5 Scottish Premiership players on expiring deals Hibs could look to sign

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With players on expiring contracts free to talk to clubs, Joel Sked looks at players from the Scottish Premiership Hibs could target.

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Craig Halkett has impressed for Livingston. Picture: SNS/Ross Parker

Craig Halkett has impressed for Livingston. Picture: SNS/Ross Parker

Neil Lennon and Hibs proved how a fine transfer window can be transformative last January with the triple signing of Scott Allan, Florian Kamberi and Jamie Maclaren.

Fans will be hoping the club are able to do similar this year, but if not this month then in the summer where more planning can be done with a host of interesting players out of contract and available on a free.

Here are five players who could prove to be astute additions:

Scott Allan - Celtic

Scott Allan would be welcomed back at Easter Road. Picture: SNS/Ross Parker

Scott Allan would be welcomed back at Easter Road. Picture: SNS/Ross Parker

It is the one name on the out of contract list which will stand out more than any other for Hibs fans. Ideally, for supporters, his arrival from Celtic will come in January and provide a similar influence as he did 12 months ago, helping the side qualify for Europe.

There is something alluring about Easter Road for the midfielder and his playmaking talents. Pulling on the Hibs shirt brings out the best in a player who should have a lot more top-flight games to his name than he does.

Allan needs a club where he can settle, put down roots and play regularly. Hibs require a creative midfield presence who will provide the ammo for their strikers. It is a move which makes sense for all parties.

An alternative could be David Turnbull from Motherwell. The 19-year-old is another creative midfielder who has had a positive impact on the Steelmen’s season and offers an abundance of promise

Craig Halkett - Livingston

The Livingston captain will be a player in demand. An important presence in the West Lothian’s side fine season, he is the archetypal Scottish centre-back, defending first and foremost.

Released by Rangers in 2016, the 23-year-old dropped to the League One but built his career and after back-to-back promotions is starring in the Premiership.

With rumours linking Efe Ambrose with a move away and Darren McGregor turning 34 at the start of next season an additional centre-back would be a shrewd move.

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Ryan Hardie - Livingston (on loan from Rangers)

It has been a peculiar season in front of goal for Hibs. They have hit six on three occasions and scored at least three a further five times. However, in their last 12 league outings they have found the back of the net just nine times.

There was understandable delight at the re-signing of Jamie Maclaren and Florian Kamberi in the summer, but the duo have not been able to rekindle the form which made Hibs so impressive in the second half of last campaign. Back-ups Oli Shaw and Lewis Allan have not be able to fill the void either.

Hardie has taken to the Premiership very well. Ex-Hibs boss John Hughes may have had his doubts about the player but he has proven himself at Livingston. Having missed the start of the season, he is averaging a goal every 86 minutes.

A busy striker, the 21-year-old stretches defences and is a fine finisher.

Chris Cadden - Motherwell

Hibs were always going to find it difficult to replace John McGinn. There was not a player which the club could afford that possessed his wide range of qualities. The one key attribute which the team has missed in the midfield is McGinn’s ability to get the team from A to B with his dynamism and driving runs.

It is something which Cadden can bring to the Hibs midfield. The 22-year-old has rarely been played in his strongest position at Motherwell in the last 12-18 months, that of a No.8, a box-to-box midfielder, the driving force.

Cadden has been moved around too much for his own personal and positional development. He has the qualities to blow past opponents with his running power and control, while providing a goal threat in the final third if is afforded that freedom.

Cammy Kerr - Dundee

Hibs have been at their best this season with David Gray at right-back. The main issue being that the 2016 Scottish Cup goalscoring hero has been missing too often. Hibs’ drastic drop in form coincided with a long lay-off for the 30-year-old.

Gray had hit five goals, and put in a number of influential performances, before he sustained a knee injury in a 6-0 win over Hamilton which kept him out for ten games. What he has shown is that he still has plenty to offer in terms of quality, although not perhaps quantity in terms of games.

Enter Cammy Kerr. The Dundee full-back is one of the Dens Park side’s most talented players. However, one which could do with a change of scenery.

The 23-year-old is a buccaneering right-back, robust, combative and quick. He is a player who may need a bit of refinement but he could be developed into a long-term answer to the club’s right-back position, learning under Gray, while he is someone who has the qualities to play as a wing-back if required.

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