Modesty prevails when Kane Hemmings pinpoints the source of his special scoring feats. Prowess that has brought him 25 goals with a Dundee side that didn’t even make the Premiership top six. The forward isn’t happy just to share both Dens Park frontline duties and a place on the PFA Scotland’s player of the year nominees list with Greg Stewart.
“I think Greg’s probably set up 24 of my 25 goals,” the Englishman said. “Playing with someone like him is easy, once he gets his head up you can make a run and he’ll put it on a plate for you. We’ve built a bond and it’s a pleasure to play with him.”
The pair, previously a potent combination at Cowdenbeath, haven’t just clicked in the professional domain.
“We spend a lot of time together away from the pitch, we travel up together. We don’t speak about football much, right enough. The bond was established at Cowdenbeath,” said the 24-year-old. “When I first went in there, there are certain people you become friends with quicker than others. And although we both left there, we always kept in touch and we’ve remained good friends. Football’s one thing but you always want to have good friends around you.”
Aston Villa and Queen’s Park Rangers have been linked with a move for the former Rangers and Barnsley player Hemmings. And despite having two years left on his deal, it emerged last week that Hemmings has a £250,000 buy-out clause in his contract. Striker partner and pal Stewart – moving into the final year of his current deal – has hinted he will move on. Hemmings, who hopes “something can be sorted” with his friend to see him stay, doesn’t give off a similar vibe.
“I have had a good season,” he said. “The boys have been great with me, the gaffer has been great with me and I am scoring goals so I am happy. I have no real intention to seek a move anywhere. I am enjoying playing my football so there is no reason to change that.”
Paul Hartley’s men effectively have the chance to administer the last rites in tomorrow night’s derby to a doomed Dundee United, and so ensure that next season Dundee will be in a higher division than United for the first time in more than half a century.
Yet, Hemmings, though enjoying these occasions, claims tomorrow’s encounter is just another game.
“I’m sure our fans would enjoy it [if we gave them a dunt on their way down] but whether they go down or stay up it is one of them things. The fans pick up on things though and would like to brag about it.”
Not Hemmings’ way.