Hibs have stepped up their bid to lure Neil Lennon as their new head coach by opening talks with the former Celtic and Bolton Wanderers manager.
The Northern Irishman indicated earlier this week that he would be open to the idea of speaking to the club about the possibility of replacing Alan Stubbs, who left to take charge at Rotherham United.
Bookmakers Ladbrokes temporarily suspended betting on Lennon landing the job on Thursday afternoon, although it swiftly transpired that there had been no direct contact between the parties at that point.
However, dialogue has now been opened, with Lennon understood to be the primary target of the Easter Road hierarchy. After returning to Scotland following a golfing trip to Ireland, the 44-year-old was tonight due to meet his representative to discuss further the possibility of becoming Hibs head coach.
Lennon, who was previously linked with the Hibs job following John Collins’ departure in 2007, is keen to return to management after a chastening experience at Bolton Wanderers, where he was sacked in March of this year following 15 months in charge.
The former Celtic and Leicester midfielder took over at the Lancashire club when they sat bottom of the Championship in October 2014 and managed to guide them to safety. However, as the club’s financial problems took a firmer hold, Lennon was unable to prevent them plummeting towards League One this season, and he left three months ago with Bolton having won just four of their 37 Championship matches.
Prior to that, he won three Premiership titles and two Scottish Cups during a four-year reign in charge of Celtic. He also led the Parkhead club into the last 16 of the Champions League in the 2012/13 season after famously beating Barcelona 2-0 in the group stage.
His appointment would be viewed as a major coup by Hibs supporters.