Which Hibs players will survive summer cull as squad cuts bite?

The TWENTY senior pros facing make-or-break point at Easter Road

The squad is certainly thinning out, thanks to the large number of loan deals – plus a few contracts – coming to their natural end. But nobody at East Mains is under any illusions over the clear-out still required when it comes to presenting the new Hibs manager with a squad able to fit onto a single training pitch on the first day of pre-season. Which is just over a fortnight away, in case you weren’t keeping track.

Jacob Blainey being allowed to join Crusaders on a permanent deal, as revealed here yesterday, is probably going to be typical of the business done by new sporting director Malky Mackay over the coming weeks. It’s part of the natural process for any club looking to find a home for one-time youth prospects who never quite managed to break into the first team.

At Hibs, though, the situation is most definitely complicated by the presence of senior professionals in possession of long-term contracts, yet very much on the fringes of things. Players recruited by one manager but undervalued by the next man up in the club’s ever-changing line-up of gaffers. Footballers who cost Hibs a fee, in some cases, but now find themselves available for free to a good home.

The following list of 20 – that’s TWENTY – players all fall into the very loose category of players facing a tricky summer, given the need for cuts at a club desperately seeking to upgrade in all departments. Any players born before 2006 – still eligible for the under-18s next season, like Rory Whittaker – have been excluded because, obviously, they’ll get plenty of game time for at least one team in the year ahead. How many from this group do you think will be kicking off the 2024-25 campaign as established members of the first team squad?