Lee Johnson in Hibs transfer claim about Kevin Nisbet - 'as far as I'm aware'

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Hibs manager Lee Johnson insists he is expecting Kevin Nisbet to be at the club until at least the end of the season, after the striker had a change of heart over a proposed transfer to Millwall.

The Easter Road side accepted an offer for the 25-year-old from the English Championship side and the player travelled down to London to talks terms and undergo a medical. But just 90 minutes after Johnson lamented the loss of both Nisbet and Ryan Porteous, who completed a move to Watford on Friday, news broke that the Scotland forward was heading back to Scotland after U-turning on a move south.

Nisbet came off the bench to score the fourth goal in Hibs’ 6-0 victory over Aberdeen, the final nail in Jim Goodwin’s coffin as the Dons boss was given his marching orders just 19 minutes after the full-time whistle.

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His late return from England may have been a factor in his place on the bench but a dead leg sustained in last weekend’s Scottish Cup defeat by Hearts meant he had been unable to train all week – and with an important game against Ross County on Tuesday, Johnson wants the striker as fit as possible.

Kevin Nisbet applauds the fans as he warms up during Hibs' 6-0 victory over AberdeenKevin Nisbet applauds the fans as he warms up during Hibs' 6-0 victory over Aberdeen
Kevin Nisbet applauds the fans as he warms up during Hibs' 6-0 victory over Aberdeen

"When Kevin gets the bit between his teeth in anything, he's got that ability and self-belief to be able to focus intently on what he wants,” Johnson said. "He rang me up on Friday and said, 'I'm coming back and I want to start' but I told him we'd been working without him all week, he hadn't kicked a ball, but I'd get him on, and obviously we have another game on Tuesday.”

As for Nisbet’s future, Johnson believes it is at Easter Road, at least until the end of the campaign.

"I believe he'll be here beyond Tuesday. There's nothing else bubbling away as far as I'm aware and I think he'll be here at least until the summer. He hasn't spoken to me a lot, because we've been raptly focused on the Aberdeen game. He was even late for the match because of the traffic from Glasgow but I spoke to him very briefly to say, 'welcome back, I'm personally delighted you haven't gone,' and to articulate why he was going to come on from the bench and not start.”

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