Goalkeeper Scott Bain is hoping to prove that Dundee’s loss is Hibernian’s gain as he attempts to put an unsettling period in Tayside behind him and earn a permanent move to the Leith club.
Brought in on loan until the end of the season, the 26-year-old is relishing the chance to get back playing football after a disciplinary dispute with Dundee manager Neil McCann had left him kicking his heels on the sidelines since late October and fuelled the belief that he had played his last game for the Dens Park side.
“You would need to speak to Dundee about that but I was out of the team and this opportunity came up. It was one I was buzzing to get… personally I wanted to get out and try to play because I wasn’t.
“The way it was handled was the way it was handled, if you know what I mean. I’m still a Dundee employee on loan at Hibs and the stuff with the PFA is still ongoing. There’s not much I can say about it.
“It’s football, things move on and they move quickly. I had a great three and a half years there, I have some fantastic memories I will take with me and I appreciate they took a chance on me from a part-time team [Alloa]. It was a big risk, and I thank Paul Hartley for taking that risk. But things move on quickly and I am not even thinking about that anymore, I am just focused on being at Hibs now.”
And Bain says, rather than look back, his sights are set on a bright future. “I don’t have anything to prove to Dundee. I played over 100 games for that club and I did well for them and they did well for me. But it’s finished now and the only point I have to prove is to myself that I can play for a club like Hibs.
“The Dundee fans were great. My Twitter inbox was full of a lot of fans wishing me all the best and sorry to see me go. I felt the same but we move on in football. I’m raring to go.”
Heading out with the rest of the Hibs squad for a warm-weather training camp in Portugal today will give the new signing time to get to know his new team-mates, but he says he’s already acquainted with several of his new colleagues.
“It’s not going to be a case of coming into the unknown. Boyley [Martin Boyle] was at Dundee with me and we are good friends. I’m sure he will give me a wee tour.”
The pacy forward was another who joined the Easter Road club from Dundee on a loan deal and used the six months to earn a permanent deal.
That was back in 2015 and since then he has celebrated a Scottish Cup triumph and a Championship title and last week he was rewarded with an extension to his current contract, tying him to the club until 2021.
Bain would be happy with a similar outcome.
“Boyley has been fantastic since he came here to Hibs on loan from Dundee. He deserves all the praise that he has been getting recently. I pretty much feel the same way. I hope I can bring a similar thing to Hibs that Boyley has brought, in terms of coming from Dundee and showing that it’s their loss.”
Although swapping one Premiership team for another, Bain says it is a step up. “There’s not many people who get a loan move from third bottom of the league to a club sitting fourth top and challenging for second and third.
“The facilities here are fantastic, the stadium is fantastic and the level of crowd you get is unbelievable here. It’s something I am really looking forward to.
“I am just looking to get in, hit the ground running and work as hard as I possibly can to try and force my way in. It’s going to be difficult, we have good goalkeepers here but it’s a challenge and I am looking forward to it.”
With Ross Laidlaw on the long-term injured list, Bain will battle it out with Ofir Marciano for the starting berth.
“I always think that competition at football clubs is fantastic,” he added. “It helps everyone raise their game.
“It’s a big six months ahead of me. I want to work as hard as possible and show the manager I’m capable of being a Hibs player.”
Lennon, though, has been well aware of the player’s capabilities for a while, praising him for his man of the match performance when Dundee held Hibs to a draw back in August.
“I hope that made a positive impact on him,” said Bain. “All you can do is play well every week and people will get an opinion in their mind about you. Hopefully it is a good one. Hopefully that match stuck in his mind and it was the reason I am here now. I want to produce more performances like that for Neil Lennon now.
“He has a huge profile up here in Scotland. He’s done a fantastic job with Hibs. He’s a winner and he wants to win every game. That’s what I am all about and I am really looking forward to seeing how he works and doing my best for him and for Hibs.”