It’s now 11 days since Lennon and his assistant Garry Parker were suspended from their posts by chief executive Leeann Dempster following a bust-up during a team meeting at their East Mains training centre, the pair subsequently leaving “by mutual consent” with a club statement insisting they had neither been sacked nor had they resigned.
Since then, Hibs have been inundated by those interested in taking up the post with, as always, a host of names being speculated on, the latest being former Barnsley and Leeds United boss Paul Heckingbottom and ex-Ipswich Town manager Paul Hurst while Alan Stubbs, who steered the Capital outfit to their historic Scottish Cup triumph in 2016, has made it known he wouldn’t be averse to returning.
Hibs have refused to comment while Dempster and George Craig, the club’s head of football operations, sift through the lengthy list, weeding out those seen as unsuitable and narrowing it down to the point where interviews can take place before recommendations are made to the Easter Road board.
Meanwhile, interim head coach Eddie May, who will again be in charge of the team at Celtic Park tomorrow night, believes teenage defender Ryan Porteous will return a stronger and better player having been ruled out for the rest of the season having had surgery on his knee injury.
May revealed the Scotland Under-21 cap will spend his recovery time not only working on his strength and conditioning but on studying video analysis of matches, while he expects double Wimbledon winner Sir Andy Murray, whose sports agency looks after Porteous and his Hibs team-mate Fraser Murray, will also be on hand to give him advice as he himself recovers from hip surgery,
He said: “Ryan has been excellent. He has made a few mistakes along the way but the only way to get better is to make mistakes. He has been fantastic since he broke into the team.
“We are hoping he will come back in better condition in terms of strength and conditioning. Also, we will get him to watch a lot of games and analyse how people should play in those positions. So hopefully he will become a better athlete with a better knowledge of the game in the time he is out.
“He is the kind of player who will go and put in a challenge so he is always going to get injuries. But, if he learns different parts of the game, it might be beneficial for him. We will do a lot of video analysis stuff with him. Ryan is going to recover and be better when he comes back. I am quite sure of that, in all aspects of his game.
“We will try to get Ryan to learn from the best. We have a video analysis room in there where we can sit and watch games. In terms of games in Scotland, I am sure Ryan already does that. He watches the best teams.
“In watching live teams, you could send him down to England, but the most important thing is that Ryan does a lot of work in the gym.
“Sometimes when you are playing week in week out with niggling injuries, you can’t get to your full potential. So he will go and do that and I’m sure Andy will be on the phone giving him advice in terms of rehab and how to be professional when you are going through tough times.”