Hibs remain in talks following reports of wage cut resistance

Player departures possible as club look to make savings
Hibs are in consultation with their staff over wage cuts and redundancies. Photo by Paul Devlin / SNS GroupHibs are in consultation with their staff over wage cuts and redundancies. Photo by Paul Devlin / SNS Group
Hibs are in consultation with their staff over wage cuts and redundancies. Photo by Paul Devlin / SNS Group

Hibs have refused to be drawn on reports that they have encountered initial resistance from players to proposed wage cuts.

The Easter Road squad were asked to accept a reduction in salary, reportedly for up to a year, during a video conference on Monday as club bosses outlined cost-saving measures that have also left a number of non-playing staff facing redundancy.

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Wage deferrals of between 20 and 50 per cent have been in place since the football shutdown in March on the understanding that players will be paid back in full once the economic situation stabilises.

However, an apparent reluctance among the squad to accept any further proposed cuts could force the club to consider alternative cost-saving measures, with players departures possible.

Hibs were considered to be in a strong financial position before the outbreak, having released healthy financial figures at their most recent AGM, but they are not alone in facing cash flow challenges brought upon by the pandemic, with Aberdeen confirming yesterday that they too have begun talks with players, management and staff over temporary wage cuts.

The Edinburgh side are already keen to get Florian Kamberi off the books due to his fractured relationship with fans following comments made in the wake of his loan move to Rangers in January. The club previously turned down two cut-price offers from Hull City in the hope of recouping the £150,000 paid to Grasshopper Zurich for the striker two years ago, although whether that value can be met in the current climate remains to be seen.

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Rangers are also said to be considering a move for the player although the Evening News understands there has been no approach from the Ibrox club since the end of his loan deal, with a move to England or the continent more likely.

Along with Kamberi, Hibs have several other first team stars entering the final year of their contract. Australian international Martin Boyle and goalkeeper Ofir Marciano, the current Israel number one, are among a number of players out of contract next summer, and who are believed to be attracting interest.

Hibs delicate financial position was laid bare in a club statement on Monday which warned of the "substantial and unsustainable strain" the pandemic has had on finances with revenues for the year expected to be halved.

The club has entered a consultation period with the positions of first team coach Grant Murray, along with development squad coaches Lee Makel and Colin Nish reported to be under threat along with a number of staff behind the scenes.

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Hibs’ financial situation has also put a hold on any incoming transfers, at least until wage deferrals are over, leaving Dundee United in pole position to land Dunfermline striker Kevin Nisbet, with last season's Championship winners having already submitted a £250,000 bid, while St Mirren have also offered a deal to another of Jack Ross’s summer targets, former Hamilton midfielder Alex Gogic.