Hibs want more than £2.5m for Elie Youan amid talk on Martin Boyle's future as transfer business ramps up

Hibs are holding out for more money for their forward Elie Youan after a bid from an unnamed French club was tabled last month.

The Scotsman understands that the proposition from the Ligue 1 outfit is in excess of £2.5million once add-ons are factored in, but the Hibs hierarchy is reluctant to sell Youan for that amount. The Easter Road side paid a fee in the region of £700,000 to St Gallen last summer to make his loan move permanent and while accepting the current bid would make a profit on the 25-year-old, Hibs believe his value is higher.

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The France youth internationalist was Hibs' most productive forward last season, scoring ten goals and providing 11 assists in what was a largely underwhelming campaign for the Hibees. Blessed with searing pace and trickery, Youan's levels dipped towards the end of the season and has the ability to frustrate supporters with his inconsistent performances, but he is still deemed as one of the club's prized possessions.

Elie Youan's form this season has attracted interest from France.Elie Youan's form this season has attracted interest from France.
Elie Youan's form this season has attracted interest from France. | SNS Group

Youan still has two years remaining on his current contract at Hibs. A former Nantes youth player, several clubs in his homeland are aware of his form this season. Hibs fended off interest late last transfer window when Basel of the Swiss Super League and English Championship side Stoke City put in bids for the player, with the Potters eventually signing Million Manhoef as a wide forward after Hibs held firm.

With new sporting director Malky Mackay in place and the confirmation of David Gray as first-team head coach, Hibs are currently undergoing a sizeable rebuild of the squad. And while selling Youan would boost an already healthy transfer fund, his attributes are not easily replaced on the club's budget. The player is currently back home on holiday before he joins up with the rest of the Hibs squad for pre-season training on June 22.

Speculation is also mounting over the future of another forward in Martin Boyle, with the 31-year-old quoted in Australian media saying that he would like to one day play in the A-League. Boyle was on target for the Socceroos in their 5-0 World Cup qualification victory over Palestine on Tuesday afternoon and has one further year on his contract, although there is an option to extend. Boyle remains a key part of the first-team picture under Gray, with the duo former team-mates before the head coach retired from playing.

Martin Boyle is currently on international duty with Australia.Martin Boyle is currently on international duty with Australia.
Martin Boyle is currently on international duty with Australia. | SNS Group

Hibs are expected to be very active in the transfer window this summer, with their budget boosted by recent investment from American billionaire and current Bournemouth chairman Bill Foley. Mackay and Gray are expected to trim the squad size down to a more manageable size, with more than 40 senior players on the books at one point last season. The link with the Cherries means that Hibs will be able to bring in players from the English Premier League side and, depending on his fitness, Welsh centre-half Owen Bevan could return to Hibs for the upcoming campaign. The 20-year-old defender arrived on loan in January, only for the agreement to be terminated due to a season-ending injury.

Hibs are also in the market for a new No 1 goalkeeper after David Marshall announced his retirement earlier this week, moving into a backroom role at the club. Ipswich Town's Scotland Under-21 stopper Cieran Slicker has been linked with a loan move in recent days but The Scotsman has learned that there is preference for a more experienced keeper to come in and challenge Jojo Wollacott for the gloves.

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