Hibs pause Josh Doig transfer talks until after Scottish Cup final as Watford make approach

Hibs have made it clear that negotiations with Watford about the possible sale of Josh Doig will have to wait until after Saturday’s Scottish Cup final.

Stating that they are in no hurry to offload the academy graduate, who signed a contract extension in February that is due to run until 2025, the Easter Road side have admitted that there have been informal talks between the clubs.

But, despite the Hornets being keen to sign up the Scottish Football Writers’ Young Player of the Year ahead of next season’s return to the English Premier League, Hibs have said there is no onus on them to agree a deal that would see one of the star prospects move on.

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Reports suggested that a bid of £4m has been prepared, with around £2.5m of that being paid up front and the rest due as add ons, which would relate to appearances and achievements and would also include a percentage of any sell-on fee, but Hibs remain adamant that they remain a long way off establishing a price tag.

The Leith outfit are also smarting that news of their chats have been leaked in the build up to one of the biggest games of the season and have insisted that the matter be placed on the back burner to allow Jack Ross’s side to focus on Saturday’s head to head with St Johnstone – a match that could be Doig’s last for the club.

A move would maintain the 19-year-old’s meteoric rise in the game, having only forced his way into the first team squad post-lockdown. His consistent and composed performances and endeavour to keep improving has seen him catch the eye of several clubs south of the border, with Arsenal, Chelsea and Leicester all credited with an interest.

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But the player himself has said that while he is flattered, he is in no rush to leave a club where he feels he has the scope to improve further.

And owner Ron Gordon has shown his resolve when it comes to holding onto the club’s best young talent, turning down combined bids of around £4m for Kevin Nisbet and Ryan Porteous in the January transfer window.

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Josh Doig has attracted many big-name admirers but, determined to avoid distractions, Hibs are not willing to discuss an potential bids until the Scottish Cup final is over. Photo by Craig Foy / SNS Group

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