Neil Lennon believes he can get the best out of Scott Allan after the midfielder made a surprise return to Easter Road as part of a three-way transfer deal on deadline day.
Allan, who enjoyed a successful season with Hibs three seasons ago, has joined the Edinburgh club on loan until the end of the season as goalkeeper Scott Bain and striker Simon Murray headed for the exit door.
In a complicated arrangement, Celtic agreed to cutting short Allan’s season-long loan with Dundee to allow him to sign for the Capital club, a move which saw Bain, who had only come to Hibs at the beginning of the transfer window as cover for Ofir Marciano after falling out of favour at Dens Park, join Brendan Rodgers’ side.
The third leg of the deal saw Hibs’ leading scorer Simon Murray head to Dens Park until the end of the season. Kilmarnock goalkeeper Cammy Bell – released by the Rugby Park club hours earlier – signed on at Easter Road until the end of this campaign.
Lennon said: “I like Scott a lot. We’ve been looking for another creative player.
“I think he can add a freshness to our play. If we can get the best form out of him there’s no doubting he has a good game attacking wise.
“I want him to fulfil his talent over the next four or five months. I think he has been plodding along a bit with his career, a player of that talent should be doing more. It’s my job to do that for him try to push him on.”
Although Allan is on loan, Lennon admitted he’d perhaps seek to make it a permanent move, adding: “Scott is a Celtic player – that would be something to look at further down the line whether we could afford it. For the time being he is a Hibs player, he had a good spell here and I hope he can replicate that again.”
Hibs announced last night that Lithuanian striker Deivydas Matulevicius, who signed a two-year deal last summer, has left the club by mutual consent.
Lennon was left singing the praises of Swiss striker Florian Kamberi after he had set Hibs on the way to a 2-1 win over Motherwell, Brandon Barker adding a second before Curtis Main pulled one back for the Steelmen.
The win consolidated Hibs’ fourth place in the Premiership table and pushed them seven points clear of Capital rivals Hearts in the race for a place in next season’s Europa League.
The Hibs boss said: “It was massive win. I don’t think we can stress the importance of the three points at this stage of the season against a really good side who are in and around it.
“It gives us a nice cushion at the minute.
“I thought Florian was superb. I thought we might get 60 or 70 minutes out of him but he was very strong towards the end, gave us a different dimension and scored a fantastic goal.”