Sean WELSH was today poised to seal a switch from Hibs to Partick Thistle on loan until the end of the season.
Welsh, who turns 22 next month and is yet to turn out for the Hibs first team, has already spent temporary spells at Stenhousemuir and, last season, at Stirling Albion. He has failed to break through to the Easter Road club’s senior squad since the end of December, when he was named as an unused substitute.
The midfielder is today expected to complete a move to First Division club Thistle, who lie in mid-table of the First Division among a cluster of clubs neither threatened by relegation nor challenging for promotion. Jags boss Jackie McNamara has high hopes that Welsh can fill the void left by the departure of ex-Rangers loanee Kyle Hutton.
“Sean trained with us today and hopefully we can tie that deal up until the end of the season,” said McNamara.
“He gives us another option in midfield, he is a good young player and has a lot of ability. I have admired him for quite a while.
“Sean has been about the first team at Hibs for quite a bit. He can play a few positions, he has good passing ability and can score a goal as well”
Hibs boss Pat Fenlon admits First Division sides Ayr United and Falkirk will view the William Hill Scottish Cup tie against his side as a prime opportunity to cause an upset. Fenlon would rather have been drawn at home in yesterday’s quarter final draw, but faces a trip to either Somerset Park or Falkirk Stadium dependent on the winner of the Ayr-Falkirk tie scheduled for a week tomorrow after postponement at the weekend.
“I would think either Ayr or Falkirk will fancy their chances against us,” Fenlon told the Evening News. “They’ll look at it as the game they were looking for when the draw was made.
“You’d like to be at home – that’s all I look for in a cup draw. But, it could have been worse for us. It’s something to look forward to, but there’s going to be a difficult game in store for us whoever gets through – Ayr United or Falkirk.”
The tie will be played on the weekend of March 10-11.
Meanwhile, Fenlon has expressed his delight at beginning a run of three consecutive home games with a cup victory over Kilmarnock last Saturday. Hibs’ gained their first home win since September through Eoin Doyle’s first-half strike and will face Aberdeen and Celtic at Easter Road on league duty in the next two weekends. Fenlon says the 1-0 win over Killie can help Hibs regain their belief.
“Obviously, winning games brings confidence and a clean sheet is good defensively,” said Fenlon.
“It was important to pick up points on Saturday. The game was a big plus from everyone’s point of view.”