Hibernian head coach Alan Stubbs is confident he will not be plunged into a goalkeeping crisis ahead of Sunday’s Edinburgh derby against Hearts.
Hull City manager Steve Bruce has said that the Tigers might have to recall shot-stopper Mark Oxley from his six-month loan at Easter Road after Steve Harper sustained an arm injury in Saturday’s 2-2 draw at Arsenal.
Bruce is already without his first choice, Allan McGregor, due to a shoulder problem and the Scotland internationalist is not expected to return until next month. Harper is set to be scanned today to learn the extent of his injury. Swiss Eldin Jakupovic, who came on at the Emirates, is the only other senior keeper on the books at Hull.
Speaking after the Arsenal match, Bruce said: “We have got a goalkeeper at Hibernian so maybe on Monday we will probably have to call him back.”
However, Stubbs believes the English Premier League side can only recall Oxley during a transfer window. The goalkeeper signed a deal with Hibs until January, with the possibility of extending it until the end of the season. Stubbs, whose side beat Livingston 4-0 on Saturday, said: “He can’t do it until January so that’s not something to worry about just now.”
Oxley has started all of Hibs’ games this season and has helped them keep three clean sheets in their last five games.
The 24-year-old Yorkshireman made an instant impact at Easter Road when he scored what proved to be the winning goal directly from a kick-out against Livingston on the opening day of the Championship season. Just before Oxley had finalised his loan move to Hibs and following his first outing for the club as a trialist back in July, Stubbs said: “I spoke to Steve Bruce the other day and there would have to be a volcano or something happen for them to recall him, so hopefully there are no volcanoes.”
Stubbs currently has untried 19-year-old goalkeeper Kleton Perntreou as back-up to Oxley, while veteran goalkeeping coach Alan Combe could also still don the gloves if required.