Hibs boss provides injury updates on Kevin Nisbet, Harry McKirdy and Joe Newell
Manager Lee Johnson is optimistic about Kevin Nisbet’s prospects of returning to action in Hibs’ next match against Kilmarnock, but fears Harry McKirdy could be sidelined for some time.
McKirdy and Joe Newell both limped off with injuries in the 1-0 victory over St Mirren in Paisley, the forward jarring his ankle and leaving the ground on crutches. He will undergo a scan to assess the damage.
But there is better news on Nisbet. The top scorer missed out in Paisley after pulling up with a hamstring problem in the midweek draw at Ross County, but the injury is not as bad as first feared. Hibs have two weeks before Kilmarnock come to Easter Road on February 18 and Johnson believes Nisbet could make it.
“I think that's possible,” he said. “That will depend on exactly how he feels and we'll do all the testing required to make sure he comes back 100 per cent.”
He added: “This was the best case scenario as it was the lightest of hamstring strains. Nizzy has shown what a big player he is for us this season and we look forward to having him back playing shortly.”
Nisbet has scored eight goals in nine games and nearly moved to Millwall for more than £2 million last week, only for the deal to fall through. Wigan Athletic – managed by former Hibs boss Shaun Maloney – failed in an attempt to sign him on Monday.
McKirdy started in his absence against St Mirren, but limped off after 17 minutes and Newell also came off with a knock in the second half.
The manager explained: “Joe Newell seems a little but better than Harry McKirdy does. It's difficult to say [on McKirdy] in those first 48 hours but he's rocked his ankle and we'll need to make sure there's no weight-bearing on it and then we'll get it scanned in the next 48 hours.”
Johnson added: “The biggest thing [over the next two weeks] is getting the injured players back fit. They've been tough, physical games. You don't want the rest in once sense because you want games, but given it's a cup week and no-one can advance on us, then we take the rest and get players like Jake Doyle-Hayes back and firing.”