Former Hibs captain advises Josh Doig to stay at Easter Road and improve

Former Hibs left-back prodigy Ian Murray believes hot prospect Josh Doig should remain at Easter Road and improve as a player before moving on.

By Craig Fowler
Friday, 12th November 2021, 7:00 am
Ian Murray came through the ranks at Hibs and made 296 appearances for the club. Picture: SNS
Ian Murray came through the ranks at Hibs and made 296 appearances for the club. Picture: SNS

Doig has been the subject of speculation after an excellent debut campaign in 2020/21. He made his debut in the opening day win over Kilmarnock, quickly established himself as a first-choice pick and ultimately helped the club to three appearances at the national stadium in cup competitions before scooping the Scottish Football Writers' Association Young Player of the Year award.

Murray, who earned rave reviews as a youngster at Hibs before leaving for Rangers in 2005, knows a big-money move is in the offing for the player, but advised the 19-year-old to stick around in the capital a little while longer so as to benefit his current club, his future employers and himself.

“I’m maybe slightly biased and a bit old school now, but I do believe you need to play a lot of games and Josh is doing that right now,” said the current Airdrieonians manager.

Sign up to our Hibs football newsletter

Hibs left-back Josh Doig has been the subject of speculation surrounding his future. Picture: SNS

“I know he was linked with Watford and other teams in the summer. That can really turn a young player’s head.

"I’m of the mantra now that too many young Scottish players are being taken away from their clubs too quickly.

“It’s not going to help them because is Josh Doig ready for the Premier League now? I’m not so sure. But he’s a very good young footballer. He’ll play football at Hibs and his big move will come, I’ve no doubt about it.”

Hibs’ resolve will once again be tested in the upcoming January transfer window. It looked almost certain Doig was going to move on last summer when he was omitted from a matchday squad with Watford seemingly ready to seal a deal, but the player stayed in manager Jack Ross’ squad.

“I guess I was a little bit surprised when you see the money involved,” admitted Murray. “They were talking £3-3.5 million. That might not be a lot of money for Watford but it sure is for a club like Hibs.

“It’s also huge, life-changing money for the player as well so it must’ve been extremely hard for Jack to manage to keep Josh’s focus. Although, while I don’t know Josh, from what I’ve heard he’s a really down-to-earth and focused guy.”

Once touted as a future Scotland captain, injuries ultimately limited Murray to just six international caps at international level. So how does he rate the chances of the next highly-touted left-back to come out of Hibs going on to beat his total?

“Oh that’s a tough one! It’s hard for Josh because he’s got plenty of competition. No disrespect to Gary Naysmith, who was an excellent left-back during my time, but we’ve now got Kieran Tierney and Andrew Robertson playing there for clubs at the top end of the English Premier League. One of them is arguably at the best club.

“I’m just going to be humble and say he’ll get more than six. It’s not that hard, is it?”

Message from the editor

Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by Coronavirus impacts our advertisers.

If you haven't already, please consider supporting our sports coverage with a digital sports subscription.