HIBERNIAN have moved to plug the gap left by Farid El Alagui’s injury by snapping up former Serie A striker Dominique Malonga on a two-year deal.
The 25-year-old has played in Italy’s top flight with Torino and Cesena, and had spells on loan with Vicenza in Serie B and in Spain’s Segunda Division on loan with Real Murcia last season.
During his time in the Spanish second tier, the Paris-born marksman netted five times in 12 starts for the “Paprika-men” as they finished fourth in the table but he was subsequently released by Cesena at the end of the campaign.
Though capped by France at under-19 level, Malonga has since opted to represent Congo at senior level following a call-up in 2012.
The Achilles operation required by El Alagui following his injury during last weekend’s shock 2-1 defeat by Alloa Athletic left Hibs in the market for another striker in addition to the arrival on loan of Southampton youngster Jake Sinclair on Monday. Malonga is hopeful he can replace the goals the Easter Road outfit thought they were guaranteed with El Alagui’s arrival.
Malonga said: “I’m very happy to be here and to be given the opportunity to sign for Hibs – it’s a great club and Edinburgh is a magnificent city.
“I’ve already played in France, Italy and Spain, so Scotland will be a new challenge for me and it’s one that I’m looking forward to. My aim is to score goals for Hibs, to help the team to win regularly and to hopefully bring joy to the supporters. I’ve won promotion before in Italy, so I know what is necessary to make that happen.”
Head coach Alan Stubbs said: “We’re delighted to be able to add Dominique to the squad. He’s a player that we’ve been looking at for a few weeks. He is technically very gifted, quick and he looks to get beyond defenders.”
Meanwhile, reports yesterday suggested that Hibs were also running the rule over freed
Celtic defender Lewis Toshney after he failed to win a deal at city rivals Hearts.
The 22-year-old is also said to be interesting Kilmarnock and Dundee, where he has had previous loan spells, but is understood to have been invited to train at East Mains with the Hibs squad.