Harry Clarke on the verge of Hibs move with Arsenal defender lined up for loan deal
Harry Clarke is set to be Hibs’ first signing of the January transfer window, with the Arsenal defender on the cusp of sealing a loan move to the Capital.
The 20-year-old’s parent club triggered a recall clause in the 20-year-old’s temporary contract with Ross County amid talk of an imminent move to Easter Road, and Clarke is due to undergo a medical on Tuesday ahead of a loan switch to the Edinburgh side.
Hibs remain in talks with the Gunners over the finer details of the proposed switch but the Evening News understands an agreement isn’t too far away from completion.
Defensive reinforcements have been high on Hibs’ list of priorities since last summer and although Nathan Wood arrived on loan from Middlesbrough the England Under-20 internationalist played just once and returned to Boro in December, leaving the side short on options at centre-back.
Left-back Lewis Stevenson was deployed as an auxiliary central defender in the Boxing Day victory over Dundee United at Tannadice but with Ryan Porteous banned for three games this month and Paul McGinn potentially suspended for some games depending on the outcome of the Scottish FA hearing into comments he made in the aftermath of the Premier Sports Cup final, Maloney could be short on bodies in his backline once the season resumes.
Clarke can operate at centre-back or right-back and impressed for the Staggies in his 17 games, scoring three times and assisting two more, and County boss Malky Mackay paid tribute to the youngster at the weekend, saying: “Although we are disappointed to be losing Harry, I would like to thank him for his contribution in the last six months and I think he has become an even more rounded player in that time.
“I hope he feels his time spent here in Dingwall has been enjoyable and we would like to wish him well in his career going forward.”
Meanwhile, Dylan Tait has returned to Hibs from his loan spell with Raith Rovers after two goals and four assists in 29 games and will join the Easter Road first-team squad.
Speaking on Monday, Maloney said: “I’ve spoken with the Raith manager who spoke very highly about Dylan.
“He’s a young player with potential and I’m looking forward to working with him."