HIBS star Gary Deegan has undergone surgery on a broken jaw after being attacked in the city centre during a night out with teammates.
The 25-yearold Irishman was confronted and punched in the face by a man near the Hard Rock Cafe in George Street.
Deegan, who signed for the Easter Road club this summer, was taken to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary for treatment following the incident at around 3am on Sunday.
The midfielder had earlier been in the nearby Le Monde nightclub celebrating his team’s 3-0 win over Dundee – which briefly put them top of the SPL – with players including captain James McPake and Leigh Griffiths.
Police said that the suspect fled after attacking Deegan, who was then helped from the area by a number of teammates.
An ambulance was called by members of the public who witnessed the assault, and paramedics found the injured player on Rose Street.
A Hibs spokesman said: “Gary underwent surgery yesterday. It is not clear at this stage how long he will be out for but it will be for a number of weeks. As far as we’re concerned this was an unprovoked attack. The police are investigating and they are the proper authority to deal with it.”
The suspect is described as white, over 6ft tall, between 20 and 25 years old with a slim build and short fair hair spiked at the front. He was wearing a checked shirt, dark skinny jeans and dark shoes.
Officers believe he was with another man who was similar in age, but shorter and wearing a T-shirt with light-coloured stripes, blue jeans and white trainers.
Police today urged witnesses to come forward.
Detective Constable Graham McIlwraith said: “Given the time at which this incident took place, there were potentially a number of people leaving the various establishments in George Street who may have seen something suspicious. Anyone who witnessed the assault or who can help identify the male responsible is asked to contact police immediately.”
Hibs signed Deegan from Coventry City in August. Born in Dublin, he previously worked with Hibs manager Pat Fenlon when both were at Irish side Bohemians.