Hibs boss Alan Stubbs believes new signing Marvin Bartley will provide the bit of steel he’s been seeking in midfield.
The former Bournemouth, Burnley and Leyton Orient player clinched a two-year deal to provide the Easter Road head coach with a different option in the centre of the park to complement the flair of Scott Allan and Fraser Fyvie.
Revealing he’d been on the trail of the 29-year-old for a number of weeks, Stubbs said: “I am pleased we have finally managed to get it over the line. Marvin is going to give us what I was looking for.
“I wanted someone with a presence and he certainly has that. He is a big lad, very athletic and moveable.
“He will give us a physical presence in midfield. He’s comfortable on the ball and has a lot of attributes that we like and we feel he can fit into the team and it’s make-up so we are pleased to have got his signature. As soon as I spoke to him, he was very excited about coming here. He wants a new challenge, a fresh challenge. He wants to be successful and we feel we can hopefully provide all of that for him.”
Having lost both Liam Craig and Scott Robertson at the end of last season, Stubbs believes Bartley will dovetail neatly alongside the skills of Allan and Fyvie. He said: “We were definitely looking for a midfield player who can give us something different.
“We have some technically very good players like Fraser and Scott while young Scott Martin has come in the last couple of games and done very well. He has a lot of potential, but he is still very young. Sammy Stanton did well the other night, so we have a good blend in there.
“But Marvin is the older one of them. He will just give us that assurance of doing the dirty jobs, of putting his foot in there.
“He’s a big lad, he’s got a good shape about him and I am happy with what we have in there now.”
Bartley, however, won’t feature in today’s friendly against Dunfermline at East End Park, the Reading-born player admitting he has some catching up to do in terms of fitness after turning down offers to remain in England in favour of moving to Edinburgh. He said: “I would be lying if I was to say I am as fit as the other boys. I’ve been training with myself.
“I’m behind but I am working hard with the fitness coach and I will get there. It’s just a matter of time.”