No easy Hibs exit for Easter Road international as summer window opens

Kenneh spent last season on loan to Shrewsbury Town.Kenneh spent last season on loan to Shrewsbury Town.
Kenneh spent last season on loan to Shrewsbury Town. | SNS Group
Midfielder eager to play his way into contention under new boss

International midfielder Nohan Kenneh will NOT be offered a permanent Easter Road escape by Shrewsbury Town, with the League One club apparently dropping their interest in a 21-year-old who spent last season on loan at Croud Meadow. And the former Leeds prospect, back in the Liberia team for their World Cup win at weekend, is eager to play his way into first-team contention under new Hibs gaffer David Gray.

With the transfer window officially opening tomororw, new sporting director Malky Mackay has been lining up a series of departures. One of Mackay’s main priorities is to reduce the overall wage bill AND create squad space for some much-needed summer recruitment. Although Hibs have already off-loaded a number of loan signings and allowed some contracts to run down, they still have 25 first-team players on the books.

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A handful of fringe players and prospects will be moving on, either on loan deals or permanent transfers, as soon as the window opens. Hibs remain hopeful, meanwhile, that negotiations with an unnamed French club will land something close to £3 million as a fee for Elie Youan – allowing new boss David Gray to invest heavily in rebuilding the squad.

Comments by Martin Boyle and Perth Glory sporting director Stan Lazaridis this week also raised the spectre of the Socceroos winger being moved on with a year of his contract remaining. And rookie manager Gray, still trying to finalise his backroom staff before next week’s return to pre-season training, is eager to stamp his mark on the team.

Central midfielder Kenneh, whose signing from Leeds in 2022 was hailed as a “real coup” by then-manager Lee Johnson, looked like a promising first-team prospect during his first half season with Hibs. But he was then loaned out to Ross County by Johnson in January of 2023, with the former gaffer also sanctioning his move to Shrewsbury last summer.

He struggled for game time when manager Matt Taylor was replaced by Paul Hurst in January. And Town, who only just avoided relegation to League Two, will not be resuming their interest in a footballer who played a key role as Liberia beat Sao Tome and Principe to get their World Cup qualifying campaign back on track over the weekend. Kenneh is due to report for pre-season testing at East Mains on Friday week - but faces a challenge to play his way into consideration by the new boss.  ibs are still seeking takers for a number of players unlikely to be starters under Gray, with Riley Harbottle, Harry McKirdy and Ewan Henderson among those being touted for loan or permanent moves.