Hibs transfers latest: Manchester United green-light Will Fish return in defensive boost for Lee Johnson

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Defender impressed during the second half of the campaign

Hibs are on the cusp of completing a deal to bring Will Fish back to the club for another campaign. The 20-year-old spent last season at Easter Road on loan from Manchester United, stepping into the void left by the departure of Ryan Porteous to Watford in January and scoring three times in 14 matches as he played a part in the team qualifying for Europe.

Manager Lee Johnson made no secret of his desire to get Fish back either permanently or on loan with the player himself admitting the chance to play in continental competition with Hibs would be a big draw, and as first reported by the Daily Record the former England youth internationalist is set to agree another season-long stay in the Capital.

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United chiefs were in regular dialogue with their Hibs counterparts with all parties happy with the player’s progress, despite claims in December that the English side could look to recall the youngster early from his temporary stint over a lack of playing time.

Will Fish is closing in on a return to HibsWill Fish is closing in on a return to Hibs
Will Fish is closing in on a return to Hibs

Central defenders are something of a priority for Hibs in this transfer window. After selling Porteous during the winter transfer window, former Aberdeen and Hamilton defender Mikey Devlin was signed on a short-term deal in February as cover after leaving Fleetwood Town, but recently joined Livingston after making just one substitute appearance as an auxiliary forward in the 1-1 final-day draw with Hearts at Tynecastle. That, coupled with the end of loan spells for Fish and CJ Egan-Riley, left Johnson with just Rocky Bushiri and Paul Hanlon as senior centre-back options in his first-team squad.

Speaking last month, Fish hinted at his future plans, saying: “I definitely wouldn't go back to playing reserves football. I think everyone is on the same page with that. Once you get a taste of that Saturday 3pm, when there's pressure to get three points and you've got fans cheering you on, it's hard to get that feeling elsewhere. I'm definitely going to go somewhere. If I'm being honest, I didn't realise how a big a club Hibs is and what it means to the fans. There aren’t many clubs down south, outside of the Premier League, that would get the backing that Hibs do.”

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