Hibs make major change at the top as clear-out continues

Hibs director of football Brian McDermott, left, and Ian Gordon watch a game at Easter Road.Hibs director of football Brian McDermott, left, and Ian Gordon watch a game at Easter Road.
Hibs director of football Brian McDermott, left, and Ian Gordon watch a game at Easter Road.
Club statement points to change in recruitment as Malky flexes influence

Director of football Brian McDermott will leave Hibs as new sporting director Malky Mackay puts his stamp on the department at East Mains. And McDermott’s departure could prompt a change in the club’s approach to recruitment, according to the official announcement revealing the change in personnel.

Mackay, who only officially started work on June 1, was never likely to retain a director of football working to such a similar brief in an area of the club in need of strong leadership. Although McDermott was initially moved sideways following the new man’s arrival, discussions over his exit took place almost immediately.

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Mackay revealed yesterday: “Brian is someone I’ve known for a long time and is a really good man.  Brian and I had a good discussion and came to this conclusion. I’d like to thank him for the good work he’s done over the last 12 months and wish him all the best in his future endeavours.”

Interestingly, the club statement issued this morning contained – alongside the usual boilerplate information about McDermott’s arrival in 2023 and his role overseeing the football operation – a line saying the experienced coach had held “a specific focus on recruitment” during his year at the club. In the lead-up to Mackay’s arrival, it was also suggested that McDermott would move into more of a talent identification role.

Hibs have been widely panned for their scattergun approach to signing players since long before McDermott’s arrival. And it is understood that recruitment has been a key area under review following Mackay’s appointment.

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With new gaffer David Gray desperate to strengthen a squad inherited from a series of short-lived predecessors, Hibs – still carrying a raft of under-contract players unlikely to contribute to the first team - cannot afford to make many mistakes in the summer window. Even before Nick Montgomery was sacked as manager with two games of last season remaining, the Hibs board had pledged to carry out a root-and-branch review of the entire football department at East Mains. McDermott will officially leave Hibs at the end of the month.