefit the team.”

Like others at Easter Road, Mallan confessed to knowing little about Omeonga but pointed to the fact that as a Belgian Under-21 internationalist with Serie A experience, the midfielder’s credentials are pretty good.

He said: “If Stephane comes in and helps us, then great. The more quality players we have at the club the better.

“But I think Ryan coming from Portugal and Stephane arriving from Italy just shows how determined the club are to get the best possible players to Easter Road.

“This time last year Flo and Jamie Maclaren came in, from Switzerland and Germany, two players most Hibs fans had probably never heard of at that time, and they did really well.

“Now it’s Ryan and Stephane from elsewhere in Europe while Mark Milligan came in earlier in the season from Australia.

“It just goes to show the attraction of Hibs that we are able to bring in players not only from all over Europe, but the world.”

The net may have been cast far and wide but it is a player much closer to home the Hibs support are now hoping will become the next arrival in this transfer window – midfielder Scott Allan.

The 27-year-old has already agreed to return to Easter Road for a third time, signing a pre-contract deal to join on a three-year contract in the summer when his current agreement with Celtic comes to an end.

But negotiations are already underway, which Lennon hopes will see Allan back in Edinburgh before the end of the month, the Hibs head coach believing he wants to get back playing sooner rather than later after finding himself frozen out at Celtic Park.

And, again, insisted Mallan, it would further strengthen the squad as they seek to haul themselves back into the top six of the Ladbrokes Premiership following a disappointing first half of the season which saw them slip from second to eighth on the back of a run of just two wins in 13 matches.

He said: “It would be good if we could get Scott in this month, he’d bring even more competition for places which is good for any club.

“Performances rise when people are having to fight for their jersey and find it’s not easy to get into the team, that’s what we need.

“If Scott comes in it would be another top quality player already well known and loved by the supporters after what he’s done here previously and that can only help us going forward.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859985.1548087506!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859985.1548087506!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Stevie Mallan had not scored since the beginning of October but will now target 15 goals ' and then aim for 20","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Stevie Mallan had not scored since the beginning of October but will now target 15 goals ' and then aim for 20","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859985.1548087506!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/gary-mackay-solid-hearts-just-awaiting-a-spark-to-fire-1-4860059","id":"1.4860059","articleHeadline": "Gary Mackay: Solid Hearts just awaiting a spark to fire","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548138601000 ,"articleLead": "

It feels like Hearts are just awaiting a spark at the moment and, when it comes, it could set us alight for the rest of the season.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860058.1548093068!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "David Vanecek will have a lot to offer Hearts once fully fit"} ,"articleBody": "

If we continue to get solid performances and get results, then somewhere along the line you will hope to hit form in an attacking and creative manner. As long as our solid base continues, then a really positive attacking display comes along, it will be the one which can push us on to that next level. Maybe the level we saw earlier in the campaign when everyone is fit.

It will inspire confidence and help the team gain momentum. If you can score three goals in a game, whether you win 3-0, 3-1 or 3-2, you have a blend in the attacking third.

It would be nice to see that on Wednesday night against Dundee because it would set us up nicely for what, on paper, looks a more difficult game on the Saturday against St Johnstone. There is no doubt Tommy Wright’s team are feeling that kind of confidence themselves right at this minute.

For Hearts, it is going to take time. Steven Naismith isn’t long back, David Vanecek has qualities but I think he looks a long way from full match fitness. That means there is more to come because a lot of individuals have more to give to the team.Once you have players hitting their peaks individually, then you have the collective of the team getting stronger and stronger.

Sunday’s win against Livingston was important to get to the next round of the Scottish Cup. The goal settled us and we were the better team in the second half, although Livingston will feel a wee bit hard done by.

If you keep a clean sheet in a cup tie then you have the best chance possible of winning it, so it was pleasing to see our defence keep Livingston out. We looked solid and ended up winning the game on the back of that defensive performance.

We now have another two home games to come, plus the Scottish Cup draw has been quite kind to us. There is a big enough squad to cope with the fixtures and that allows for a bit of rotation. Thankfully, we are getting near to our strongest team again.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4860058.1548093068!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860058.1548093068!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "David Vanecek will have a lot to offer Hearts once fully fit","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "David Vanecek will have a lot to offer Hearts once fully fit","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4860058.1548093068!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/conor-shaughnessy-sets-the-tone-with-excellent-hearts-debut-1-4859876","id":"1.4859876","articleHeadline": "Conor Shaughnessy sets the tone with excellent Hearts debut","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548138600000 ,"articleLead": "

Galway lads tend to enjoy a physical challenge so it was no surprise Conor Shaughnessy excelled on his Hearts debut.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859875.1548079462!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Conor Shaughnessy marshalled Livingston forward Dolly Menga, pictured, during Hearts' Scottish Cup victory. Pic: SNS"} ,"articleBody": "

As Livingston shelled balls on top of the loanee centre-back during Sunday’s Scottish Cup tie, he responded by winning headers, tackles and passing forward imaginatively.

Attention focused mainly on Hearts’ other new recruit, the Czech forward David Vanecek, allowing Shaughnessy to quietly show why he was lured north from Leeds United as Jimmy Dunne’s replacement. Hearts identified him as soon as Dunne hinted at returning to parent club Burnley. Early evidence suggests the four-month loan deal is a sound move.

Any fixture against the modern-day Livingston guarantees a fair number of aerial duals, and the weekend cup tie at Tynecastle Park was no exception. Shaughnessy handled the bombardment with aplomb in a game where neither team produced much aesthetically pleasing football.

The 22-year-old showed good levels of aggression, pace when required, and good timing in challenges both in the air and on the ground. The physicality didn’t worry him, perhaps due to an upbringing on Ireland’s west coast in amongst brutal sports like hurling and gaelic football.

That and time in youth academies at Reading and Leeds moulded him into a capable and commanding defender – one who looks capable of endearing himself to Hearts fans.

“I thought it was a fantastic debut for a centre-back,” said Jon Daly, the Hearts first-team coach who is also a fellow Irishman. “Conor was aggressive, he won his headers and tackles, he was composed and picked passes through the lines, fed balls into the striker. Overall, as debuts go, I don’t think it could have gone much better for him.

“The defence got a clean sheet and I thought Conor was excellent. As a centre-back, first and foremost, you are looking at defending and getting clean sheets. Everything else Conor brought to the table was spot-on and really good to see.”

Dunne earned enormous respect from coaching staff, colleagues and supporters due to a series of consistent displays in maroon.

His five-month loan in Scotland captured attention down south, to the point where he headed back to Burnley knowing another loan move to Sunderland was awaiting his signature. Shaughnessy, to his credit, does not look fazed about stepping into the void left by his compatriot.

“Jimmy was fantastic for us and obviously got a loan move to Sunderland off the back of what he did here,” said Daly. “I think Jimmy would be the first to tell you that. His loan move here was very successful and it worked for him in that regard.

“This is a great club to come and play at. It obviously wasn’t a full house at the weekend but the majority of the time it is full, which gives you that atmosphere. Conor has come from Leeds United, which is a very similar club in terms of atmosphere and pressure to perform.

“Sunday was a cup game, Livingston were throwing balls forward and making him compete. I thought he dealt with that really well. He just took it in his stride. Games are coming thick and fast for him now and he needs to just maintain the level he set against Livingston.”

Hearts resume Premiership duties this week by hosting Dundee tomorrow night and St Johnstone on Saturday before a trip to Kilmarnock a week on Friday.

Shaughnessy is being asked to hit the ground running in a new environment. That will bring some different challenges for a player with only 15 senior appearances to his name in England. Hearts are prepared to put their faith in him, however.

“I think he is fit enough,” said Daly. “He’s been down at Leeds training and playing with their under-23s, so he is fit and has been playing matches. I think you could see on Sunday that he looked comfortable in terms of fitness. As a young player, he might find the games coming up difficult but these are the situations he needs to deal with. He has to learn and adapt to it.

“Down in England, they play Saturday-Tuesday-Saturday-Tuesday. I don’t think playing three games in a week should be a problem for him.”

Shaughnessy’s arrival also increases the Irish contingent within the Hearts dressing room once again. Daly aside, goalkeeper Colin Doyle, winger Jake Mulraney and recently-returned striker Aidan Keena all hail from the Emerald Isle.

Keena’s season-long loan at Dunfermline was cut short earlier this month and he is now back at Riccarton to compete for a first-team place.

He was an unused substitute against Livingston but has been promised an opportunity in the weeks ahead. As a former striker himself, Daly is looking forward to helping the teenager with his quest to establish himself at Hearts.

“They are all good lads, good honest boys who work hard,” explained Daly. “I’m delighted to see Keena back. He had a very successful loan at Dunfermline. I’m always talking to him about waiting for his opportunity and needing to be patient. It didn’t feel the right time to get him on against Livingston because of the way the game panned out.

“Ideally, we would have liked to get him on the park at some stage. He came back from Dunfermline last week and trained really well. The games are coming thick and fast and I’m sure he is going to get an opportunity. It’s down to him to make sure he takes it.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "BARRY ANDERSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859875.1548079462!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859875.1548079462!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Conor Shaughnessy marshalled Livingston forward Dolly Menga, pictured, during Hearts' Scottish Cup victory. Pic: SNS","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Conor Shaughnessy marshalled Livingston forward Dolly Menga, pictured, during Hearts' Scottish Cup victory. Pic: SNS","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859875.1548079462!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/first-hearts-goal-will-be-boost-sean-clare-needs-says-michael-smith-1-4859983","id":"1.4859983","articleHeadline": "First Hearts goal will be boost Sean Clare needs, says Michael Smith","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548138601000 ,"articleLead": "

Michael Smith believes Sean Clare’s first Hearts goal will give the Englishman a huge confidence jolt as he strives to find top form.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859981.1548087267!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Sean Clare celebrates with team-mate David Vanecek after scoring against Livingston"} ,"articleBody": "

Clare’s classy finish decided Sunday’s Scottish Cup fourth-round tie against Livingston and earned Hearts a home draw against junior club Auchinleck Talbot.

Smith, who recently signed a new two-year contract extension at Tynecastle, hopes the midfielder can relax after opening his scoring account.

Still only 22, Clare joined Hearts on a three-year deal in September after leaving Sheffield Wednesday. He has struggled for consistency in 14 appearances so far but Smith expects him to take a big boost from Sunday.

“It will be massive for him. We know what type of player he is,” said the Northern Ireland defender. “He is a good player in training, it’s just he has not quite shown it in games. That goal will be massive for him. I think he will kick on and show everyone what he has got.”

Transferring training performances to matches has been difficult for Clare to date. “That happens when you are an attacking player and you have not scored in a while,” explained Smith.

“That goal will do him the world of good and boost his confidence. Hopefully he can kick on now and establish himself in the starting line-up.”

Clare’s strike secured a narrow 1-0 win against a Livingston team which beat Hearts 5-0 in December.

“Yes that’s one to forget, thanks for bringing it up,” smiled Smith. “We owed them one. It would have been nice to beat them 5-0 but I will take 1-0 all day long.”

Hearts supporters got their first look at new signing David Vanecek at the weekend and Smith also predicted a bright future for the Czech. “He is massive. With the attributes he has, he is going to be really good in this league.

“I think he will score a lot of goals. Hopefully if my crossing gets a little better I might get a few assists off him. From what he’s shown in training, I think he is going to be a bit hit.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "BARRY ANDERSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859981.1548087267!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859981.1548087267!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Sean Clare celebrates with team-mate David Vanecek after scoring against Livingston","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Sean Clare celebrates with team-mate David Vanecek after scoring against Livingston","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859981.1548087267!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859982.1548087269!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859982.1548087269!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Michael Smith in action for Hearts","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Michael Smith in action for Hearts","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859982.1548087269!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/michael-weir-win-at-motherwell-imperative-for-hibs-1-4859914","id":"1.4859914","articleHeadline": "Michael Weir: Win at Motherwell imperative for Hibs","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548138600000 ,"articleLead": "

Daryl Horgan was spot-on in revealing his first thought on facing Elgin City in the Scottish Cup was not to become the victim of a giantkilling act.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859913.1548083899!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Neil Lennon takes his Hibs side to Fir Park on Wednesday night"} ,"articleBody": "

Obviously, everyone at Easter Road would have been confident of beating a team from League Two but these games are always tricky, the so-called smaller side has nothing to lose and all the pressure is on you.

I can remember a few struggles from my own playing days, most notably against Cowdenbeath at Central Park in 1993. Gordon Hunter looked to have given away a stonewall penalty late on but somehow he got away with it and we managed to hold on for a 0-0 draw. We got them back to Easter Road for the replay a few days later and only won by a goal from Pat McGinlay.

That’s why I’ve always been a great believer when it comes to cup football the only thing that matters is getting into the next round even if it’s a poor performance.

Thankfully, Hibs didn’t have any such problems at the weekend, it was a professional performance with a few goals – and it could have been more – thrown in.

The draw for the fifth round has also been kind, at home to Raith Rovers which is all Neil Lennon and his players could have asked for but, in the meantime, it’s back to league business and trying to push into the top six and beyond.

The goals against Elgin will have helped boost confidence but Motherwell away on Wednesday night is a big game. It will be important to kick off the second half of the season with a win and build from there.

However, the Motherwell players will be hurting from being knocked out of the cup at home by Ross County and will be determined to make amends for that disappointment. Again, though, the result more than the performance is paramount.

Injuries haven’t helped but now experienced players are coming back and it will be up to them to step up to the challenge and hopefully their return will also see a better balance to the team, something I feel has been missing so far this season.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859913.1548083899!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859913.1548083899!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Neil Lennon takes his Hibs side to Fir Park on Wednesday night","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Neil Lennon takes his Hibs side to Fir Park on Wednesday night","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859913.1548083899!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/lower-leagues/leafa-round-up-barca-milton-97-are-on-fire-south-vics-need-extra-time-1-4859898","id":"1.4859898","articleHeadline": "LEAFA round-up: Barca Milton 97 are on fire | South Vics need extra time","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548138653000 ,"articleLead": "

Barca Milton 97 romped their way to the quarter-finals of the RJM Sports East of Scotland Cup with a 4-1 victory over Dunblane Soccer Club.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859897.1548082178!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Barca Milton"} ,"articleBody": "

Barca will meet fellow LEAFA club Edinburgh South Vics in the last eight after the draw was made yesterday morning.

The Championship outfit took the lead following a fine team move, with striker Charlie Adams finding the top corner after a one-two with strike partner Jon Laidlaw.

It was soon 2-0 when Andrew Donaldson’s long throw in wasn’t dealt with by the visiting goalkeeper and midfielder Jason Watson had the simple task of passing the ball into the net.

Dunblane hit back soon after, but Barca restored their two-goal advantage ahead of the half-time whistle, with Watson again finding the net from a Donaldson throw in a carbon copy of his first effort.

The visitors couldn’t deal with the threat posed Donaldson’s throw and that was their downfall once again for the fourth and final goal as the visiting keeper inadvertently put the ball into his own net when attempting to catch the ball.

Elsewhere, Edinburgh South Vics progressed to the quarter finals thanks to Ryan Moore’s extra-time winner after the 90 minutes ended 0-0 against Alva. Sandys crashed out of the East of Scotland Cup after extra-time, losing 6-3 to Pennies AFC.

Meadowbank maintained their five point lead at the top of the Championship with a 4-1 victory at home to bottom club Armadale Thistle – their fourth win in a row.

The hosts romped to a three-goal lead inside 25 minutes as the visitors couldn’t cope with their attacking threat.

Goalkeeper Aaron Griffiths’ punt wasn’t dealt with by the Armadale defence, landing just right for Mark Low, who shot first-time with a left-footed half volley from the edge of the box.

The second goal arrived on 20 minutes, with Paul Martin playing a neat one-two with Low, before the former was brought down by an Armadale defender inside the area. Martin then stepped up to convert the spot-kick.

Martin then set up Ross Stenhouse to tap home for number three after good play down the right side from Aaron Gosman.

Armadale pulled a goal back before the break from a corner-kick, but a comeback was never on the horizon and substitute Euan Bell restored their three-goal advantage with his first touch after getting on the end of Stenhouse’s cross.

Elsewhere, Tranent moved into the semi-finals of the Miller Cup with a 1-0 win over Linlithgow Thistle, with Anton McKillop firing the only goal of the game.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": "SCOTT THOMSON"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859897.1548082178!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859897.1548082178!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Barca Milton","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Barca Milton","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859897.1548082178!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/five-things-hibs-fans-should-know-about-new-signing-stephane-omeonga-1-4860099","id":"1.4860099","articleHeadline": "Five things Hibs fans should know about new signing Stephane Omeonga","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548098950000 ,"articleLead": "

Hibs have completed the loan signing of Belgian midfielder Stephane Omeonga on loan from Genoa. Here’s a bit more about Easter Road’s new boy...

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860097.1548159198!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Stephane Omeonga (right) gets to grips with Internazionale's Croatian international Ivan Perisic. Picture: Getty Images"} ,"articleBody": "

He’s a first-teamer at Genoa

While he isn’t a regular starter, Omeonga has played 25 times for Genoa in Serie A and the Coppa Italia, and prior to that turned out 31 times for Avellino in Serie B. He isn’t another squad player with no hope of ever breaking into the first team; there are high hopes for him at Genoa, hence having a contract until the end of the 2022 seasons.

He’s an all-action midfielder

In his own words, Omeonga doesn’t just sit in front of the back four, he likes to get forward and attack. In his first interview with HibsTV he said: “I like to go box to box... I like to run, to attack, to defend and help everyone.

“The supporters can expect a fighter. Someone who will never give up. Someone who will fight until the end for the team.”

He’s not beyond picking the ball up in a deep area and driving forwards, either pinging the ball out to the flanks or running at opposition defences. He’s direct, has a decent turn of pace and an eye for a pass.

He’s been capped five times by Belgian Under-21s

Omeonga has played five times for Belgium at Under-21 level facing Cyprus, the Netherlands, Hungary, Italy and Romania. He registered an assist in the last match for Johan Walem’s side in mid-Novem,ber last year.

A half-time replacement for David Heynen, Omeonga crossed for Isaac Mbenza to put the Belgians 3-1 up - although Romania scored twice in the dying minutes to snatch a 3-3 draw. 
Omeonga is expected to be part of Belgium’s squad for the UEFA Euro 2019 Under-21 Championships later this year and featuring regularly for Hibs in the second half of the campaign will do his chances no harm.

He’s come up against some of the world’s best players

During his time at Genoa, Omeonga has come up against the likes of Gonzalo Higuain and Frank Kessie of AC Milan; Inter duo Ivan Perisic and Stefan de Vrij; Marek Hamsik and dries Mertens of Napoli and Claudio Marchisio, Blaise Matuidi and Douglas Costa of Juventus. At his first club, Anderlecht Under-19s, he came up against current Arsenal first-teamers Alex Iwobi and Ainsley Maitland-Niles in the UEFA Youth League. Long story short, there surely won’t be much - if anything - in Scottish football that will faze Omeonga.

He’s yet to score a senior goal, but...

Although Omeonga is yet to open his account in front of goal, that could very well change at Hibs, if Neil Lennon’s comments are anything to go by.

Ahead of the move being confirmed, Lennon said: “Tactically, [Stephane] is decent. 
“The thing he doesn’t have at the moments is goals, so maybe that’s an aspect we can add, but we like his all-round game.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4860097.1548159198!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860097.1548159198!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Stephane Omeonga (right) gets to grips with Internazionale's Croatian international Ivan Perisic. Picture: Getty Images","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Stephane Omeonga (right) gets to grips with Internazionale's Croatian international Ivan Perisic. Picture: Getty Images","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4860097.1548159198!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5775052899001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/hibs-australian-duo-prolong-stay-at-asian-cup-with-shoot-out-win-1-4860051","id":"1.4860051","articleHeadline": "Hibs’ Australian duo prolong stay at Asian Cup with shoot-out win","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548092278000 ,"articleLead": "

Hibs will be without Jamie Maclaren and Mark Milligan for Sunday’s trip to face St Mirren in Paisley after Australia squeezed into the quarter-finals of the Asian Cup.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860050.1548099546!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Mark Milligan fires home his penalty"} ,"articleBody": "

The Socceroos, holders of the trophy, needed a penalty shoot-out to beat Uzbekistan after a goalless draw in the United Arab Emirates with skipper Milligan, inset, leading the way as he converted the first of their spot-kicks. Australian eventually won 4-2 in the shoot-out thanks to two tremendous saves from goalkeeper Matty Ryan and will now face either the UAE in the last eight on Friday although they will be without Celtic midfielder Tom Rogic, who will serve a one-match ban after picking up his second yellow card of the tournament.

Maclaren started the match in Al Ain’s Khalifa bin Zayed Stadium but was replaced after 75 minutes by Apostolos Giannou.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4860050.1548099546!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860050.1548099546!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Mark Milligan fires home his penalty","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Mark Milligan fires home his penalty","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4860050.1548099546!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/hibs-confirm-loan-signing-of-genoa-midfielder-stephane-omeonga-1-4860029","id":"1.4860029","articleHeadline": "Hibs confirm loan signing of Genoa midfielder Stephane Omeonga","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548090597000 ,"articleLead": "

Hibs have completed the signing of Genoa midfielder Stephane Omeonga on a loan deal until the end of the season.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860049.1548091564!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Stephane Omeonga has signed a loan deal with Hibs until the end of the season. Picture: Hibernian FC/Hibs TV"} ,"articleBody": "

The 22-year-old, who took in the Easter Road side’s 4-0 win over Elgin City in the William Hill Scottish Cup on Saturday, is available for selection for Wednesday night’s Ladbrokes Premiership match away to Motherwell.

With 21 appearances for the Serie A side under his belt, the midfielder arrives in the Capital with what head coach Neil Lennon hailed as a “great pedigree”.

Omeonga, capped five times by Belgium at Under-21 level, told Hibs’ official website: “I’ve known of the interest for about a month and the club pushed hard to get me, which made a real impression.

“I also received a presentation that went into real detail about what I could expect and what Hibs expects of me. I’ve never seen that kind of thing before.

“So, from that and what I’ve seen for myself, I think I will really enjoy playing here and suit the way the team likes to play.

“I like to do my talking on the pitch but I would say to the supporters that I am someone who likes to go box to box, to run hard and tackle.

“I am all about helping the team. I’ll give everything I have to do that.

“Everyone made me feel so welcome from the second I arrived at Easter Road before Saturday’s game and now I’m just looking forward to getting started.”

Lennon added: “Stephane comes to us with great pedigree, having played a good number of games in Serie A for someone of his age.

“We’ve watched a lot of him and we think he can add a lot to the group in terms of his energy, dynamism and willingness to go box to box.

“He’s not scared to put a foot in to try and win the ball back. We think he’ll complement those around him and give us a different kind of option. We’re all happy to have him here.”

Omeonga has played 19 times for Genoa since arriving from Avellino in 2017. Prior to that, he had spent two years with Anderlecht in his homeland.

He will wear the number 40 shirt for Hibs.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4860049.1548091564!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4860049.1548091564!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Stephane Omeonga has signed a loan deal with Hibs until the end of the season. Picture: Hibernian FC/Hibs TV","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Stephane Omeonga has signed a loan deal with Hibs until the end of the season. Picture: Hibernian FC/Hibs TV","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4860049.1548091564!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/where-hearts-and-hibs-place-in-the-away-table-with-a-surprising-leader-1-4859932","id":"1.4859932","articleHeadline": "Where Hearts and Hibs place in the away table with a surprising leader","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548084476790 ,"articleLead": "Hearts and Hibs have had mixed fortunes away from home this season.","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859919.1548084480!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts and Hibs have had mixed fortunes on the road this season."} ,"articleBody": "

Neil Lennon's men have won three times on the road, all against the bottom three sides, while the Tynecastle tasted success in their first three away fixtures. The team with the best away record is somewhat surprising. Click through the pages to find out how well each side have performed.

" ,"byline": {"email": "joel.sked@JPress.co.uk" ,"author": "Joel Sked"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859919.1548084480!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859919.1548084480!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hearts and Hibs have had mixed fortunes on the road this season.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hearts and Hibs have had mixed fortunes on the road this season.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859919.1548084480!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859920.1548084482!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859920.1548084482!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "10 games","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "10 games","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859920.1548084482!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859921.1548084483!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859921.1548084483!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "10 games","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "10 games","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859921.1548084483!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859922.1548084488!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859922.1548084488!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "10 games","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "10 games","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859922.1548084488!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859923.1548084494!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859923.1548084494!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "10 games","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "10 games","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859923.1548084494!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859924.1548084497!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859924.1548084497!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "11 games","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "11 games","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859924.1548084497!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859925.1548084499!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859925.1548084499!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "11 games","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "11 games","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859925.1548084499!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859926.1548084502!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859926.1548084502!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "10 games","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "10 games","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859926.1548084502!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859927.1548084506!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859927.1548084506!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "11 games","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "11 games","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859927.1548084506!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859928.1548084508!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859928.1548084508!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "10 games","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "10 games","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859928.1548084508!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859929.1548084511!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859929.1548084511!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "11 games","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "11 games","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859929.1548084511!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859930.1548084513!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859930.1548084513!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "10 games","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "10 games","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859930.1548084513!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} , {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859931.1548084516!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859931.1548084516!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "10 games","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "10 games","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859931.1548084516!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-youngster-bartlomiej-gajda-on-trial-with-polish-side-gks-jastrzebie-1-4859763","id":"1.4859763","articleHeadline": "Hearts youngster Bartlomiej Gajda on trial with Polish side GKS Jastrzebie","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548075378000 ,"articleLead": "

Hearts youngster Bartlomiej Gajda has gone on trial with GKS Jastrzebie.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859761.1548075373!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Bartlomiej Gajda (left) takes part in a benefit match between a Falkirk & Hearts XI and Rangers for former player David Hagen. Picture: Michael Gillen"} ,"articleBody": "

The Polish 19-year-old, who has made just one competitive appearance for the Jambos in a 3-1 loss to St Mirren in the Irn-Bru Cup in 2017, hasn’t managed to force his way into Craig Levein’s first-team plans since joining in August 2017 from Gornik Zabrze in his homeland after impressing during a trial period.

The central defender’s contract at Tynecastle is due to run out in August 2020 but it looks as though Gajda - capped at Under-15, Under-16, Under-17 and Under-18 level for Poland - could be on his way back to Poland if his trial at Jastrzebie is successful.

Gajda has also spent time with Polish second-tier side Podbeskidzie Bielsko-Biała, and could line up against his former club if a deal is struck.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859761.1548075373!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859761.1548075373!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Bartlomiej Gajda (left) takes part in a benefit match between a Falkirk & Hearts XI and Rangers for former player David Hagen. Picture: Michael Gillen","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Bartlomiej Gajda (left) takes part in a benefit match between a Falkirk & Hearts XI and Rangers for former player David Hagen. Picture: Michael Gillen","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859761.1548075373!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5785066117001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/ex-hearts-defender-reveals-vladimir-romanov-s-bizarre-fascination-with-ginger-hair-1-4859744","id":"1.4859744","articleHeadline": "Ex-Hearts defender reveals Vladimir Romanov's bizarre fascination with ginger hair","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548073310449 ,"articleLead": "

Former Hearts full-back Jason Thomson has revealed that the club's former owner Vladimir Romanov had an unusual fascination with people with ginger hair.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859743.1548073590!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jason Thomson revealed Vladimir Romanov's unusual take on people with ginger hair."} ,"articleBody": "

The Arbroath defender came through the Hearts academy and was on the club's books until 2012, making more than 40 appearances.

In an interview with the Scottish lower league podcast Lower Ramblings, the 31-year-old recalled weird moment during a trip to Lithuania. where Romanov lived.

The ex-banker, who was involved with the club between 2004 and 2013, addressed the team via a translator where he gave his unique take on people with ginger hair.

\"We went to Lithuania,\" said Thomson. \"Lovely place we went to, all paid for and got a few nights out which was really good.

\"We were having a talk one day and he's speaking through his translator and you just hear him in his Russian and hear 'ginger' so I took notice.

\"He was still speaking through his translator: 'Yes, we had this ginger boy at school and he used to get bullied'.

\"Everyone focused on me and I was still quite young at the time so thought 'what's going on here?' He said: 'Everyone should be friends with the ginger guy'.\"

Thomson left Hearts permanently for Raith Rovers and is now a key part of Arbroath's ascension to the top of League One.

" ,"byline": {"email": "joel.sked@JPress.co.uk" ,"author": "Joel Sked"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859743.1548073590!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859743.1548073590!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Jason Thomson revealed Vladimir Romanov's unusual take on people with ginger hair.","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jason Thomson revealed Vladimir Romanov's unusual take on people with ginger hair.","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859743.1548073590!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/scottish-football-live-celtic-defender-nears-exit-ex-rangers-midfielder-unlikely-to-return-rodgers-eyes-mikael-lustig-replacement-1-4859672","id":"1.4859672","articleHeadline": "Scottish Football Live: Celtic defender nears exit | Ex-Rangers midfielder unlikely to return | Rodgers eyes Mikael Lustig replacement","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548069115788 ,"articleLead": "

Follow The Scotsman’s daily blog as we keep you updated with all the latest news, views, rumours and much more from around Scottish football.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859670.1548069285!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Is Mikael Lustig set to be replaced by Fernando Fonseca?"} ,"articleBody": "

Refresh for live updates.

" ,"byline": {"email": "joel.sked@JPress.co.uk" ,"author": "Joel Sked"} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859670.1548069285!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859670.1548069285!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Is Mikael Lustig set to be replaced by Fernando Fonseca?","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Is Mikael Lustig set to be replaced by Fernando Fonseca?","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859670.1548069285!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"3000000001751595"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hearts/hearts-reaction-jon-daly-on-sean-clare-and-drawing-auchinleck-talbot-1-4859493","id":"1.4859493","articleHeadline": "Hearts reaction: Jon Daly on Sean Clare and drawing Auchinleck Talbot","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548052200000 ,"articleLead": "

Sean Clare waited four months for some jubilation in a maroon shirt. When Hearts needed a moment of quality, he produced it to nudge them into the Scottish Cup fifth round. Now comes a home tie against the giant-killing juniors of Auchinleck Talbot – who were beaten by Hearts en route to their famous 2012 Scottish Cup final win against Hibs.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859492.1548069644!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jon Daly"} ,"articleBody": "

Yesterday’s sublime finish from new signing David Vanecek’s lay-off showed Hearts supporters Clare’s true capabilities as he converted the winning goal against Livingston. He arrived in September as a free agent after leaving Sheffield Wednesday but has taken time to find fitness and form in Scotland. Thanks to him, one of the Edinburgh club’s most vexing opponents this season were dispensed with in a tense and competitive encounter at Tynecastle Park.

Nobody needed reminding that Livingston had beaten Hearts 5-0 just a few weeks previously in a league fixture in West Lothian. Clare’s controlled effort early in the second half represented revenge. “We’re just happy to get through. Cup games are always just about winning,” admitted the Hearts coach Jon Daly afterwards.

“The task before the game was to make sure we were in the hat, to give ourselves a chance of getting one step closer to a cup final. Livingston keep you honest. They make you fight for 90-plus minutes and they’re a credit to themselves.

“They made us work hard. I don’t think we helped ourselves in the first half, we didn’t move the ball quickly enough. Our passing wasn’t great, our decision-making was poor, but in the second half we were a bit better.

“In the last five to ten minutes tactics go out of the window. They start throwing bodies forward and we needed to defend well, which I thought we did. We’re just very pleased to be in the hat.”

Clare would have felt relieved at full-time, not to mention happy with his important contribution. “I don’t think the jury’s out in terms of ourselves, we believe in him and know the qualities he has,” insisted Daly. “He’s a young player and he is still learning the game.

“Does he need to do more at times? Yes he does, but he is still getting used to Scottish football and the club. I think it’s important we stick by him and give us opportunities so he can repay us like this.”

It is merely coincidence that the draw for the next round of the Scottish Cup, made seconds after the final whistle at Tynecastle, pits Hearts against Auchinleck. They knocked Ayrshire neighbours Ayr United out of the tournament on Saturday with the greatest result in their history.

They also lost 1-0 in Gorgie in January 2012, when Gordon Smith’s late winner started Hearts’ path to a 5-1 victory in the final at Hampden Park. “It’s a home tie, which you always want. They’re the lowest ranked team in the competition so it’s a good draw and we’re happy,” said Daly.

“However, we need to go and beat them. We can’t just think we’re through to the next round because football is not played on paper, it’s played on grass. We need to make sure we turn up and not give them any hope. I know the year we won the cup we beat them so hopefully that’s an omen. But we won’t look too much into that.”

The Livingston manager Gary Holt declared himself satisfied with his players’ endeavour at a difficult venue. “I thought we stood up to the test well and competed well but we didn’t have the quality in the final third - taking care of the final pass and shooting on target,” he said.

“We didn’t get a lucky break. Alan [Lithgow] had one shot and Ryan [Hardie] had a header from a corner. Maybe we lost a bit of sharpness after three weeks off. Sometimes you don’t get what you deserve in football I think it was tough on the boys to come away with nothing. I don’t think there was too much in the game.”

Holt complimented Clare on the quality of his first-time conversion. “It was a good finish. I didn’t think the boy was going to hit it and Liam Kelly didn’t think so either. In truth, I don’t think Liam would have got to it anyway because it was a really good finish.

“I’m disappointed we lost the ball in our half and there are areas we want to improve, but it was a good strike for his first goal for the club. That wee five or ten minute spell after half-time was maybe our worst in the game and you can’t afford that at this level.

“I’m delighted how the players performed and worked. It was a good cup-tie, not one where teams went through the motions. Both sides tried to win it and on another day we could have had luck.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859492.1548069644!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859492.1548069644!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Jon Daly","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Jon Daly","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859492.1548069644!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ {"video": {"brightcoveId":"5785575081001"} } ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/hibs/daryl-horgan-looks-to-key-league-games-after-hibs-sweep-aside-elgin-in-cup-1-4859485","id":"1.4859485","articleHeadline": "Daryl Horgan looks to key league games after Hibs sweep aside Elgin in cup","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548052200000 ,"articleLead": "

Daryl Horgan had just one thought as he lined up to face League Two Elgin City when Hibs opened their latest assault on the Scottish Cup – not to be the victims of a giant-killing.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859484.1548005567!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hibs' Daryl Horgan celebrates after scoring to make it 4-0"} ,"articleBody": "

Any such worries, however, proved totally unfounded as Neil Lennon’s players cruised to an easy victory, the match statistics simply underlining the gulf between them and a team sitting 31 places below them in Scottish football’s pecking order.

Two thirds of possession, an astonishing 33 shots at goal, 14 of which were on target but only four of which found the back of Elgin goalkeeper Thomas McHale’s net, were figures which amplified the dominance the Premiership side enjoyed.

Indeed, Lennon’s assistant head coach Garry Parker was not being unreasonable when suggesting the margin of victory should have been even greater. Certainly there should have been more goals, Flo Kamberi seeing another penalty saved, for instance, but an early strike from the Swiss hitman, two from Horgan and a second spot-kick expertly tucked away by Stevie Mallan, were more than enough to ensure Hibs achieved their objective – to be in the draw for the fifth round.

As thoughts turned to a return to Premiership action with away games against Motherwell and St Mirren to come this week as the Capital club seek to drive themselves back into the top half of the table, Republic of Ireland internationalist Horgan said: “This was a good one for us to ease into but Wednesday and then Saturday are just as important for getting the season going. That is the priority now, but this was our focus all week. It is the cup and you don’t want to be the team that is first on Sportscene because Hibs have been put out in the big shock result.

“That was the last thing any of us wanted and thankfully that’s not what happened. We played well and we were well worth the win. It was a big step up for Elgin and I thought that at times they played some nice stuff and had some good players and we respected them – and thankfully we did.

“But now that’s done we can look forward to Wednesday and hopefully get the win and we can worry about the next game after that.”

Hibs, effectively, had the game won by half-time, Ryan Gauld displaying early signs that the loanee from Sporting Lisbon will be a key figure over the second half of the season, the former Dundee United a pivotal influence in the middle of the park with his movement, touch and vision.

And it was the 23-year-old who unlocked the visiting defence, spotting Kamberi’s run and delivering an inch-perfect pass into his path, allowing his team-mate to round McHale and stroke the ball home from a tight-ish angle.

Horgan got the first of his two goals with a rare header, taking a sore one from McHale in the process, not that he was complaining. “It was just my second ever with my head. You could say they are rare enough, but I won’t complain as long as they go in.

“The goalkeeper left one on me, but that’s his job and I don’t blame him at all. No harm done.”

Having seen his previous spot-kick saved by Livingston goalkeeper Liam Kelly, Kamberi had to look on again as McHale threw himself to his right to push away his effort from 12 yards after Steven Whittaker’s legs had been whipped from underneath him by Rubin Omar.

Little surprise then when Mallan stepped up when referee Nick Walsh pointed to the spot again, Kamberi having been tripped by Brain Cameron on the stroke of half-time, the midfielder showing his team-mate how it should be done.

When Horgan claimed his second of the game just nine minutes after the interval, tapping home a Whittaker cross, Elgin boss Gavin Price later admitted he feared the worst but while happy at the way his players stuck to their task and so prevented what might have been a demoralising defeat. However, even he would have conceded hat could have been the case but for some 
profligate finishing again from Hibs

And Horgan added: “This was a good result, we’re happy to be in the next round of the cup, but we have to keep that going. We want to be in there [top six], that’s where everyone wants to be.

“We all want to be fighting for European places and playing our best come the end of the season. But we have to improve if we want to do that. We are a bit out of if just now so we are going to have to be much, much better than we have been.

“I have to improve myself, that’s key for all of us.

“We are sitting eighth in the league and that’s not good enough. We want to get into the top six and then push on into the top four and we want to go far in the cup as well.”

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859484.1548005567!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859484.1548005567!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Hibs' Daryl Horgan celebrates after scoring to make it 4-0","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Hibs' Daryl Horgan celebrates after scoring to make it 4-0","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859484.1548005567!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/edinburgh-city/edinburgh-city-boss-tells-players-to-show-right-stuff-after-losing-lead-in-league-two-1-4859479","id":"1.4859479","articleHeadline": "Edinburgh City boss tells players to show right stuff after losing lead in League Two","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548052200000 ,"articleLead": "

Edinburgh City boss James McDonaugh has challenged his players to show “what they are made of” after Annan Athletic came from a goal down to earn a well-deserved 2-1 victory.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859478.1548005445!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Scott Shepherd of Edinburgh City is surrounded by Annan Athletic players"} ,"articleBody": "

Blair Henderson notched his 29th goal of the season from the penalty spot five minutes before the interval to give the Citizens the advantage. However, the striker’s glee soon turned to despair when, after David Wilson had restored parity with a quite magnificent strike, Henderson headed beyond his goalkeeper Calum Antell to hand the Borderers all three points despite the best efforts of captain Craig Thomson.

Peterhead’s 2-0 success over Berwick Rangers knocked City off the top of League Two on goal difference. The Balmoor club have also played a game fewer.

“We deserved nothing from the game, it’s as simple as that,” McDonaugh said. “I thought we were alright in the first half and maybe shaded it but we didn’t start the second half well. I thought the team that won the game deserved to win the game. Their equaliser was a brilliant hit but we never got started. I’d be as well as not saying anything at half-time. We didn’t show enough quality in the second half. I think there was a reaction but it just wasn’t a very good one.

“Annan are a strong side when you look at their squad. These games are never easy and I know we had that fantastic run but it never meant those matches were easy. It’s fine margins. Our three home defeats this season have been similar. We have to move on from this. We’ve been knocked off the top before and showed a good reaction so let’s see what we’re made of.”

Henderson rattled the woodwork inside five minutes as he was first to Thomson’s cross before visiting goalkeeper Alex Mitchell expertly tipped over Conrad Balatoni’s goal-bound header.

Aidan Smith had a couple of half chances for the visitors but Antell was well placed to deal with anything that came his way in what was a low-key opening half hour.

City, however, grabbed the initiative five minutes before the break after Scott Shepherd had skipped clear of the defence and into the box. The former Falkirk striker was upended by a clumsy challenge from substitute Peter Watson and Henderson slotted away the resulting spot-kick.

But fourth-placed Annan sprung a shock little more than 60 seconds after the restart, the home side failing to close down Wilson, whose swerving half volley nestled into the far corner of the net from 20 yards.

The hosts struggled to conjure up any kind of response, although Mitchell did fumble a cross into the path of Henderson, who had already turned his back on play and the chance was gone.

Annan delivered a sucker punch with 18 minutes remaining as former Kilmarnock winger Chris Johnston’s corner was inadvertently headed beyond team-mate Antell from ten yards by City’s talisman and the assistant referee on the far side ruled the ball to have crossed the line for what proved to be the winner.

“We didn’t play well at all,” a dejected Henderson said afterwards. “It’s just one of these things their second goal. There were a lot of bodies in the box and I couldn’t really see the ball. I’ve jumped for it and it has hit me and it’s gone in. It’s disappointing.

“But there have been games where we’ve played well and haven’t won this season, take Berwick a couple of weeks ago when we were 2-0 up and drew 2-2. I thought we should have taken the three points there but Annan definitely deserved to win.”

Edinburgh City: Antell, Thomson, McIntyre, Black, Balatoni, Laird, B Henderson, Taylor (Breen 80), Shepherd (Smith 76), L Henderson, Galbraith (Watson 65). Subs: Morton, Rodger, Donaldson, Hall.

Annan Athletic: Mitchell, Hooper, Creaney, Wilson, Sonkur (Watson 16), Swinglehurst, Moxon, Sinnamon, Smith, Muir, Johnston. Subs: McAdams, Ferguson, Wallace, Strapp, Murphy.

Referee: Gavin Duncan.

Attendance: 285.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859478.1548005445!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859478.1548005445!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Scott Shepherd of Edinburgh City is surrounded by Annan Athletic players","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Scott Shepherd of Edinburgh City is surrounded by Annan Athletic players","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859478.1548005445!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/lower-leagues/hairdryer-treatment-works-as-broxburn-leave-it-late-against-edinburgh-united-1-4859477","id":"1.4859477","articleHeadline": "Hairdryer treatment works as Broxburn leave it late against Edinburgh United","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548052200000 ,"articleLead": "

Returning Broxburn Athletic striker Zander Miller delivered a late second-half double to maintain the Albyn Park men’s three-point lead at the top of East of Scotland Conference C.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859476.1548005384!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Edinburgh United's Sean Guiney tries to tackle Broxburn's Cammie Ross"} ,"articleBody": "

Miller, on his first start back after travelling across South America for six weeks with girlfriend Karla, pounced twice late on to help defeat dinburgh United 3-1, the Capital team certainly deserving something out of a match which could have gone either way.

Miller revealed stand-in boss Steven Hislop had some choice words to say at half-time after James Redpath’s first-half strike had given Edinburgh the lead. “We had to grind it out,” said Miller. “They played quite well and they were hard to break down. We came in at half-time and got an absolute rollocking so I think we picked it up in the second half.

“He [Hislop] went through everybody – we knew ourselves we weren’t good enough – but after his comments it was a good boot up the bum for us.

“They were well organised and we weren’t moving the ball fast enough. It could easily have gone either way; they could have got a goal just before we scored. But once we got our goal, we were on top.”

Assistant boss Hislop felt his team didn’t deserve to come away with three points.

“I don’t think we deserved it. I think they wanted it more in the first half; they were much more hungrier and aggressive. We told them they would be in their faces because we are the league leaders.

“We’ve got a bad habit of playing for 45 minutes whether it be the first half or the second half and there is only so many times you can go behind and win games. They got the deserved hairdryer treatment at half-time; I asked them to show character and they showed it.

“We made a wee tactical change just towards the end and it paid off. We put a young boy [Sol Duffy] up front who has got great hunger. He’s one of these guys who I don’t think he knows what he’s doing, so it’s hard for their defenders to know what he’s doing. He came on and never stood still and he set up both goals.

“If you want to win leagues you have to grind results out but you have to do it in a manner which isn’t going to cause you trouble. It’s not about beating Linlithgow, it’s about Broxburn. If we win it, it will be sweet no matter who finishes second.”

Third bottom Edinburgh were not expected to take anything from this match, but there was no doubt they were the better side in the opening half, with Redpath finding the top corner from just inside the area after 25 minutes from Sean Guiney’s free-kick.

Miller should have levelled just before the interval but he somehow headed over the bar from eight yards out after Ross Nimmo found him.

United striker Daniel McKinley was inches away from doubling the home side’s lead early in the second half, with his strike across goal just drifting past Conor Wallace’s right-hand post. They would pay for that miss as Gordon Donaldson volleyed in from close range to level just a minute later.

Miller put the visitors ahead with five minutes remaining as he slotted into the bottom corner and then he secured the points when he found the net via the inside of the post.

Edinburgh boss Ian Flynn was gutted not to take anything out of the match.

“I’m really disappointed. For it to happen they had to have a bad day and we had to have a good day, and for 85 minutes I think that was happening. It’s sore but that’s why they are top of the league.

“They couldn’t handle our pace up front, we were always a threat and I was surprised how many chances we created.”

Edinburgh United: Walker, Kerr, Murray (Grieve), Spalding, Guiney, Conlon, McKinlay, Autiemma, Swanney (Robertson), Redpath, Ritchie.

Broxburn Athletic: Wallace, Gillen (McGill), Donaldson, Purves, Townsley, Scott, Nimmo, Locke (Linton), Ross, Gibson (Duffy), Miller.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859476.1548005384!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859476.1548005384!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Edinburgh United's Sean Guiney tries to tackle Broxburn's Cammie Ross","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Edinburgh United's Sean Guiney tries to tackle Broxburn's Cammie Ross","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859476.1548005384!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} , {"article": {"url":"https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/sport/football/lower-leagues/east-of-scotland-round-up-mathu-kinhg-hat-trick-for-musselburgh-tommy-coyne-cashes-in-for-linlithgow-1-4859481","id":"1.4859481","articleHeadline": "East of Scotland round-up: Mathu Kinhg hat-trick for Musselburgh | Tommy Coyne cashes in for Linlithgow","commentCount":0,"publishedDate":1548052200000 ,"articleLead": "

A hat-trick from striker Mathu King on his return from injury helped Musselburgh beat Leith 5-1 at Peffermill, a result which puts Musselburgh second in East of Scotland Conference A behind leaders Penicuik. Michael Moffat grabbed a brace to complete the scoring.

","articleThumbnail": {"thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859480.1548005491!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Mathu King"} ,"articleBody": "

Linlithgow were made to work to beat a spirited Heriot-Watt 3–0 and maintain their challenge for the Conference C title. Owen Ronald gave them the lead before the break with Tommy Coyne scoring another double to take him to top scorer in League goals and on target for his 40 this season. Linlithgow boss Mark Bradley said: “Heriot-Watt have played us before and they are learning our style and they made it difficult for us. However, we have a goal machine in Tommy Coyne and as long as he keeps banging in the goals we will be in contention.”

Bonnyrigg benefited despite not playing at all in Conference C as Bo’ness beat second-placed Dundonald 3–1. Allan McKenzie gave them an interval lead and Marty Wright then netted twice against a ten-man Fife side.

A rapidly improving Arniston were at Tweedmouth and came back up the road with an impressive 5–3 win thanks to four goals from Laurie Jones and a single from Andy Fleming. Preston drew 1-1 at home to Stirling University while Dalkeith lost 3-1 at home to an improving Tynecastle.

Newtongrange Star may be in disarray off the pitch as manager Steve McLeish resigned after two and a half years in charge, but at Dunbar on Saturday the players responded as they ran out 3-0 winners in Conference A.

Meanwhile, a late goal from substitute Stephen McDonald allowed Spartans to beat Tranent 3–2 in the Football Nation Qualifying Cup and make the semi-finals on a bitterly cold night last Friday.

The draw for the last four was made after the Kelty v Camelon game on Saturday. Spartans will play Penicuik or Stirling University, and Kelty face Peebles or Jeanfield or Bonnyrigg at a date to be confirmed.

" ,"byline": {"email": "" ,"author": ""} ,"topImages": [ {"image": {"url":"/webimage/1.4859480.1548005491!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_600/image.jpg","thumbnailUrl":"/webimage/1.4859480.1548005491!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_170/image.jpg","alt": "Mathu King","width":600,"height":315,"thumbnailWidth":170,"thumbnailHeight":"auto","imageAlt": "Mathu King","landscapeurl":"/webimage/1.4859480.1548005491!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_595/image.jpg","landscapewidth":595,"landscapeheight":398}} ] ,"bodyImages": [ ] ,"polls":[ ] ,"videos":[ ] ,"imageGallerys":[ ] ,"externalLinks": [ ] ,"relatedList":{"count":0,"list":[ ]} }} ]}}} ]}